"Greetings in the Name of Jesus. Please pray for Turkey and for our families in Syria. Today is a day of grieving. May God have mercy on His people in Turkey and Syria. Nine hundred twelve people died, and more than 5000 have been injured." Nizam- A Syrian refugee in Turkey studying at 4G3 Discipleship Institute in Izmir.
"We expect another earthquake today. It is freezing cold, and we expect a snowstorm today." Sirin, an 18-year-old Syrian attendant of 4G3 Discipleship Institute, wrote,
It is so different when you hear news of earthquakes and famine or pestilence in places where you do not know anyone.
It is entirely different when you hear of earthquakes in a place where you know so many and have ministered alongside them just a few months back.
The news reported:
Major quake hits Turkey. A 7.8 magnitude earthquake and several aftershocks struck southeastern Turkey early today, causing buildings to collapse and sending tremors across other areas of Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, and Israel. The preliminary death toll was at least 2100 people, but that number is expected to rise. Compounding the damage: Many of the residential buildings in the region near the epicenter are of low-quality construction, making them susceptible to shaking, per the United States Geological Survey. (Morning Brew and New York Times)
4G3 has over 120 students all over Turkey studying in four locations in Turkey (Istanbul, Izmir, and Yalava.) Many are Syrian refugees who have been kidnapped or raped by ISIS and miraculously fled to Turkey. Others are Iraqi refugees who fled because of the persecution.
That those studying in 4G3 discipleship Institutes will stand firm in their faith.
That they will be able to spread the Good News of Jesus during the devastation.
That they will not doubt God's goodness despite everything going around them.
That God will provide food and shelter for those whose homes have been demolished by the earthquake.