Chocolates, Roses, and Loving our Enemies

from Shane's Muslim Connect

At Men’s Bible Study recently we kicked around Jesus’ command to love our enemies. We wondered if this was an example “log in your eye” hyperbole. We speculated whether or not a Christian infantryman could obey this command when in combat. We wondered who our enemies really are and reaffirmed that Jesus also wants us to do the often hard work of loving non-enemies we live, work, and go to church with. 

Where do Muslims fit in this? I was a fraidy cat and didn’t bring them up in our discussion, but we’re friends here, right? Recognizing that some of us don’t live in easy proximity to Muslims (if you do, buy a Muslim family a box of Valentine’s Day chocolate this weekend and send me a photo - it would make my day!), how can we actually love them, enemies or not?

1. Pray: Check out the amazing work of the gang at PrayerCast. These are beautiful prayers set to stunning video. Ramadan begins in a couple of months. Grab some copies of 30 Days of Prayer for yourself, your pastor, and some friends. 

2. Learn: Here are three books I value: Muslims, Christians, and Jesus by Carl Medearis, Connecting with Muslims by Fouad Masri, the Encountering the World of Islam textbook; and one I’m looking forward to reading: Christian. Muslim. Friend: Twelve Paths to Real Relationship by David Shenk. 

3. Speak Up: Gently, winsomely, factually take the side of Muslims if someone is spouting nonsense. We’re not everyone’s policeman, but if you’ve got a pocketful of data, use it. 

4. Visit: Start planning now to spend some post-COVID vacation time and money in Muslim places. Of course, the Maldives would be the top of this list! Then Saudi Arabia or any capital city in Western Europe. If you can only make it to a town near you, have a meal at a Muslim restaurant. The food will be good, and you can do items 1 and 2 while you enjoy it.