West Asia Reflection #2

Join us on

20 January 2019 at 6:30pm

in the sanctuary for

West Asia Treats and  Team Report

West Asia Team in refugee room

A Reflection from Ryan Bettwy

The dimly lit room, slightly cool and damp from the week’s worth of rain still steadily falling outside, was the most beautiful space I had ever seen in West Asia. To be clear, it was plain: white walls, drawers off their hinges in the corner, a few oddly wrapped stacks of clothes strewn around the room. But even compared to the Hagia Sophia, the skyline of Istanbul, the shoreline of the Lakeside town, or the Lakeside Roman amphitheater, this room has something more beautiful. This is the place where on Sunday nights young school-aged children growing up surrounded by secular and other-minded people learn about Jesus as they read their copies of the Jesus Storybook Bible. One weekday each week, the same little room transforms into a staging area where mothers who are struggling to support their families can get their
families’ basic needs met, including chick peas, milk and occasionally some clothing.

On this afternoon, we took the seven suitcases of clothing filled to the brim with clothing donated to these families and sorted everything from newborn footie pajamas to adolescent boys’ jackets to adult shorts and dresses. We only had two hours to sort diapers, clothes, and socks, so we were pleasantly surprised to have 20 minutes to spare to gather in a circle and pray for this space. We listened as R shared about her experiences with the refugee women, as well as her ability to relate in as simple ways as she could, limited by language and cultural barriers: most days, warm smiles and lifting boxes to support them as they collect their supplies. As we prayed for God to send people who can communicate with these women, and thanked him for raising up people to care for these vulnerable families, I glanced around the room and appreciated once again how God can use the least presuming circumstances to shape and change the course of peoples’ lives.