More people face death, hunger, and disease in Yemen than any other nation. A massive coronavirus outbreak would have devastating consequences; health infrastructure is extremely fragile and two-thirds of the population already struggle to meet minimum food needs. Half of this group, or 10 million Yemenis, are on the brink of starvation.
Yemen is known for war and violence, yet God is doing some incredible things. The Church is growing in a place where Christians aren’t allowed to exist.
In Yemen, everyone’s considered Muslim, and following Christ could get you the death penalty. Believers exist in Yemen, but the risk is so high they must live out their faith in secret. More about that here.
Through a secure connection, Yemeni believers spoke with MNN about what God is doing in their country and how the global Body of Christ can support them. We’re including the full discussion below for you in a Q&A format.
Q: Most news headlines focus on war and violence in Yemen, yet God is doing some incredible things. What do you want Christians to know?
A: We want them to know that we are facing the most difficult challenge of our lives, and one of the most challenging situations in the world. There is a lot of destruction, suffering, and pain and most people do not have anything to hope or trust in.
The Christians in Yemen experience the impact of war just as others do, but we know that the Lord is with us and has not forgotten us. We would ask Christians in other parts of the world not to forget us.
We have seen that God is faithful to answer prayers and we see Him at work as He draws people to Himself. Much of the fruit that we see today has come in spite of the stealing, killing, destroying that the enemy is doing. God’s plans to seek and save the lost have not changed.
Q: We’ve heard there is a great hunger for God in your country. Can you tell us more about that?
A: When a person’s understanding of life and his or her values are challenged, it can make that person question their beliefs. This war and the humanitarian disaster have shaken the foundations that the Yemeni people have stood on for centuries. People are trying to understand why this is happening and questioning their faith, a faith which really does not have a good answer for the struggles and pain they are experiencing. This is how God is using the crisis to draw people to Himself.
Many times we get to be a part of answering the questions of the people around us, or those around us with no hope get to see us live with peace and hope in a loving God. God has given Christians in Yemen a great opportunity, and although it comes with a big risk, we are taking the opportunities to speak of our faith.
Q: How can Christians in the West pray for Yemen?
A: Obviously, we want to pray that if it’s God plan, the war will stop and the situation will improve. They can also pray that Christians in Yemen will experience the presence and power of God in a very dark place. Pray that with wisdom and discernment, the brothers and sisters will share His love with the people that desperately need it, and see a harvest that brings glory to God. Pray Ephesians 3:17b-19a, that believers “rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth, and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge.” (ESV)
Header image is a 2016 photo obtained via Wikimedia Commons.