What makes you a Christian? What do you gain by following Jesus Christ? One must fast and pray to Allah for the forgiveness of sin. How do you plan to do this now? My name is Abdul, and these were the questions my family had for me after believing in Isa (Jesus). I was born and raised in a Sunni Muslim family in South Asia, where I was taught the Quran and Islam from an early age. One day, my life was changed when someone handed me a Bible. After I placed my faith in Jesus, I dedicated my life to telling my people the Truth. Fellow believers often ask how to minister to those in Islam, and my answer is simple.
During the ninth month of the year, Muslims worldwide observe Ramadan as a month of fasting, prayer, and reflection. After I became a Christian, if I did not participate in Ramadan, it would attract attention and shame on my family. During the first few days of Ramadan it was easy; I flew under the radar while my family focused on meal prep and praying five times daily. However, I knew this strategy would only last for a short time.
Sure enough, a week into Ramadan, my bedroom door swings open, and in stomp my two cousins on a mission. “Abdul, you are coming to Mosque with us,” the two demanded, “it’s for your own good.” Each grabbed one of my arms and carried me out. Thoughts raced through my mind. “What will I do when we get there?” “Do I participate?” “Will they think I recanted my faith in Isa?” I entered the crowded room and stepped onto the carpet. Men were kneeling with faces to the ground. A place I, too, had been months before.
I made eye contact with my cousin, who motioned me to sit down. As my knees hit the ground I began to pray, “Lord God, why I am here?” My heart grew heavy listening to those around me, begging Allah to be near to them. I knew he wouldn’t answer that prayer because he had not answered it for me. As I prayed I sensed the Holy Spirit speak to my heart, “pray for them.” I remembered what I had read in the Bible of a “great cloud of witnesses (Heb. 12:1).” I knew there were believers all over the world praying for me. Who then was praying for my family?
When God radically saved me, I became the one Christian my family and friends knew. Now months later, in the middle of the Mosque, I was praying that they would come to know him too. I asked God to open their eyes to the Truth. “Lord, call my cousins and all of these men to repentance, and help them turn from Islam to faith in Your Son, Jesus Christ,” I prayed.
A lot of time has passed since that day in the Mosque, yet, one thing remains, God is faithful to hear the prayers of his children. I have seen hundreds come to faith in Jesus from Islam because of intercessory prayer. Christians need to know that during this particular month of fasting, Muslims’ hearts are softened and burdened. Therefore, what can believers do during Ramadan? Simple, pray. As Christ’s followers, we know He is the Truth. We have direct access to God the Father through the Son to intercede for lost souls. Pray that those fasting would be awakened to the Truth of the gospel.