When Ian went to India this year*, God showed him amazing things that he never expected. It was his first time traveling this far from home without his family. From the moment he left Central Pennsylvania, God made it known that Ian and his team were not in control, but He was. Even though they had a set itinerary and a plan in place, God decided to lead them in a different direction and determined their steps. Their flights were delayed several times, they missed flights and their host in India’s father passed away, which interrupted a lot of their team’s plans.
The highlight of Ian’s trip, though, was getting to see the water well his relay team ran for in the Harrisburg Marathon that past fall.
“We traveled for a while on this rural dirt road and I have to admit I was a bit car sick,” Ian said. “All of a sudden, there was a group of people in the middle of the road. We came to a stop and I realized they were there to celebrate with us! We were received with laughter, shouts of praise, smiles, hugs, and handshakes. It was truly overwhelming and I had tears flowing down my cheeks as we walked across the field to the water well. There were about 100 people at the water well dedication to celebrate.”
The way that God worked through Ian in the unexpected experiences, the people he met, and the emotions that he had, were what made this trip to India one of the most amazing experiences he ever had. This trip was a reminder to Ian to not hold on too tightly to his plans, because God always has something better planned.
*This blog post is from our archive.
On Saint Patrick’s Day, some celebrate together, some make recipes or crafts, and others simply wear green. But most never consider the real person behind the holiday. As a captive, refugee, and later missionary to Ireland...
Sahar* has faced unthinkable challenges in the 6 years since 2014. She had to flee her home city and say goodbye to family members for...
Note: This is an update on Sahar's original story from 2017 found here.
Sahar* has faced unthinkable challenges in the 6 years since 2014. She had to flee her home city and say goodbye to family members for what she thought could be forever. Three years ago, her sister Nawal* moved over two thousand miles away to begin a new life in England. Her parents moved to the United States. Meanwhile, Sahar, her husband, and their young son had to stay behind as they were not yet approved to emigrate from Jordan.
Her son had experienced trauma and medical problems that caused early learning difficulties. One of our team members was able to raise funds for a surgery he needed and monthly medications he was taking to help prevent seizures. Through a very close friend of one of our Jordan team members, he was able to receive one-on-one tutoring and saw tremendous progress! He is now in good health and able to speak, remember, and attend regular classes in school.
A few months ago, Sahar's family received wonderful news! They have been approved to move to a nation in Europe. Soon, Sahar will live hundreds, and not thousands of miles from her sister and her family. Their children will be able to see their cousins again in the very near future! We rejoice with Sahar's family and keep them in our prayers as they embark on an exciting new season of life.
*Names changed for protection.
Nawal* and Sahar* are sisters from Homs, Syria. While both were pregnant with their first children, they had to flee because of a 4-year siege of...
Note: This post is from our archive. A 2021 update to Sahar's story can be found here.
Nawal* and Sahar* are sisters from Homs, Syria. While both were pregnant with their first children, they had to flee because of a 4-year siege of their home city. They arrived in Jordan with their husbands and their parents. Soon after their arrival both Nawal and Sahar gave birth to their first children, two boys. Recently Sahar had her second child, a beautiful little girl. Their husbands have done everything in their power to provide for the families. They have sold light bulbs on the street, helped install satellite dishes and many other jobs. Sometimes they worked for over a month and the employer did not pay them. They could do nothing about it because refugees have no legal rights for employment.
In 2016, Nawal and Sahar’s parents immigrated to Chicago. They were so excited that their mom and dad could start a new life in America, but greatly saddened to see their familiy unit torn apart. In Syria their families had all lived near one another. In early September, Nawal received a call from the United Nations telling her that she, her husband and 4-year-old son were eligible to move to Scotland. While this was wonderful news, it was so difficult for her to say “yes” because it meant leaving Sahar behind. Sahar is the only one left in her family. While Sahar was so happy for her sister, there was also great sadness. Would she ever see her sister again? Her son, who has epilepsy, had always been best friends with his cousin. Would they ever see each other again?
On Wednesday night, January 17, both families crammed into a van filled with six large pieces of luggage to go the airport in Amman, Jordan. The ride to the airport was quite silent. When it was time to say goodbye Sahar would not let go of Nawal. She couldn’t bear the thought of her sister leaving her, not knowing what the future would hold. There were tears of joy, but also tears of sadness. Nawal begged our Global Partners staff not to forget Sahar. Her last words to our staff was, “please help the refugees. Our lives are too difficult. Please help them just like you have helped me”.
Today Nawal and her family are in Scotland starting a new season of life. Sahar, her husband and two children are sitting in a cold apartment wondering what their future holds. Will they ever receive a call from the UN? If so, will they go to the UK or US to be near family or will another country accept them?
This story could be told thousands of times over for refugees all over the world. We are so thankful that for the past 15 years Global Partners has been in Jordan living life with refugees like Nawal and Sahar.
*Names changed for protection.
In January of 2016, Jonathan joined a Gpartners team and traveled to India. His 10 day trip was only the beginning of a ripple effect that would matter...