Lebanon (SAT-7) — In a month that held terror and horror for the world, people talked about why these stories were hitting so much harder. One word: vulnerability. Inability to protect, predict, change the outcome of someone’s intent. The result can be a fragmentation of society.
SAT-7 shares one story about how Lebanon’s believers took their solution to heart.
In a month when suicide bombers killed 43 civilians on the streets of Beirut, residents of the Lebanese capital also had the opportunity to hear far better news in a ground-breaking Gospel media campaign.
The Power to Change Conference united volunteers from some 57 cooperating churches for the first time. It also combined city-wide advertising using roadside and overhead billboards with advertising on national radio and TV and international promotions on satellite channel SAT-7.
Ads promoted free DVDs and a book telling the stories of 12 well-known Lebanese figures whose lives and difficult situations had been changed by encounters with Christ. Among these was Rawad Daou, a SAT-7 presenter, contemporary worship leader, and co-host for three live events at the end of the campaign.
Some 2,500 callers phoned in for copies of The Power to Change DVD, among them requests for over 1,200 copies from the Bekaa Valley, home to around 400,000 Syrian refugees. Each caller received prayer from telephone counselors and an invitation to the three closing events at the prestigious Emile Lahoud stadium in Beirut.
On November 28-30, there was standing-room only in the 1,500-seat conference venue. Worship was led by prominent Christian musicians from Lebanon, Egypt, and Jordan, and a different Gospel minister spoke of the power of Christ to bring radical change to a person’s life.
This was illustrated powerfully in the second night’s message by Pastor Waleed Bitar. After preaching on the conversion of Saint Paul–once a fanatical persecutor of Christians, he shared his own experience of Christ’s power. Pastor Bitar told the audience how he moved from hatred to forgiveness for the killers of his brother, whose body was torn apart by a missile during the Lebanese Civil War.
Campaign Chair, Pastor Joseph Negm, said, “At the time of active political movements in our country from one side or another, Power to Change announces a vertical movement from above, a movement inspired by the Holy Spirit in our city to push back the darkness and allow the light of the Bible to shine through.”