Wearing a Cross for Jesus

December 11, 2015

by Nathan Best, Samaritan's Purse staff member

Samaritan’s Purse helps Syrian refugee who fled persecution for his faith in Christ.

Refugee Crisis Graphic

Above: Rana, Tarek and Karam (pictured right)

Today, while helping migrants, I noticed a man wearing a cross necklace and approached him to inquire. During my initial exchange with him, he shied away from me.

Later on, when I was done, he came over and asked why I was inquiring about the necklace. I said usually people wear something like that as a reminder of Jesus. Then he began to open up.

Karam Laflouf, 25, is from Homs, Syria. He was studying to be an architect when the war in Syria began to threaten his life. Most of his family are now outside of Syria, in places such as Germany and the Bahamas.

Wearing A Cross For Jesus

Karam's physical reminder of Jesus' love.

His father and mother stayed home in Syria because their advances ages made it too dangerous for them to escape Syria.

Karam began to describe what I thought my life was like back in Canada.

Karam was involved in his church community back in Homs, overseeing three youth groups. Along with his schooling for architecture, Karam wanted to continue building the Kingdom through these ministry opportunities.

The cross I mentioned earlier has a unique story. Karam couldn’t wear it while living in Syria for fear that he would be persecuted. He had a cross and the name of Jesus tattooed on his hand as a reminder instead.

He told me about a friend, Rana, who was with him and how she had to flee her home. Rana was hesitant to trust anyone after all the horrors she’s experienced.

Some people started persecuting her family. Her house was destroyed as she and her family fled. Karam then went on to say that some of their friends are still missing because of people who kidnapped them.

I leave you with the words of Jesus himself,

Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:11-12

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