“Thank you for saving her from death for us.” That was the first sentence 17-year-old Fouad prayed, in the first time he ever prayed out loud.
Fouad’s 15-year-old sister, Jackline attempted to commit suicide a few months ago by jumping off a bridge a stone’s throw away from my former apartment. The setting and the story are all too familiar.
- Refugee family.
- Abusive father.
- Children struggling in school.
- Mom struggling to make ends meet.
Jackline left school to provide for her family at age 14 but she found it harder and harder to hold onto hope until one day, it just seemed too much. By a miracle, her life was spared, and she “only” suffered a fractured vertebrae, pelvic fracture, and shoulder fracture requiring one surgery and extended immobilization with old-school sandbag traction.
I heard about Jackline’s case instantly like everyone else in the neighborhood – word of mouth and an unfortunate (I do not condone this) TikTok video. But the minute I heard, my heart stirred, and I prayed for a chance to work with Jackline. I had several connections to her family so one of my clinics picked up Jackline’s case. However, the frustrating reality of the difficulties of fragmented medical care in a complicated case like this was draining. I quickly found myself coordinating everything:
- Transportation to the hospital,
- begging for x-ray/operative reports/ post-op instructions,
- communicating between the doctors who had little desire to communicate,
- finding the right therapist,
- and emotional/spiritual support, etc.
It seemed every step forward was three steps back. And all of the factors that led Jackline to make this decision were still fully present.
Last week. when I visited Jackline, she had another physical and emotional setback, and I suddenly found myself struggling to hold onto hope. I called for a conference call between several of us that are working with her, and we continued to daily lift her up in prayer.
Recently, Jackline greeted me, standing on her own strength without assistance, fully dressed, and a genuine smile on her face, having done nearly everything we challenged her to do this week. Perhaps the greatest answer to prayer was when my friend asked her if she wanted to close our session in prayer.
Jackline hesitated and said she wasn’t ready. Her older brother, shyly stepped in and, although he said it was the first time he ever prayed, he started with the lines Jackline needed to hear – gratitude for her life. Gratitude for what God is and will continue to do.
Please pray for Jackline and Fouad and her family. I know that God has a purpose for her life. Pray also for our team here, that we would have the wisdom to know best how to help them, and others like them.
On your social media, copy and paste the link to this blog with an answer to one of these questions:
- How have you seen God work out a difficult situation in your own life?
- Write out a prayer for Jackline and Fouad.
- Write out a prayer for the team in Lebanon.
Or, you can write your answer in the comment section of this blog post.
- Learn more or give to Jennifer Coon and her work in Lebanon.
- Give to Refugees and At-Risk Families here.
- An Interview With Joshua Project Founder, Dan Scribner
- God’s Timeline To Freedom
- Viewing World Events Through Three Lenses