So many of us watched the video. Smoke rose from impressively from one building, and then quickly turned to scarlet as the mushroom blast enveloped and decimated downtown Beirut, the “Paris” of the Middle East. Buildings disappeared, car windows shattered, and dock workers were blown out to sea. More than 300 people died, and 300,000 people were left homeless.
Just a half mile from the blast site sat the building used by City Bible Church, also leveled in the destruction. Pastor Marwan wrote about the aftermath here. Here is an excerpt:
It’s difficult for me to express what’s happening in my heart and mind. There’s an overwhelming sense of God’s presence right now, though I mostly have questions and few answers. I keep thinking about the destruction at the church building and how, in God’s kindness, the explosion didn’t happen during a Sunday service. None of our members suffered major injuries—just confusion from being thrown across the room as their windows exploded. Though our home is just a mile from the blast, and though the building sustained damage, our unit was barely touched. The Lord has been kind.
Brother Marwan asks for prayer:
Please pray with us toward that end. Pray because the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Pray for wisdom as churches mobilize to care for the hurting. Pray for Christ’s strength to be magnified in our weaknesses. Pray also that we would hold fast to the gospel in this incredibly turbulent time. Pray that the lost would look to Jesus to provide for their greatest need.
We live in a broken world, no doubt about it. What sorrow this church and the Lebanese people must feel, and yet, what hope this church knows for certain!! I believe together with our brothers and sisters at City Bible that no failed government, no explosion, no civil war, and no virus can stop the work of Jesus as He builds His church in troubled places.
Lebanon, with its population of almost 7 million, was already in a massive recession and struggling hunger and COVID. Now with a failed government, aging infrastructure, and more than 1.5 million refugees from Syria, you can begin to imagine the difficulties ahead.
If you are able to help these friends financially, tax deductible donations can be given through Redeemer Church in Dubai.