8 Ways to pray for the people affected by the conflict in Syria

by Denise Koenig on September 11, 2015

Conflict within Syria has displaced more than 7.6 million people within the country and caused more than 4 million refugees to seek safety in Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, and elsewhere. Thousands are now making a desperate bid to reach Europe by land or sea, with many dying tragically along the way.

Suggested prayer points

1. The Syrian people are suffering from widespread conflict. More than 240,000 lives have been lost since the conflict began more than four years ago, and more than 1 million have been injured. Homes and businesses are being destroyed in the violence.

Lord, Psalm 46:9 declares that You, “Make wars cease to the ends of the earth.” Help those in conflict with one another to come to a peaceful solution, so that civilians may resume their daily lives. Lord, we trust in You.

2. Syrian families have been uprooted from their homes by the fighting, displaced in their own country, or fleeing to neighboring countries for safety.  

Lord, come to the aid of families who have fled to safety. Guide them to places where they can find help and rest. Provide host communities with the resources to assist families arriving on their doorstep. Lord, we trust in You. 

3. The U.N. refugee agency reports that through August this year more than 300,000 people have made the treacherous trip across the Mediterranean Sea, exceeding the number that fled in all of 2014. Thousands more are making their way over land to Europe. Many of this number are Syrian refugees seeking a better life, but encountering brutal and dangerous conditions on their journeys.

Gracious Lord, we are helpless in the face of such desperation and tragedy. Let European government leaders come to compassionate solutions for refugees in these dire circumstances. Open our ears to what Your Spirit is saying about our personal involvement in helping meet the overwhelming needs of refugee children and families. Lord, we trust in You. 

4. As resources become scarce, tensions rise between refugees and their host communities. Families living in tents or dilapidated structures are particularly vulnerable to changing weather conditions.

Lord, have mercy on those who have no warm place to stay. Provide desperate families with ample resources to withstand the weather. Infuse aid organizations with extra supplies to meet their variety of needs. Lord, we trust in You.

5. Many Syrian school-aged children are not able to attend classes because they’ve left their communities or because their schools are damaged or occupied by displaced families. Child refugees find it difficult to enroll and participate in classes that are not in their native language. 

Lord, You know that children whose educations are disrupted often have a hard time catching up. This threatens their future prospects to have a career and care for a family. We ask You to help children who are missing classes today. Help them to resume their studies with ease. And give teachers the training to help these students regain what they may have lost. Lord, we trust in You.

6. There are many ancient Christian communities in this region going back to New Testament times. Saul was helped by Christians in Damascus after his encounter with the ascended Christ (Acts 9). These communities today have requested prayer that they may stay strong in faith.

Lord, we lift to You our brothers and sisters in Christ living in this region. Strengthen them with power through the Spirit (Ephesians 3:16). And help them to endure and remain faithful, knowing that nothing can separate them from Your love. Lord, we trust in You.

7. Syrian children face many safety and wellness issues. They’re especially susceptible to malnutrition, dehydration, and diarrheal diseases. Because of the Syrian health system’s deterioration, many have not been immunized or kept current on vaccinations, and outbreaks of measles and polio are common both in Syria and in refugee camps. Due to the nature of living in chaotic, overcrowded, and unfamiliar situations, children also are more vulnerable to sexual abuse and exploitation.

Jesus, You love the little children. Each Syrian child is precious to You. Protect their little bodies from dangerous diseases, and bring healing to those already sick. Keep away predatory adults who are looking to harm or profit from them. Bring loving adults to watch and nurture them as they strive to survive the harsh realities in which they live.

8. The Syrian conflict, now in its fifth year, and the chaos it has bred have become background noise to many people—even those who consider themselves compassionate. The political ramifications of the conflict keep many caring individuals at a comfortable distance. But there is an urgent need for donor governments to allocate funds to meet this humanitarian emergency, for churches to raise a cry of prayer and support for people in desperate circumstances, and for all of us to find a way to engage meaningfully for the sake of Syrian children and their families.

Gracious Lord, awaken us to the needs of Syrian children and their mothers and fathers. Let us not grow weary in doing what is right and good in Your eyes. Remind us to engage on their behalf as we would if it were our own families who were suffering. Help us be advocates for peace in this troubled land and open our hearts and wallets to pray and give gifts to help. Amen.

Join Rich Stearns and Gabe Lyons, Founder of Q THIS TUESDAY for an in-depth conversation about what to do about the ‪#‎refugeecrisis‬. Get FREE access to the live stream here.

Your church can to respond to the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today by hosting a Refugee Sunday.

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