Before our usual weekly blog post, we wanted to update everybody with information about our outreach locations – Greece and Germany! Just a few days after Christmas, we will first be travelling to the island of Lesbos, Greece for 6 weeks. Our team will be working with the Syrian refugees there in a variety of different roles – from refugee registration, to handing out food and clothing, to simply showing God’s love to these broken and displaced people. The days will be long and emotional, and we are sure that the situation there will hit us like a ton of bricks when we arrive.
After our time in Greece, we will fly to Berlin, Germany for the remaining 4 weeks of outreach, where we’ll be staying at the YWAM Berlin base. There are already 800,000 Syrian refugees living in Germany. We are not exactly sure what our role with be there, but it will likely involve a lot of evangelism and relationship building with both refugees and people in the host communities.
Now, you might be thinking, where’s the backpacking/trekking that we signed up for with the Trailblazers DTS? It turns out that we actually felt so strongly called to help with the Syrian refugee crisis that we are going with a team from the Compassion DTS instead. We never thought Europe would be an outreach location, but all the recent events have put it on the forefront of world issues and on our hearts. Since the beginning of DTS, Alix has felt that God was reawakening her passion for the people of the Middle East. He was reminding Alix that her college concentration in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies was not wasted and that He had a plan for it (like she mentioned in this blog post). When praying about Greece as a possible outreach location, God told Alix that He made her for such a time as this. Also, in prayer for outreach, God showed Connor a specific vision of giving away his Vans shoes to a Syrian refugee. We also feel like it isn’t a coincidence that we’ve had speakers in our lectures from Egypt and from Jordan who have taught us about living amongst Muslims.
So, while we will not be trekking through the mountains of Mexico with our Trailblazers team reaching the unreached there, we will be making the most of this unprecedented refugee crisis to speak God’s truth and love to people in whose country it is extremely dangerous to be Christian. God’s hand is on this mass exodus, breaking down the wall between Christians and Muslims and bringing the Syrians to us instead. Not only is this a chance to reach Syrians, but also to extend the grace of God to the host countries bringing in refugees. We want to be emissaries of hope; to extend humility and acceptance into the hearts of these host countries through our actions and words. If it interests you, feel free to take a few minutes to watch this video and/or read this article to get a better view into the current situation and the lives of these refugees.
In order to be able to go to Greece and Germany, we need to raise $3,300 USD before the end of December. We have been so grateful and overwhelmed by God’s faithfulness in our finances so far, and we know that this amount is just a crumb to Him. We know that He has already lined up the people He wants to partner with us in His vision for the Syrian refugees. Would you prayerfully consider being one of them, and partnering with us in His plan to help the people of Syria and Europe? If you feel led to donate, you can do so through our You Caring page here. Also, if you know of anyone who might want to partner with us, please feel free to share this blog post! We would also greatly appreciate your prayers during this time as we prepare for our outreach. Please pray that God would give us His heart for the Syrian refugees and that our team would be unified and effective in our ministry. Pray for the provision of a translator so we can more effectively communicate with the refugees. Please also pray for strength, as this outreach will be very emotionally and physically draining. Lastly, please pray for the provision of warm clothes for us and for our team. Many of us were unprepared for a cold weather outreach, and we’re now in need of things like winter boots and jackets.
Thank you all for your support and prayers so far! We are learning so much and we can’t wait to go on outreach in just a few short weeks!