God is being glorified even in the aftermath of the Islamic State’s genocide.
And what’s happening in one small Syrian town proves it.
“After the war with Islamic State people were looking for the right path, and distancing themselves from Islam. People were scared and felt lost.”
“That’s when I decided to follow Jesus’ teachings.”
We have read and written about it time and again: war, strife, and fear bringing with it hope and faith in Jesus. He does, after all, send us the great Comforter.
This has happened in the town of Kobani, Syria, where ISIS forces destroyed much of the town and, consequently, the Islamic faith for many living there.
The radical practices that the Islamic State followed destroyed the Islamic faith of many who witnessed their cruelty.
So, in fact, their efforts have had the opposite effect than they intended.
“This was painted by IS as a religious conflict, using religious slogans. Because of this a lot of Kurds lost trust in religion generally, not just Islam.”
But although many turned away from religion, “…many others became Christian.”
The stranglehold ISIS had on this town ended about four years ago when Kobani forces, helped by the US, fought back their oppressors.
In the vacuum that they left, many in Kobani turned to Jesus for strength. The first evangelical church was opened in Kobani just last year!
Omar Firas, the founder of this church, said that there are about 20 families who attend services at the new church. He says that this means that around 80-100 people are hearing the words of Jesus Christ and having fellowship with other believers.
This is tremendous news! This means that a seed has been planted, and with God leading them, more seeds will be planted as a result and there will be a growing harvest!
The word of God is contagious and moves and grows and is wonderfully awesome! How important these families are to this region and to God!
Unfortunately, there are those who do not believe that the faith these new Christians have is sincere. Because Christians tend to get relief funds and there are groups that will help Christians with their needs, some people think that their faith is a ruse to get financial help from different groups.
However, the Christians of Kobani maintain that their faith is genuine and that they love Jesus Christ and want to walk in His word and to do His work.
There are also those who believe that western Christian aide groups have used the wars and strife going on in the Middle East to bring Christianity there. They see it as an exploitation of the people there.
The Christian missionaries know that they are saving a great many people.
In any case, whether you believe their faith or not, the Christians of Kobani are seeing a change in their town and region and they are experiencing the hope, peace and Love of Jesus Christ.
One man spoke of the happiness he saw in others and marveled at the Love that they spoke of. Because of this, he chose to also give his life, and his heart, to Jesus Christ.
For many, life in Kobani seems to be restoring itself back to normal. The population has been restored to about the same as it was before the war, although, the town itself still bears the scars of the violence.
Buildings have crumbled and lives have been destroyed, and yet amid the chaos, hope seems to have found a place to shine in this Syrian border town.
We know that this is the power of our Heavenly Father shining through His people there.
We also know that the trials for new Christians can be plentiful, not to mention new Christians in the middle of wars and oppression.
Please join us in praying for our Christian brothers and sisters who are walking with Jesus Christ in these war-torn areas of the world.
And don’t forget to pray for those who are new in the Faith, that they not be misled and that they have experienced leaders who truly Love and follow the Lord.