2023 Christmas Offering
This year’s offering will help Heart for Lebanon share more hope with the citizens and refugees in Lebanon.
Since 1987, we have given an offering to help ignite a passion to follow Jesus locally and globally. We strategically choose projects that will help establish and equip the local church among the world’s largest unreached people groups—those who currently have little hope of hearing the gospel because there is no one in their community to tell them.
Lebanon is now home to the highest number of refugees per capita of any country in the world and is plagued by regional wars, economic crisis, and political instability. Heart for Lebanon’s singular focus is to bring gospel hope to those living in despair. And while the impact of Heart for Lebanon is ever increasing, so is the need.
Heart for Lebanon’s hub, Hope Ministry Center, is currently located in the northern half of the country. By building a second Hope Ministry Center in the south, Heart for Lebanon will be able to consolidate their southern ministry programs into a single location and expand services. The new Hope Ministry Center will host a church community, humanitarian response programs, non-formal school, and youth-specific ministry.
To view the full 2023 Christmas Offering booklet, download the PDF.
Did you know?
An estimated three-quarters of Lebanon’s population now lives in poverty. 9 in 10 households in Lebanon can’t afford to buy essential household items.
I come from a Muslim background and used to love God and prayer, but I always thought that my prayers weren’t answered and felt it was because I wasn’t a good enough Muslim.
When war broke out in Syria, we fled to Lebanon and things were very hard for us. Taking care of my kids was always on my mind because I didn’t have hope for the future.
Then my sister invited me to Heart for Lebanon, and later staff from Heart for Lebanon came to our home and sat with us. Their humility touched me and spoke to my heart. They invited me to a Bible study, but while I sat there, I thought, “I am a heretic just for listening to what these teachers are saying.”
At Bible study, I couldn’t understand what was being said but I always felt relief after being there. This study began a spiritual journey for me. I took a Bible home and poured over it, comparing verses I read to the Koran. Each day I was learning and understanding more and more about Jesus, his values, and his teachings. They resonated with me, and I began to love him.
I decided to follow Jesus and give him everything.
My son was born with intestinal issues that required multiple surgeries, and we were denied medical grants. I was a refugee, new to the country. I was broken and desperate, without any hope. Someone told me about Heart for Lebanon. When I went there, they gathered around me and prayed. I thought, “What are they doing? I need money. I need help. My child is going to die because no one will help us.”
But then I immediately received a phone call that my son’s medical grant had been approved, and his surgeries would be performed. I arrived at the hospital where they confirmed that 90% of our medical needs had been covered.
The first surgery was successful, and we returned in three months for the next one. During the second surgery, there were complications, and I felt a voice calling me to get up and pray. I began praying, “Jesus, if you are really God, fix this.” After seven hours, the surgeon came out and said everything was complete and no more surgeries would be needed. He asked me, “What good works have you done? How can you explain what happened in that surgery room?” He shared that it felt as if someone was guiding his hands in the surgery and helping him. I fell to my knees and said to Jesus, “You ARE God,” and gave my life to him.
I’m here for one reason . . . to share that Jesus transformed me from darkness to light.
My situation in Syria got really bad with the war. I had thirteen kids and lost two of them. When I reached the border, I was desperate, and we waited for a week to cross into Lebanon.
They were rejecting many refugees, and I was worried. I went to the man controlling the border crossing. He asked who I was going to see, and I said I was going to visit Elias, even though I didn’t know anyone named Elias. Finally we got through.
When we made it over the border from Syria into Lebanon, we didn’t have shelter so me and my wife and eleven children slept under a bridge. Then a man in a truck stopped and loaded us all up and drove us to a farm in Sidon. He said we could live in a small room that he had.
Later we learned that this man was a Christian . . . named Elias.
I began to work for the man who owned the farm, and he would come to visit our family. On every visit he would tell us a story from the Bible.
Once a man from Jordan came to visit us to tell us about Jesus. We sent him away, but he continued to visit. We eventually agreed to listen to these stories about Jesus. I was invited to church but said, “No, this is prohibited. It’s heresy.”
Finally I visited church. The sermon was about loving one another and your enemies. I didn’t think this was possible. On each visit to the church, I learned something new and my life began to change. I believed in Jesus and accepted him. Everyone noticed that I was different. I received hate and even death threats from those around me because of my Christian faith. My wife wanted to leave me. My children didn’t trust me. But no matter what challenge may come to me, it doesn’t compare to what Jesus went through on my behalf.
I’m more determined than ever to share my faith with others.
The 2023 Christmas Offering will help fund the construction of a second Hope Ministry Center—a multipurpose facility in Sidon, Lebanon. Once complete, the two-phase project will:
Provide a home base for ministry in southern Lebanon and allow for expansion of services
Expand ministry reach, specifically the discipleship and leadership programs
Host Hope Evangelical Church, planted in response to the growing number of believers as a result of Heart for Lebanon’s ministry
Allow Heart for Lebanon to continue building trust and relationships with local authorities
Pray that the name of Christ will be made known through the ministry of Heart for Lebanon, particularly as the gospel reaches new hearts in the Sidon region.
On December 3, 2023, we’ll collect our Christmas Offering in-person during services. Or you can give online now through the end of December.