“ISIS has been defeated inside Syria, and the West seems to think the war in Syria is winding down,” observes Tom Atema, President of Coronary heart for Lebanon.
Nevertheless, eradicating the Islamic State’s ideology is proving simpler mentioned than executed. As famous within the aforementioned report, the wives and kids of IS fighters nonetheless embrace terrorist beliefs. In accordance with Atema, these messages exist in Lebanon’s refugee camps, too.
“It’s not openly talked about but it’s openly pursued by radical groups to get more people to join that way of thinking, and many do.”
The IS caliphate: gone however not useless
Final month, U.S. President Trump and Syrian officers declared an finish to the Islamic State caliphate, main many to consider the conflict in Syria was close to conclusion. Atema agrees to an extent. Sure, he says, the Syrian conflict is “back to [the way it was] before ISIS raised its ugly head.”
Nevertheless, combating between dozens of armed factions inside Syria is ongoing, and the civil conflict is nowhere close to decision. Moreover, “you’ve got this drawback that we’re speaking about now – ideology.
“Ideology cannot be won and fought over unless you work with the young people and start changing their minds.”
Islamic State fighters acknowledge the significance of shaping younger minds. A lady residing in Syria’s al-Hol refugee camp underscored this truth throughout a dialog with NPR:
That is the subsequent technology of the caliphate. In case you discuss to them, they’ve the true creed implanted of their minds. The true creed will stay.
“The war – the ideology war – is not over, and it never will be,” Atema continues. “It will always have its followers and its groups. But, once again, I think it’s an opportunity – a gift of opportunity from God – for those of us who are faith followers of Jesus Christ.”
IS terrorists inflict unimagined horrors on society wherever they seem – all within the title of Islam. The radicals’ dedication and dedication repulse most, however captivate some.
“They (Islamic State) believe very strongly that one of the problems in the world is… that the Muslim culture has ‘drifted’ from the core values and they’ve got to get back to the ‘pure’ religion of Islam,” Atema explains, making an attempt to summarize the message which enraptures so many.
“When you have nothing going on in your life – life is void and you have nothing to do but wander around and think – your mind might go in that direction if there’s not an alternative.”
This underscores the significance of Coronary heart for Lebanon’s presence and message.
A brand new message
Coronary heart for Lebanon’s main focus helps under-resourced households and kids in Lebanon. When Syria’s civil conflict started eight years in the past and refugees began flooding throughout the border, the ministry expanded its efforts to achieve this new inhabitants.
In the present day, Coronary heart for Lebanon actively leads folks from despair to hope via household care and schooling, relational engagement, and reconciliation via religious discipleship.
“I don’t want to say they’re easily convinced about Jesus Christ, but they’re more open to a discussion than ever before.”
Find out about Coronary heart for Lebanon’s ministry to Syrian refugees right here. Extra importantly, please encompass the group in prayer. Ask the Lord to supply leaders with knowledge and discernment.
“We have the capacity [and] the staff. We just need the resources and wisdom on how to execute that in a proper manner,” Atema says.
“With our new ministry center [opening] in September, we can take our school from 100 students to 250 students…. Instead of 900 refugee families… we can take that number up to 4,000 families.”
Header picture courtesy Prayercast.