19th March 2019

SAT-7 UK: A New Heart

 

TUE 19 MARCH

“Since we are receiving a kingdom

that cannot be shaken, let us be

thankful, and so worship God.”

(Hebrews 12:28)

Pray for refugee men who feel a loss

of identity because of displacement

from their home or country. Pray

they will find their identity in

God, whose kingdom cannot be

shaken.

PRAY

What does it mean to be a “real” man?

Unemotional? Brave? Strong? Proud?

In control? These stereotypes can be

found the world over, but are especially

heightened in the MENA, where

traditional gender roles are firmly

entrenched in family life.

As George Makeen explores in his

reflection overleaf, Middle Eastern

men are expected to be strong, tough,

and able to provide for a family. But

in a region experiencing conflict,

uncertainty, economic strain and high

unemployment rates, the pressure

can become too much. Without stable

employment, many young Middle

Eastern men are unable to afford a

dowry or a house, so they are forced

to delay marriage. In the MENA,

marriage is seen as a rite of passage

to adulthood – which means if they

remain unmarried, young men still

live under the control of their parents,

further adding to their crisis of identity.

This build-up of pressure has a

devastating effect on men’s selfesteem

and mental health. In a recent

study across the MENA, it was found

that up to 38% of men were suffering

from depressive symptoms, with

conflict and unemployment frequently

mentioned as causing factors. Between

one-fifth and half of men reported

being ashamed to face their families

because of lack of work or income.

In particular, Syrian refugee men felt a

sense of lost masculine identity as a result

of the conflict and displacement.

In the UK, around 1 in 8 men have a

common mental health problem, but they

may also be reluctant to seek help – often

because they feel it makes them less of

a “man”. The same is true of Middle

Eastern men – but in a culture where

mental health is a taboo topic, even

if they did want support, they would

have no easy access to psychological

care. SAT-7 is helping to fill this gap, by

broadcasting professional, psychological

advice, directly into people’s homes.

SAT-7 also seeks to introduce men to

the ultimate example of a real Middle

Eastern man – Jesus Christ. He showed

what real strength and power look like:

laying down your life in love for other

people. Pray that husbands, fathers and

sons across the region will meet with

Jesus through SAT-7’s TV programmes,

and be given a new heart of openness,

humility and love, modelled on Him:

“Who, being in very nature God, did not

consider equality with God something to be

grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the

very nature of a servant, being made in

human likeness. And being found in

appearance as a man, he humbled

himself and became obedient to death

– even death on a cross!”

(PHILIPPIANS 2:6-8) 

Since watching SAT-7, you’ve become

my role model and I’ve started

behaving like you. I live in Iran and

love to follow Christ but I’ve found no

other Christians and churches.

Honestly, I’m very lonely. My wife

left me five months ago but I love her

very much. When she applied for

divorce I thought of ending my life...

I’m pouring out my heart because I

saw people open up their hearts and

talk in your programmes. I will put

my hope in Christ and look forward

to a better life, with your help.

Taghi, Iran


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