Wednesday, July 5, 2017

A Need Supplied

Since March 15, 2011, the outbreak of their country’s civil war, Syrian children and families have borne the brunt of the conflict’s disastrous consequences. Hundreds of thousands have been killed and more than half of the population — 11 million people — have been displaced from their homes.

Five million Syrians have fled to other countries as refugees and more than 6 million have been displaced within the country. Amazingly, six of the 5,000,000 found their way to our little mountain town and now live in a home recently purchased by our church.

While the children are quickly picking up English through their interactions with classmates at school and in sports, Mom and Dad find communication in English very challenging. We smile and nod a lot to each other and depend on the children to act as interpreters.

What is even more amazing is that my husband spent eight hours a day for an entire year learning Arabic—47 years ago. In 1970, he entered the United States Air Force with the intention of becoming a chaplain’s assistant. However, a clerical “error” prevented that from happening, and, instead, he studied to become an Arabic Linguist.

He hasn’t spoken or heard Arabic in a conversation for 45 years and yet, words are coming back to him as he interacts with this family. His pronunciation of some of the words causes quite a few chuckles, but his efforts are greatly appreciated. Who would have known Dick would need that knowledge so many years later? God knew.

Some might say, “Wow! What a coincidence.” No, coincidence has nothing to do with it. God, in His infinite wisdom, used that “clerical error” to set the whole thing in motion nearly 50 years ago! Don’t you agree, that deserves an awe-filled “Wow!”?

Be encouraged!

©2017 Pamela D. Williams