Ramadan is the Islamic holy month that usually falls in late spring or early summer.
Each day, devout Muslims will begin with a small breakfast before the break of dawn. Then they will abstain from food, drink, gossip, slander, and anything that is considered “unholy” in the Islamic faith throughout the entire day. After the sun sets, friends and family will gather together to share an iftar feast to break the day-long fast.
Ramadan for Muslims is about seeking purity, revelation, and closeness with Allah for 30 days leading up to Eid al-Fitr, a three day celebration following the end of Ramadan. Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam, and in some countries of the world, refusing to fast at Ramadan is a crime.
So what does Ramadan mean to believers in Christ?
First, it is an opportunity to reach out to our Muslim friends, coworkers, and neighbors. This is a large part of their religion, and we should take this chance to ask them about what it means to them and their faith. Use this as an opportunity to show your Muslim friends that you care about them and that you are interested in their culture.
“The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” -Mark 12:31
Ramadan is a pious and important time in the lives of Muslims as they seek the far-reaching perfection that is laid out in the Quran. Oftentimes during this month, they are beseeching and praying that Allah would give them a mighty revelation.
Secondly, the 30 days of Ramadan create an incredible opportunity for Christians to commit to praying each day for the Muslim world. While Muslims are spending hours praying to Allah for revelation, we should be beseeching the one true God to reveal true revelation to His children who are practice Islam.
“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” -James 5:16b
What would a Muslim friend say if you told them that you were taking the 30 days of Ramadan to pray and fast as well, but that you were praying to God in the name of Jesus Christ?
If you are looking for a prayer guide to get you started, 30 Days of Prayer puts out a print and digital booklet every year at Ramadan to encourage believers to pray for Muslims. You can check it out here.
You should consider sharing an iftar meal with Muslim friends or neighbors during Ramadan. Ask them about what they believe. Use the opportunity to share what Jesus says about prayer and fasting. Let the Holy Spirit speak truth into an unbelieving heart. The Lord can do miraculous things if we have the courage and the commitment to ask in His name.
This Ramadan, how could God use you? What is He asking you to do to show love to Muslims?