“THIS ISN’T OUR FAULT!”
“This isn’t our fault!” She blurted out in tears as we listened to the story of how she and her family came to be in this camp.
It’s called VICTIMS GUILT, unmerited, of course, but deeply felt none the less. It’s rooted in a deep sense of embarrassment at being reduced to such a state of poverty and helpless dependence on the mercy of others. At its core is the fear that somehow this may be a form of divine retribution. This also is a false notion but very real to the minds of these people. It’s seldom admitted consciously, but deep within is the smoldering fear of being forsaken and punished of God.
I’ve seen much since I’ve been here but seldom have I been as stricken and disturbed as I was by this woman’s outburst of pent up emotion, fear, and helpless frustration.
She’d lost her husband and then her home in Mosul to ISIS. She and the remainder of her family, her son, his wife and her little grandchild had fled north to Saige village and found shelter in one of the small Christian IDP camps here.
This small village outside Duhok sits at the base of the surrounding mountains. It’s people are mostly Assyrian Christians (Catholic). Many IDPs have fled here from the fighting in Mosul before the border was closed.
Pastor Layth Ibrahim and a team of folks from our church, PC Duhok, have come to bring food and supplies to encourage these persecuted people and share new hope and faith for a better tomorrow.
Some may say,
“Good luck with that one!”
But the skepticism though understandable is also unwarranted. The very real question is this,
What is GOD doing here in the Middle East? Is HE doing anything at all or has HE just given up on the whole complex mess?
For those of us who believe, it’s an absurd question. We believe that GOD, our GOD, not the other one worshipped over here, is “Large and in Charge.” That He’s bringing order out of the chaos and at work reconfiguring the whole region.
We’re laboring over here because there’s something to win and things are beginning to turn for the better. We’re here to help pick up the pieces, minister hope and restoration for the land and its people.
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