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Now in its 24th year, the annual call to prayer for Muslims coincides each year with the month of Ramadan, which this year runs from June 6 to July 5. Ramadan is based on the Islamic calendar, which is a lunar calendar; as a result, it moves by 11 days each year.  Additionally, some countries have slight variations depending on when the moon is first sighted.

This prayer blog will be used to post prayers during the 30-day period of prayer.  The prayer guide (click on the image for the link to the web page) is available as a downloadable PDF or as a printed booklet (limited quantities still available as of this writing).  I invite anyone who is interested to contribute to the prayers here, or to pray on your own for the world of Islam. 

From the standpoint of challenges to the Gospel, perhaps no challenge today is more formidable than that of Islam.  In many places, Islam is growing faster than Christianity.  With the exception of North Korea, the countries where Christians are persecuted most harshly are all Muslim countries.  Islamic extremism takes many more forms than just the terrorist acts that pop up in our news headlines.

And yet, God has promised that the gates of hell (and Islam is certainly one of those!) will not prevail against his church.  Please join in prayer for all that God longs to do in the world of Islam.

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June 6

Father, thank you for the recent turnings of Muslims to Christ around the world.  Please continue to give your church hearts of love and compassion, and strategies of wisdom in reaching the Muslim world.  Move us far away from the failed strategies of the past.  Move us from the too-common temptation to hate and misunderstand our "enemies".  Move us from our sense of religious superiority. 

Take away all these things, Lord.  Replace them with love for those who have declared themselves your enemies.  Remind us that we, too, were once your enemies and you called us to salvation when we were still your enemies.  In the same way, call Muslims to salvation - to a change of heart and mind, a recognition of their need for a Savior, and faith in Jesus.

Make of us imitators of Christ - with servant hearts, compassionate hearts, and a vision to see the lost from every nation, tribe, and language come to you.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

Day 2 - June 7

Father, thank you for the ways in which your word is spreading in North Africa.  Please protect the movements to you from government efforts to suppress and eradicate Christianity.  Use the new Berber translations of the gospel to reach and save Berbers throughout North Africa.  Bring entire families to yourself through your word, and change the trajectory of villages and towns.

Thank you for using media like radio and satellite TV, alongside Bible translation, to spread your word among North Africans.  Give the producers of these programs words of wisdom to share that will lead to the salvation of listeners. 

Lord, please "re-take" this land that was once so heavily influenced by your Word.  May your light shine brightly in North Africa and dispel the darkness there.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 8: The Maures of Mauritania

Father, thank you for the few believers among the Maure peoples.  Please grow them in their faith and give them courage to testify to your love and grace, even in the face of the fear of persecution.  Intervene in their lives; bless them in both spiritual and material ways, and make them channels of blessing to their neighbors, so that more may be drawn to you.  Win for yourself entire households, and change the spiritual makeup of entire villages and towns.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 9: West Africa

Father, thank you for the emerging movements to Jesus in West Africa.  Please purify your church in this region - cleanse believers from syncretism and lead them to fully put off the old and put on the new.  Grow them both deep and strong in their newfound faith, and in passion to share that faith with others.  Bring to yourself entire households from Muslim backgrounds.  Reveal yourself in answer to their prayers through dreams and visions. 

Please protect believers in West Africa from Boko Haram.  Bring down this organization of evil and turn the hearts of its leaders to you.  Replace their hatred with your love, their violence with your peace.

Raise up persons of peace among groups who are yet unreached with the gospel.  Reveal yourself to them and teach the truth to their hearts and minds.  Draw them to yourself and use them to bring others in their families and villages to you. 

Multiply disciples and churches throughout West Africa to the third and fourth generation and beyond, Father.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 10: Garibou Boys of West Africa

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, please have mercy on the Garibou boys in West Africa who are being abused in the name of religious training.  Raise up advocates willing to champion their rights and multiply centers that can provide those who flee from the control of their masters with shelter, medical care, nutrition, education, and love.

Expose the abuse of these children in the name of Qur'anic training.  Bring the masters to justice.  Give governments in West Africa courage to stand up for the rights of the children and to follow up reports of abuse. 

Convict those who are involved in this abusive system of their sin, and bring them to repentance.  Show them the impossibility of being forgiven for sin through Islam, and draw them to yourself as the only One who offers true forgiveness and salvation.  Amen.

June 11: East Africa

Father, thank you for the courage of followers of Isa al-Masih in East Africa - courage to testify to your Son.  Give them wisdom to both live and verbalize their faith within their communities.  Increase their freedom to share their faith.  Bless their lives both spiritually and materially so that Muslims around them may know that you are God.  Make them channels of your blessing to those around them, so that those Muslims may be drawn to you.

Please raise up persons of peace in Muslim communities who will be open spiritually and who have the influence to lead others to Christ.  Send forth more laborers to these harvest fields, especially those from Muslim backgrounds who will be able to share the gospel in a relevant way.  Reap a harvest among Muslims in East Africa, Lord.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 12: East Africa - The Afar

Father, thank you for the inroads that the gospel has begun to make among the Afar.  Please give the few Afar believers courage and wisdom in sharing their faith.  Bless them both spiritually and materially and make them channels of blessing to others around them who do not know you, so that your name may be honored and your word spread.  Please protect the Afar culture in the midst of much change.  Enable this people to both retain their identity as a people group and to redefine that identity in terms of relationship with you. 

Please raise up more workers to take the gospel to the Afar and give them wisdom to be able to share it effectively.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 13: The Arab World

Father, thank you for the many Muslim-background believers who are coming to faith in Jesus.  Thank you for turning their hearts to you.  Strengthen their faith in the midst of persecution.  Remind them through your word that you see and know their situations.  Give them a sense of your presence with them, and give them words of grace to share.

Please open doors for the youth of the Arab World to encounter the gospel.  Through international students, tourism, business - bring these youth into contact with your word, that they may know more fully who Jesus is.

Lord, the hearts of kings are in your hands - please change the hearts of political and religious leaders in the Arab World to support freedom for people to explore different faiths and to encounter you. 

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 14: The Arab World - Iraq

Father, thank you for the doors that you open for gospel witness through the compassion of your people in Iraq.  Please bless the believers in Iraq so that they in turn may be a blessing to their neighbors, opening the hearts of Muslims to you.

Comfort those who have experienced so much loss in the ongoing war. Again, enable your people to share comfort with those who are far from you, so that they may experience you as a compassionate, gracious, and loving God.

Please raise up strong, wise, righteous leadership in Iraq to fill the void created by all the violence.  Create a stable government that will respect the rights of all the minorities in the country.  Reclaim this land for yourself, Lord God.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

<Sincerest apologies for the lapse in keeping this prayer blog updated.  My wife and I are in the process of a difficult, multi-week move out of state and I haven't had time to keep up very well.  I do intend to complete the month of prayers for the Muslim world in this blog (a little behind schedule!) and hope that others are praying as well.  For any who are reading this and praying along, I apologize again for the lapse and thank you for your patience and forgivness!!

June 15: Turkestan

Father, thank you for the Muslim-background believers in Turkestan who risk persecution for worshiping you.  Thank you for giving them courage in the midst of trials.  Please grant them the fellowship, community, and encouragement to continue to grow in their walks of faith. 

Thank you for raising up faithful missionaries to take the Gospel to each of the people groups in Turkestan.  Please grant fruit to their efforts.  Lead them to persons of peace to whom you have given spirits of openness to spiritual truth.  Give them wisdom to know how to share the Gospel in ways that will draw people to you.

Please change the environment in Turkestan so that the Gospel can spread more freely and reach people more regularly.  Raise up leaders in all the nations that comprise Turkestan who will stand for religious freedom and for human rights.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

June 16: Turkey

Father, thank you for providing a refuge in Turkey for so many who have fled the violence in Syria.  Thank you for how Turkey has received these refugees, even at the expense of instability in its own economy.  Please continue to keep these doors open and please bless those who are offering hospitality to Syrian refugees - whether in an official or unofficial capacity.

Raise up your church to lead the way in showing grace and compassion and in being peacemakers in Turkey.  Resource your church to provide needed services for refugees - give your people a willing and generous spirit to take care of these who are in such need.

Please draw the refugees in Turkey to yourself - bring them into contact with the Gospel and open their hearts to you.  Turn them to you as they search for hope and for a future.

Lord, finally, please bring peace to Syria - peace with justice.  Bring down those who continue the violence for their own ends.  Give wisdom to international leaders to bring the best solution to end this violence.  And in the midst of it all, keep your promise that the gates of hell would not prevail against your church.

In Jesus' name. Amen.

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