from Shane's Muslim Connect
There’s a good chance you’ve fasted more than I have, but there’s a better chance the average Muslim has fasted more than both of us combined!
Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting, begins on April 12th or 13th (depending on where you live). While eating and celebrating do occur at night during Ramadan, the fasting activities during the day are arduous: No eating, no drinking, no smoking, no swallowing saliva, and no sex.
Ramadan is a time of self-denial in order to honor God. Muslims talk of going without to show thanks to God for what he has done, both good and bad. It is a time of purifying oneself and asking God for forgiveness.
If you’re in close, daily contact with Muslims, I can imagine God might nudge you to fast along with them. Since I’m not planning to do that this year (or likely any other year, to be honest), I’m not advocating for it.
I am planning to do these three things and invite you to join me.
1. Pray. Spiritual activity intensifies during Ramadan, both for Muslims and those reaching out to them. Get prayer help with the pdf version of the gold standard 30 Days of Prayer. You can also sign up for a daily prayer email. Gather some people together to pray and find ways to encourage your networks to pray for Muslims this month.
2. Learn. Join me in registering for this helpful webinar next Tuesday evening. Ask Muslim friends questions. Maybe start with, “Do you mind if I ask you something about Ramadan?” Sensitive but curious is a good approach. I was just trying this with a North African friend this morning. I honestly want to know what Ramadan is like for him.
3. Share. Post a brief prayer for your friends and other Muslims during Ramadan on this prayer wall. While you’re there, take a moment to lift up the other requests.
May God multiply our small efforts to his great glory and much abundant life for many Muslims this Ramadan.