Believers Press on With the Gospel Despite Iraq Instability

Iraqi demonstrators gather at a memorial for a protester, who was killed last night during the ongoing anti-government protest due to poor public services at Tahrir Square in Baghdad, Iraq July 27, 2020. REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani

Record-setting summer heat and government incompetence are taking a toll on Iraq. Two people were killed by security forces in Baghdad last week while protesting power cuts.

“What I’m hearing from people on the ground is frustration and disappointment with the situation in the country,” Jane* from the prayer ministry Cry Out says.

“The instability that has always been part of Iraq is continuing, and, although there are glimpses of hope, there’s still the underlying concern [and] stress.”

Large-scale anti-government protests began last October and quickly escalated. See a full timeline here. Tired of government corruption and neglect, demonstrators demanded change. As described here, three different Prime Ministers took the helm between October and April.

“The new[est] prime minister [has] had a positive effect on the country. He’s made more changes in the last three months than many of his predecessors [did] during their positions,” Jane notes.

Last week, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi announced compensation for the families of protestors killed by security forces. Yet, trouble remains. Falling oil prices and the pandemic have made Iraq’s economic crisis even worse. No money means no electricity, which means no relief from the sweltering desert heat.

And yet, Jane says, hope remains.

“Amid the heaviness of the situation and so many people overwhelmed by despair, there’s also this golden opportunity. Hearts are opening up to receive the Gospel, to receive the truth of who Jesus is.”

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Katey Hearth

CALL TO ACTION

  • Pray Iraqis will find relief in some form from the sweltering desert heat.
  • Ask the Lord to strengthen and encourage His followers in Iraq as they proclaim the Gospel.
  • Pray that God will give believers renewed vision and renewed passion to continue engaging in the hard-to-reach places and the hard-to-reach hearts.