…You are my help and my deliverer; O my God, do not delay. – Psalm 40:17
As i write this post, Syria is entering its fourth year of conflict; a conflict that has been described as “the largest humanitarian crisis of the century” (CARE USA). As a result of this crisis, it is estimated that Syria’s development has regressed about 35 years. Can you imagine how long it will take for Syria to make up for these lost years?
With the war raging, many children, women, and families have been caught in the middle; in fact, we now hear the term “the lost generation” being used to describe Syria’s youngest population. At a recent CARE conference, i was told that 1/4 of the Syrian population is under the age of 14. Many babies have been (and continue to be) born to Syrian refugees, and these babies will join other Syrian children who can no longer enjoy the benefits of healthy nutrition and education (which they deserve) if we don’t stop this war.
There are so many needs; as you read the news (from your various outlets), please try not to get overwhelmed. Rather, find something you can do; we can all do something. Last week, i was in Washington, DC talking with members of Congress about supporting humanitarian assistance in Syria and in the neighboring countries that have opened their doors to Syrian refugees. This weekend, i am joining World Vision in praying for the children of Syria. All of our actions matter. As a Christian, i understand that this war will require God’s mercy; mercy that will be reflected in the decisions that will be made by Syrian leaders, Syrian citizens, and the global community at large. As a Global Health professional and advocate, i understand that we need to address the root causes of this war, which include: inequality, greed, and injustice. God is watching; He knows that we need Him. So, let’s actively seek His peace and blessings for Syria.
As you join me in praying for Syria and its people, i encourage you to also educate yourself about the situation. I recommend this Time magazine article and this lengthier (but important) report by UNICEF.
Don’t be discouraged. Though the road might seem windy and unending… God’s grace is sufficient.