A Christian’s Prayer During Ramadan
- Vance Nordman Reaching the Nations Among Us
- 2017 21 Jun
May 26 kicked off Ramadan, the holiest month of the Islamic year. While those of us who are followers of Jesus likely pay little to no attention to this Islamic observance aside from its mention in the news, it creates a unique reminder for Christian believers to pray for our Muslim brothers and sisters.
Ramadan is a 30-day holy period of fasting, prayer and reflection for Muslims, but as you are likely aware, since the May 26 start, terrorists have launched attack after attack, making this the bloodiest Ramadan to date.
Given global events and God’s commands, I believe there are three specific things for which Christians should pray through the June 24 celebration of Ramadan.
Terrorism, by nature, creates fear. More specifically, radical Islamic terrorism in the name of “allah” creates fear of Muslims.
Fear is a powerful agent. It can lead to an array of states from anxiety to anger and even apathy. God knows fear is a common response to many of life’s situations. That is why “fear” is spoken of more than 500 times in the King James Version of the Bible. Time and time again, God’s word reminds us the only One we should fear is the Lord.
Proverbs 29:25 states, “The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.”
When we are plagued by fear, it can block our ability to show compassion, Compassion is a key agent in understanding someone’s struggles and empathizing with their pain, which helps us understand how to better show the love of God to them.
Pray that fear will not creep into your heart but rather you will have compassion for peaceful Muslims, many of whom are also fearful of the radical acts of those who represent their faith.
It has been said, “Preach the gospel, and if necessary, use words.”
The majority of Christians know very little about the Muslim prophet Muhammad, but most Muslims are versed in the person of Jesus.
Jesus is mentioned a number of times in the Qur’an. While Muslims believe Jesus was a great prophet, they don’t believe He died a sacrificial death on the cross and rose from the dead.
Still, Muslims understand his overall message of peace and recognize violence, spewing hateful words and disregarding those in need are counter to Jesus’ actions and commands.
Colossians 3:17 reminds us, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”Pray that God’s light will shine bright in you so that Muslims will see a glimpse of Jesus. Further, pray that their hearts will be open to knowing the One true God.
We tend to think of Jesus' command to "go and make disciples of all nations" in purely mission-oriented terms. We see fulfilling this commission as heading off to foreign and exotic places to share what Christ has accomplished. And while that’s definitely important, it's exciting to look in our own neighborhoods and see how Jesus is bringing the nations to us.
According to a Pew Research Center analysis of data from the State Department’s Refugee Processing Center, nearly 39,000 Muslim refugees entered the U.S. in fiscal 2016, the highest number on record.
As Christians, we have a serious responsibility to share the gospel with others. The writer of Acts tells us in chapter 13, verse 47, “For this is what the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth’.”
Having Muslim brothers and sisters in our communities provides an open door for building relationships and having discussions about our faith.
Pray for opportunities to share your faith, and the wisdom to recognize them when they appear. Trust that God is more interested in their salvation than you are, and He’ll take your requests for opportunities seriously.
Vance Nordman serves as Team Leader for Reaching the Nations Among Us, a ministry of Jesus Film Project. Jesus Film Project offers the JESUSfilm on Blu-ray and DVD as well as via the Jesus Film app in more than 1,500 languages.
Image courtesy: ©Thinkstock/HillStreetStudios
Publication date: June 21, 2017