Little Sparks of Hope

November 27, 2013 by Open Doors in ,

Iraq *Representative photo used to protect identity. Leaving. It’s the only thing many Christians in central-south Iraq can think about. With the sounds of exploding bombs resounding in their ears and the images of rockets landing in their bedrooms, they feel like there is not much left to stay for. Many of them are leaving the country. Those who cannot flee, find little sparks of hope in joining with other Christians. Open Doors works to help them to help each other. Adiva* and her two children tried to flee many times. We meet her and some fellow believers at an Open Doors sponsored First Aid Trauma Training. A few years ago, when Adiva’s family received death threats, they sold all their belongings, and went abroad. But it wasn’t long before they ran out of money, and had to return. Rehana*, another mother, trusts God, but shares that her son keeps asking her to make plans to leave: “He says: ‘Mom, what are you waiting for? Do you want an explosion to kill me before you decide to move?'”. Christians in general have withdrawn from the local community out of fear of violence or out of protection of their identity. It’s this feeling of fear and not belonging to society that makes them want to flee. William and his coworkers encourage the Christians to reintegrate into society and to support each other as Christians. “I am grateful to be here with all of you” shares Ellinor*, a traumatized believer: “I felt terrible because of everything that has happened, but being with you I feel happy because I can share what is in my heart.” The believers that are gathered here for the First Aid Trauma Training all have their own stories, but they also have a passion to serve other Christians. Participant Ehab* shares that he learned that people do not only need physical health; they need someone to trust and someone who listens to them, too. After failing to flee the last time, Adiva and her family were left with absolutely nothing, not even a house. A nearby church generously offered them to let them live in one of the buildings of the church for free. It’s this willingness to help each other out, that makes the struggle with their existence in Iraq a little more bearable. This trauma training helps them to also heal the nonvisible wounds in people’s hearts . *For security reasons, no real names were used in this article. Please pray for: -Protection over the believers in central-south Iraq -That the church will be a light to society -A family that recently faced a violent robbery is struggling to know if they should remain in Iraq. Please pray for God’s guidance

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