Israail’s Story

Israail, FEAL Ministry Worker

I was born in 1977. My parents are Kurdish - my mother is from a Muslim background, my father is from a Zoroaster background and we are registered with the Syrian government as Muslims.

While growing up I grew a hatred towards God because of the circumstances that I saw my people pass through. The Iraqi Kurds were attacked with chemical weapons, the Turkish Kurds had 5,000 villages burned and the Syrian Kurds were banned from using the Kurdish language and Kurdish names - the government ruling meant that my father had to give me a Muslim name. All of these things made me question God’s presence. I started thinking that He wanted all these things to happen and I also thought that God preferred one nation more than another.

After that, I went into the obligatory military service. There, I thought of committing suicide, but I was afraid of pain. During this period, I told God that He was unjust because He brought me here to make me suffer because He enjoyed watching people suffer. While serving in the military, I received news of my father’s death which made me hate God even more because He took my father while I was in the army and I couldn’t even see him.

After completing my service, I returned home and discovered that my mother, my sister and two of my brothers had become fundamental Muslims; they prayed all the time, which was something I was not used to. I lived for a short time with them, but far in thought. Then I started to believe in Islam. I became a fundamentalist and I started defending Islam everywhere. During this time my morals declined, I started looking in depth in the Quran and I reached a place where I started seeing some verses that a sinner cannot accept. So I started thinking, how can I accept them as a believer? So I left the Quran and I told God that I did not see Him in Islam and I asked Him to reveal himself to me through the true religion if He does exist.

In 1999, I found a job working with a Christian and I listened to the music he listened to; it was about a person named Jesus. He gave me the address of a church and even though I used to hate God when I went to His house, He welcomed me with joy. I felt from that time God was calling me. After 6 months I went to a conference and I came back filled with the Holy Spirit. When I entered the house my family welcomed me with fighting and shouting and they told me I was wrong. I went into my room and I told Christ if you are real, reveal yourself to me. I turned off the light, put some music on and I started praying. I saw in my mind, a light stronger than the light of the sun and inside this light, I saw a child. And this child gave me a letter. It said, “my eye is on you and I won’t leave you.” Then a voice came and said to me this is all a lie open your eyes and you will see nothing. Another voice came to me and said open your eyes and declare your belief through what you will witness. I opened my eyes and the same light was there and I was sitting in the light. And I started interacting with this light. I closed my eyes and thanked Jesus because He revealed to me the truth again. I went out of the room and I told my family that God visited me and He showed me that I am on the right track.

In 2000, I studied Theology and church planting for 6 years in Jordan and I had lots of training and conferences. I then went back to Syria where I started my first house church in Aleppo. A few years later, God led me to my hometown of Afrin where we planted 50 house churches. A year ago I faced a lot of persecution. I prayed for an opportunity to leave the country because I was putting myself and the believers in great danger. God called me to Beirut, the road was so dangerous, but I made it. At the beginning of 2016, we started the Kurdish Church in this area with 5 people and now we are around 45 – 50 people.

By supporting Israail and his ministry in Bourj Hammoud, you will be helping to bring hope to the new influx of refugee families. With your help, the ministry will be able to provide vital support, supplies and love to those feeling vulnerable, desperate and hopeless.