Tuesday evening I went to a meeting to listen to Nadia Murad a young Yazidi woman from Iraq. I have had many Yazidi people as my students in my ESL classes and have enjoyed getting to know them. I am saddened by hearing their stories about the atrocities they have been subjected to. Much of Nadia’s family was killed by Daesh commonly referred to as ISIS, but I prefer to say Daesh. Nadia was kidnapped and endured being forced into being a sex slave, escaped, was brought to Germany to receive medical care and therapy, and now she works with the UN as a Goodwill Ambassador speaking out for the Yazidi people and speaking out against human trafficking and sex slavery.
As I sat listening to Nadia and the others share their experiences and the experiences of the Yazidi people, I had the same thought I have had before many times. If I lived in Iraq, I would be subjected to the same treatment the Yazidi people have suffered. I am not Yazidi. My religion is different. I am a Christian or as Daesh would called me- Nazarene. My home would have an Arabic N put on it to identify me as a Christian. I would face the same horrors my Yazidi friends have faced. I would be given the choice to convert or die.
Christians and Yazidis have very different beliefs, but in Iraq and Syria they share the same fates. There are other pertinent reasons why we Christians should care about what has happened to the Yazidis. First and Foremost in my mind is the fact that Jesus loves them. He came to seek the lost. He came to die for our sins out of love for all of us. The fact the Jesus loves them places great value on them. Other reasons could be listed, but the fact that Jesus loves them should be all the motivation we Christians need.
As I sat listening to Nadia, I felt compelled to pray for her. I met her briefly before the meeting began and shared with her that I would be praying for her. She smiled and gave me a hug thanking me. I saw the sadness in her eyes. The sadness of a young woman who endured terrible things and has lost most of her family. I will be praying for Nadia, my Yazidi friends, and the Yazidi people to experience the love of Jesus.
There are still over 300,000 Yazidi people living in refugee camps in Iraq, Syria and Turkey. They cannot go home yet. Perhaps they never will be able to due to the oppression the they have always faced. They need food, medicine, and other items for basic living.
There are hundreds of thousands of Yazidis scattered over the world living as refugees in places like the U.S., Germany, Sweden, Australia, Canada and other countries. They need help building new lives for themselves in their new countries.
They need our prayers, our love and our care. They need us to be the hands of Jesus reaching out in love to help them.
Samaritan’s Purse has been active in reaching out to and assisting the Yazidis. A link for that is:
The Yazidis also have an organization called Yazda at yazda.org.