/Monday, March 28, 2022
In April of 2022 both Christians and Muslims are talking about fasting.
Christians voluntarily deny themselves as a way to remember and reflect back to the suffering of Jesus on his way to the cross; we will remember Good Friday and then we will celebrate Easter Sunday in memory of his resurrection from the grave.
Muslims deny themselves food during the days of Ramadan. This fast is one of the five pillars of Islam; Muslims believe a faith commitment to these five pillars will earn them a place in heaven someday. Ramadan, because of its very nature, becomes a time of spiritual alertness for Muslim people.
A Story from Morocco
I was travelling in Morocco a few years ago, visiting with a man who told me his story.
He had been living some years in a particular city when he felt God’s spirit telling him to relocate, to find another place to live in that same city. This puzzled him as he had no need to move; he was settled and not dissatisfied with his lodging. But the insistence of God telling him to move eventually convinced him to engage a realtor to find him another house to rent. He prayed God would lead the realtor to the right house.
Moving day arrived and he was unloading his van and noticed a man sitting on the porch across the street watching him. The next day when he went out to his van, he again noticed the man. This continued most days when he went out and eventually, he started waving at the man who returned a friendly wave.
One day he was standing on the street for some time and the man across the street came over to him, shook his hand with a greeting, then asked “So, what’s the message?”
A conversation ensued – the man had had a dream in which he saw a foreigner moving in across the street and this foreigner would have an important message for him. “So, what’s the message?” the man asked.
A light went on in his head as he suddenly understood his role - he was to explain the story of Jesus, our Redeemer.
Praying for my Muslim Friends
During Ramadan I pray daily for my Muslim friends to have a dream, that God would speak to them in ways that they would know Jesus wants them.
For one of my Muslim friends, I ask during Ramadan that God would lead him to search the Bible that I gave to him some years back, that God would lead him to passages of scripture that would engage and instruct him.
I also stay alert to ways that I might send text messages back and forth that God could use in appropriate ways with my Muslim friends during this time of heightened spiritual sensitivity.
- “Thinking of you during Ramadan.”
- “I prayed for you today.”
And I need to be sensitive to the culture of Ramadan. I cannot say, “Let’s meet for coffee.” No, it is their fasting month which I need to respect.
Here is a prayer guide I will be using during this season : 30 Days of Prayer
Will you join me in prayer?
Another option for a prayer guide is from Loving Muslims Together: 30 Days of Prayer for Muslims in Canada
Lent & Ramadan
This year Lent and Ramadan overlap with Ramadan starting April 2nd. Am I connecting the dots? The free gift of salvation which is mine by faith is what my Muslim friends are striving towards by obedience to a lifeless ritual.
"Spirit of God, speak redemptive Truth to Muslims worldwide during Ramadan."
Ron Brown is a Senior Associate with Simply Mobilizing Canada and lives in Calgary, Alberta. He worked for 26 years in Africa with the Christian and Missionary Alliance.
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