According to Open Doors, 1.8 billion people throughout the world are now observing Ramadan, a time when Muslims fast and pray with the goal of drawing near to Allah. Since so many people will be seeking a spiritual encounter in a more focused way during the next month, this is an incredible opportunity for Christians to pray that an encounter with God would indeed happen for many.
“What if, instead of letting news culture polarize us against Muslims, we let it drive us to pray?” asked Open Doors, an organization that supports persecuted Christians throughout the world. “What if we committed to pray for the Muslim World during Ramadan?”
What Is Ramadan?
Ramadan, which is the holiest month of the year for Muslims, occurs during the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. It begins when the new moon is sighted and lasts until the next new moon, about 30 days. This year Ramadan began at sunset on May 5th.
Ramadan, which commemorates Allah giving the Qu’ran to the prophet Mohammed, is a time when devout Muslims fast during daylight hours and break their fast during the nighttime. The purpose of fasting, according to the Islamic Networks Group (ING), is to learn “self-control, gratitude, and compassion for those less fortunate.”
During Ramadan, people not only abstain from food but also from sexual activity and from negative behaviors, such as gossip and lying. All Muslims who have reached puberty are expected to participate, with exceptions for certain people, such as pregnant women, the elderly, and those who are travelling.
Ramadan is also a social time. It is common for families to join each for meals either before or after their time of fasting during the day.
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Source: Church Leaders