She was the first to attend the Bible study meetings at Heart for Lebanon. She was the first to answer when asked a question related to the lesson. When another lady was upset, she was the first to cheer her up and offer encouragement. This is Darine, one of our Bible study attendees!
Darine grew up in a nominal Christian family practicing rituals and following traditions to please God. She was not interested in having a deep knowledge of Him.
“I was always seeking the spotlight and making others feel less important. I used to brag about myself ignoring those around me. I always used to believe that I have nothing to learn from others and I acted like a know-it-all. I was an angry person and constantly in a bad mood. I hated people and tried to avoid them. I was also very authoritative and I expected to be obeyed,” Darine said with great regret.
“Even my relationship with my husband was not strong enough. We were living together; yet, a little apart because of my personality,” she added.
It was in 2015 when ISIS conquered the city where they lived and imposed their own regulations. The city was engulfed in dangers as the neighboring areas relentlessly came under shelling. It was not until 2022 that her life changed!
The family settled in Zahle, Lebanon in a small rented house. Through their neighbors, they met with Heart for Lebanon staff, and started to benefit from a monthly food portion.
“I had never imagined that through Heart for Lebanon my life would totally change. How great is God’s plan! His plans are to prosper me and not to harm me to give me hope and future. I have experienced every single word in this precious verse because God is faithful to His promises,” she said gratefully.
Darine’s husband accepted Christ as Lord and Savior before his wife, and used to encourage her to attend the meetings at church. She used to see her husband reading in the Bible every night and wondering what attracts him to it. As the time passed by, she found herself sieged by God’s love and grace.
“God started His great work within me when I called Him to do so. I was away and hid from Him because I knew I was a sinful person. What I ignored is that He has he shed His precious blood on the cross for me.” She said with a smile.
In 2022, Darine finally accepted Christ. He changed her character to be more like Him, helping her grow in faith, and igniting passion in her heart for Him.
“As I look back over at the past year, I stand in awe of the Lord to whom all praise is due! I can truly say I have been blessed! God has restored me. He broke my pride, making me a humble person and filled my heart with true joy and peace. He drew my husband and I closer to one another and strengthened our relationship.
“Through the Bible study lessons have been attending every week this past year at the Bekaa center, I have learned about God’s love and goodness. His word is so powerful that it made beauty from the aches in my life. The Bible study program helped me have an understanding of the scripture, witnessing faith in action. It also built my self-confidence because God commanded us to be strong and courageous to proclaim His name boldly,” she noted with great appreciation.
Darine is a regular attendee of the Bible study and leadership programs. She is very excited about the coming year, and she believes that God will continue His great work within her and use her for His glory.
“God has crowned the year of 2022 with His bounty, and I am looking forward to seeing what plans He has for me in the coming years. I want to grow more in faith and knowledge. My burning desire is to teach the message of truth to people I encounter in my life. It is a tremendous privilege to participate in the work of building God’s kingdom on Earth by evangelizing the lost and discipling believers. How great it is to live a life with purpose,” she added.
As 2023 approaches, Darine looks forwards with great hope knowing that He who was faithful in her past will be faithful in her future; “I do not know what will happen; yet, I know that the Lord is already there in my days to come. I know that I want to know Him more. I want to spend more time reading the Bible and studying it alone and at church. Also, I wish to be obedient, doing what He wills. I want to live as He wants me to. Yes, it is difficult at times, but I am set! I want a disciplined life! Finally, I wish to testify more, reaching more people through my life and words. I want this to be a goal for the upcoming year.
I sure hope that those challenging times do end, as it is becoming more difficult to provide for ourselves. Nonetheless, I am thankful that until now, we are not stranded on the streets or going through a famine. I am grateful for the Lord has been sustaining us, and He shall continue,” she concluded.