When you think about the Muslim world today, what hopes and prayers are uppermost in your mind? With so much suffering, turmoil and chaos, perhaps you just wish God would intervene and bring back peace and order as quickly as possible? Certainly that’s what most politicians are striving for, both inside and outside of the Muslim world, and rightly so.
And yet, God does not seem to be answering those prayers, at least not in any obvious and visible way. The suffering continues, communities remain torn apart by hatred and war, countries teeter on the brink of ruin. Why has God allowed all of this? Doesn’t he care? What is he doing? Is he doing anything?
The first thing to remind ourselves is that God loves Muslims far more than we can ever imagine, and he cares far more deeply about the Muslim world than any politician or aid worker. But God’s concern for the Muslim world goes way back before the current troubles we see. For as long as there has been a Muslim world, God has cared about it and about those who live in it. And we can be sure that one overriding concern he has always had has been the hardness of heart and rejection of Jesus as Lord and Saviour, which has characterised Muslim communities. What would it take to break that hardness of heart? What would shake Muslims enough to make them even consider letting go of Islam and turning to Jesus?
To be clear, God does not cause evil and suffering, but he may allow it for his own purposes. What we see happening among Muslims today seems to be a clear example of this principle. Today, individuals, mission agencies and churches working among Muslims around the world are reporting an unprecedented openness to the gospel amidst an ever-growing disillusionment with the answers that Islam offers.
Far from doing nothing, God is doing more among Muslims today than has ever been seen in the past 1400 years. He is breaking down centuries-old strongholds and shining the light of the gospel into hearts that have long been in darkness.
As we pray for the Muslim world, let’s ‘seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness’. Everything else follows from that (Matthew 6:33).
What to do now
If this encourages you, share this encouragement with others. Take a look at some of the testimonies from former Muslims on our Vimeo page (with helpful English subtitles). There’s lots to get excited about, so pass it on!
If you don’t already receive our monthly newsletters, sign up today and look out for testimonies, quotes and statistics that clearly demonstrate the positive trend mentioned above.
Make a comment below or use social media to let us know your thoughts about today. Use the hashtag #RethinkingRamadan.
Tomorrow’s reassess quiz is about cities of the Arab world.