Forgiving those who killed my sister

Yasmine lost her sister during the fighting in Aleppo. Here, she tells her story of escape and how upon arriving in Lebanon, she discovered the Bible, Jesus, and the power to forgive.

I remember the day… I was preparing food and my husband was coming home for lunch together. A bomb dropped. It was so close the whole house shook. Our son Iskandar was on the floor because he was so scared.

The next day, my husband left for Lebanon. We couldn’t afford to travel together, so I stayed with Iskandar in Aleppo. We had no water, no fuel, nothing. Iskandar was hungry and I didn’t have any food to give him. One time we didn’t wash for 20 days. We stayed like this for two months. When my husband got a job and found somewhere to live, he borrowed money and came back to get us.

The day we left, the bombs never stopped. People said we’d be killed in our car. But we didn’t have any other option. It took 22 hours to leave Aleppo.

We had nothing when we arrived in Lebanon. Iskandar was two and he was crying all the time, and we had nothing to give him. We were so tired. I had flashbacks about my parents, and friends and relatives who have been killed, and images of our home, remembering that we cannot see our family any more. I spoke to my sister one day, and the next day she was dead.

Discovering Jesus

Then I met a Christian woman who invited me to church. I didn’t know anything about church or Christianity or Jesus. But we started studying the Bible, and I met Rola… I’m so glad I did!

Before, we lived in hatred and anger. Now, through the Bible, we have started to learn about love and how love can change you. My favourite verse is Matthew 5.44, which says ‘Love your enemies.’

The burden in my heart and soul has gone. I feel at peace. It’s time to forgive and forget what happened to us. It’s time to forget the sorrow.

A sister of mine says we should stop going to church as we come from a different faith. But my husband told her we have made this choice. He said, “Read the Bible and you will see this is about love. Don’t say anything until you know what’s written in there.”

I am proud to know Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus has changed our lives. We know the way now. We want to learn more about him. Without Jesus, we are nothing. So if you think you are only helping in a small way, you don’t know how much it has given to people like me.

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