Syrian Refugees in Turkey Tell Christians “We Don’t Want Food, Just Prayer”

Refugees from Syria are so desperate for help they usually don’t see beyond their own needs, but native missionaries in Turkey recently noticed something different in them.

When a food truck arrives at a given refugee settlement, usually the predominantly Muslim refugees from Syria crowd around it and clamor for distribution to begin, the director of an indigenous ministry in Turkey said. On a recent distribution delivery, however, several Muslim women went not to the truck, but straight to the director.

“I said, ‘Go around to the back of the truck, that’s where the food will come from,’” he said. “But they replied, ‘First we want prayer. This child is crippled, he has no mother, and his father died. He is disabled, please pray for him. We don’t want food, just prayer.”

The director was speechless.

“Because they had heard that all the sick people for which I have asked for prayer have been healed, they immediately came to me for prayer,” he said. “There are several crowds who just see us as the Christians who do food distributions, but now many people at the camps are seeing us as children of God and want prayer from us. I found this child and prayed for him, but I need your prayers as well; please pray for this child.”

A great awakening has begun among refugees in the camps, he added.

“They don’t just think of Jesus as a prophet, but they realize that He is the God of the Christians,” he said.

After distributions, when workers have tea with refugees in their tents and pray for them, they can see that attitudes have changed, he said. Previously the Muslim refugees would make comments such as, “There is no way that Jesus is God,” or, “The Bible has definitely been changed,” he said, but now team members get questions like, “When a Christian dies, do they immediately go to Heaven? Do Christians fast?”

“This really is a miracle,” he said. “These hungry people run to us to receive not flour, rice, oil, and formula, but prayer. These people weren’t like this just a few years ago; it is your prayers that have changed their hearts. I sincerely thank you for being the reason that people here, tens of thousands of kilometers away, have encountered Christ and dozens of people have believed on him.”

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SOURCE: Christian Aid Mission