‘There are risks lurking in these waters’—Pakistani flood victims ask for prayer

September 25, 2022 by Tim Dustin in Persecution updates

Pakistan is experiencing a catastrophic natural disaster unlike anything the country has seen before. Against the backdrop of a failing economy, surge of violence and political instability, the recent devastating floods in Pakistan have further plunged the country into chaos and uncertainty. Our Christian brothers and sisters, who are already living difficult lives, are more in need of our support and prayers now than ever before.

“To say more is to sign our own death sentence”

“Three months until this recedes,” says Gimi*, a farmer and the wife of a veteran relief worker. “No school, no clinic and no local market until then. The water is dirty. The fish are diseased. The crops have been destroyed. There are risks lurking in these waters—men in boats coming to get our girls and what little is left. We know who they are. We know what they think of us, but we are silenced. To say more is to sign our own death sentence.”

Gimi is one of the many tribal believers living in a part of town where persecution against Christians is already high (Pakistan ranks No. 8 of the 50 most dangerous places for Christians to live on Open Doors’ World Watch List). Her heart aches at the discrimination she and her family face because they are Christians. “It is bad, but we are forbidden to talk of it,” she says.

Stripped of their safe havens

The disaster has stripped many believers of their safe havens. Many have had to move their families to the streets as it was no longer safe to stay inside buildings that are on the verge of falling apart. Many continue to call out for help, but help is unable to reach a countless number. Even those who could reach them have callously turned them away because they are Christians.

The level of hunger has reached a point where rule of law holds no power over the people. Some even resort to stealing food from their neighbors. Minorities, especially Christians, who are neglected even in normal circumstances, are now in a dire state. Even through this natural disaster, Christians fear false accusations of religious crimes, forced conversions and abductions.

To worsen things, displaced people with nowhere to go are exposed to criminals and violent groups. Christians are now out in the open with no one to protect them from religious extremists.

“We need your prayers”

Bashira*, a local believer, shared, “We need your prayers. We ask our Father to make a way for these affected people to be reached, given shelter, food and a dry place to stay as they wait for the water levels to recede.

“Pray also that God would give wisdom to those in the government to manage this disaster, which has taken our country back by more than 10 years.”

Pray for the displaced and the scared

Open Doors and our partners are doing what we can to help with what limited resources there are. We are providing spiritual and trauma care where possible. However, there is much more to be done during this time.

“We ask you to pray for those who are serving the displaced and the scared,” says Hina*, an Open Doors partner in the Gulf region. “It is tiring, it is intense, and it is difficult. But nothing brings sweeter joy than to smell the fragrance of Jesus walking into a room and beginning to wipe tears.”

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Let’s come before our King and pray earnestly for our brothers and sisters in Pakistan.

Let’s pray for those in desperate need of food and shelter after these floods, that God would open doors for them and provide for His people. Pray extremism won’t penetrate the faith of weary believers, but that God will strengthen and encourage any and all who need it. And pray God will build an army of helpers, people determined to offer aid and resources to the Pakistanis, and that they’ll be girded with wisdom and discernment and know how to reach the needs of a traumatized people.

Lord, we pray deeply for our family in Pakistan.

 

*Names changed to protect identity

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