Day One: Praying for the world’s displaced and refugees

With more than 65 million people displaced around the world, we are faced with the worst refugee crisis in history. War, conflict, climate change, and poverty force more and more people to flee their homes every day.

The scope of the refugee crisis is truly a global one. Since the civil war in Syria began in 2011, more than 5 million people have left Syria for neighboring countries. In East Africa, drought and conflict have forced millions to leave their homes in search of safety, food, and water. Refugees spend years –sometimes decades – before they are able to return home, if they can return at all.

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me. Matthew 25:35

For many refugees, home is where they want to be. More than four years ago, 11-year-old Sakeena and her family fled Syria for Lebanon. The family of 11 has lived in a makeshift shelter in Lebanon’s remote Bekaa Valley ever since.

Turfa, Sakeena’s mother, hopes that her daughter will someday become a teacher. In the meantime, the family is focused on day-to-day survival.

Turfa knows what she wants for the future. “If God let the war end tomorrow,” she says, “we would walk barefoot back home.”

As we turn the spotlight on refugees around the world, let us pray that they find justice where they seek refuge and peace in their homeland.

Today, pray that

  • ears will no longer turn deaf to the voices of refugees
  • eyes will see a moment for grace instead of a threat
  • tongues will not be silenced but will instead advocate
  • and that hands will reach out to protect refugees in their travels

Dear Father –

The numbers seem overwhelming at times, but you know each individual refugee by name. Each person bears your image. Each child is loved by you. Open our eyes to their need and their potential. Soften our hearts to their suffering. Move us to action in ways that honor the love and compassion you have for each refugee.

In the name of Christ,

Amen

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