In October, 11 of our “behind the scenes” staff at Tying Vines traveled to the Middle East to experience first hand the work Tying Vines is doing and to meet some of our partners working in the communities associated with Tying Vines. During the 10 days of their visit they were blessed to meet up with Haroon and Asif- our partners with NOMADS as well as Corsaire, Anwar and Julene in Lebanon. The trip was challenging, enlightening, and at times heartbreaking as stories of survival, obstacles and trauma were shared during the visit.
Tim, one team member, shared about his excitement in meeting our projects and partners, “to see how they are actually engaging their target populations….Many of the conversations we had will impact our entire organization.” Tim also shared that after witnessing these projects first hand he is not the same person that he was when he left Texas. “In a conversation over dinner, discussing how the refugee whose tent you were sitting in heats their home by burning trash because the gas shortages forced them to find alternative sources of heat, or listening to a kind, gentle mother recount the trauma of watching her entire family murdered in front of her. These things change you forever.”
Our Communications Director, Beth, also joined the team on the trip. As she thought back on the trip and processed the various experiences, she shared a few thoughts. “Beautiful smiles, gracious hospitality, sharing what little they have. Sitting on dirt floors, hearing stories of flooded homes in winter, stories of gratitude for so little…. So grateful for all we heard, the love we experienced.”
Beth, Tim and the whole group were glad to meet many of our partners on the field serving so many. “Whether they hosted us in their home, taught us about the places we were visiting, told us their stories, translated for us, or simply drove us around, the gentleness and kindness with which we were received was powerful. We certainly witnessed a lot of brokenness during our trip, but I thought more of the people working to bring healing and hope to the lives of so many whose lives have been torn apart…”
And from Beth, “How can we help now?”
This month, we are launching our first-ever Christmas fundraising campaign to provide relief for the rapidly rising inflation and shortages of food and fuel, which are already affecting the world’s most at-risk and are anticipated to worsen in the coming months. Please pray with us for the many needs of the communities we serve and future ways to help.