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Field Story Middle East

Loving Our Muslim Neighbors

"Imagine hearing God loves you and wants to forgive you so much that He sacrificed his Son to make it happen."

Imagine living where there is no church, no Bible, no Christians that you’re aware of. Imagine cleaning out the house, doing extra shopping, getting hard jobs out of the way, because you know that for the next month your blood sugar will be low. Imagine trying to overcome all your natural desires in hopes that an angry God might be impressed enough to forgive your sin. Imagine realizing that, in your weakened state, you’ve lashed out in anger at someone, and maybe he won’t. Imagine hearing God loves you and wants to forgive you so much that He sacrificed his Son to make it happen.

For 1.9 billion people around the globe, Ramadan is a season for seeking to draw close to God. It commemorates the time when, according to Islamic tradition, the angel Gabriel delivered the Quran to the prophet Mohammed. Muslims mark the month by fasting from food and water during the day. They seek to reform and please God during this time, in hopes that their good deeds will earn them God’s forgiveness and blessing. Ramadan is a great time to pray for Muslims and share the gospel with them, since they’re already thinking about God’s righteous judgment and desiring to draw near to him. It’s a time of families and friends sharing gifts—pray that they may receive the gift of the love and forgiveness of God through Jesus!

What Can You Do?

Pray that Muslims will become aware of sinful thoughts and desires that can’t be avoided by fasting. Pray for Jesus to reveal himself through the church, dreams, and the Word. Pray that Muslims will be delivered from the burden of trying to earn God’s favor.

You don’t have to fast to earn God’s forgiveness, but now is a good time to fast in prayer for your Muslim friends and neighbors. Choose a day when you can abstain from food, social media, the news, or something else that you’d usually take part in, so that your desire for it can remind you to pray. It will also give you a sense of empathy for what your Muslim neighbors are going through!

Show Hospitality
Community and hospitality are very important in most Muslim cultures, and Ramadan is a time when people enjoy sharing special evening meals together. Invite your Muslim friends over for an evening meal. If they’re from another culture, ask them to teach you how to make one of their special recipes for this season. See if your church would be interested in holding a community meal if you’re in a heavily Muslim area.

Show Respect
Try not to eat or drink in front of someone you know is fasting; be open to engaging in spiritual conversations, but always with “gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:16). Ask questions about why they fast and what it means, even if you know a lot about fasting. By listening to them, you earn the right to share with them.  God can use this to form a deeper friendship, with opportunities for deeper conversations sharing the good news of God drawing us close to himself through the sacrifice of Christ in our place.

Learn more about how you can reach out to your Muslim friends and neighbors with this downloadable prayer guide.

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