Every day on the news, we hear about more terrorist attacks, more civilian casualties, and more collateral damage. It is all-too-easy to just change the channel, keep scrolling, or ignore altogether the barrage of cruel images we see. Sometimes we grow numb to the pain and suffering of our fellow human beings.
Jesus knew pain and suffering first hand. He lived a hard life, and he died a torturous death on our behalf. According to Luke 19:10, Jesus' mission was "to seek and to save the lost." He sought. He saved. In other words, Jesus did not forget about any soul, especially those who were suffering. Since God is the same then, today, and forever, He still will not forget, will not ignore, and will not grow numb. He is God with us.
In light of these things, it is the ultimate goal of IDES to also seek and save the lost. We strategically accomplish this mission by meeting the physical and spiritual needs of suffering people throughout the world in the name of Jesus Christ. This means that we too cannot forget, we too cannot ignore, and we too cannot grow numb.
Ever since western military forces pulled out of Afghanistan, the Taliban extremist group has been regaining territory and putting uninvolved families at risk. With the recent emergence of the Islamic State extremist group nearby, there is now even more pressure on families to flee from harm's way.
"The violence and the withdrawal of international forces has catalyzed a backward slide on much of the progress made in Afghanistan over the last decade, leading to fewer jobs, less security, less foreign investment and a loss of hope," our partner in Kabul reported.
According to our partner mission in Kabul, Afghanistan, there is one major difference in philosophy or approach between the Taliban and the Islamic State:
The Taliban's goal is to govern the country of Afghanistan under strict Islamic law, with little international aspirations. It targets primarily opposing military, development and government forces, and civilians are just unfortunately trapped in the crossfire. The Islamic State's goal, on the other hand, is to establish a global caliphate devoid of any western influence using grotesque violence in order to instill terror and to gain control of the masses. It primarily targets groups of civilians, opposing minority groups, and opposing religious groups.
Hundreds of thousands of families have been and are now fleeing their more rural villages in Afghanistan. Many attempt to leave the country as refugees, but are being met with harshness and very little sympathy from the international community. Many more simply flood into the safest relative city, which at the moment is the capital, Kabul.
Aside from the threatening violence there is another problem. These families had to leave almost all of their belongings and basic necessities behind, which means hunger and poverty are wreaking havoc amongst the displacement camps that they are settling in.
"With the smothering heat during the summer months, higher levels of nutrition are required but many suffer from food poisoning due to food rotting too quickly in the heat," our partner said.
Thanks to your generosity, IDES partnered with a local mission in Kabul to provide cases of non-perishable food items to over 193 internally-displaced families for one month. Our partners continue to serve these families with the love of God day-in and day-out, and explain to them that the relief items are provided due to the generosity of Jesus-followers who have not forgotten them in their suffering.
Your faithful support of IDES' work is what keeps our ministry of help and hope going. It is our responsibility, together, to ensure that refugee and IDP families worldwide know that there is a God in Heaven who loves them, and that they are not to be forgotten.
In the words of our partner, "We are grateful beyond words for the generosity of our brothers and sisters in the U.S. that make operations like this possible."