As a pastor in the USA, I often pray for Muslims around the world. What about the Muslims in my community?
There are an estimated 3.45 million Muslims living in the USA—about 1.1 percent of the total population. I discovered the mosque near my home in north-east USA when a fellow pastor organized a visit to its Friday service. The mosque leaders treated us as honored guests. They instructed us on proper protocol: Which door to enter, where to put our shoes, where to sit as observers. After the service the imam and other leaders sat with us, served us chilled water and hot Moroccan tea, and answered our questions. They gave us the Qur’an in Arabic and English and invited us to return any time.
I realized Jesus wanted us to show hospitality to these Muslim newcomers. Another pastor and I decided to attend the mosque every Friday to try to be a bridge between our different communities and express the love and truth of Jesus through our friendship.
At first our new Muslim friends were surprised. We answered their questions about why we were coming and asked how we could serve them. They said they needed a place for burials, so we helped them find a cemetery that would allow a Muslim section.
Every evening at sunset during Ramadan, the mosque hosts a dinner, which we attend. The men serve us first even though they have been fasting all day and we have not, but it’s no use arguing with their hospitality. That is who they are. My love for these men energizes my prayer for them.
WAYS TO PRAY:
Many Muslims in the USA are immigrants. Pray they will experience the love of Jesus through the Christians around them (see Matthew 25:37–40).
Many Muslims in the USA are not immigrants, but they can still be seen as outsiders in their own communities. Pray for good relationships among Christians and Muslims in the USA.
Pray for blessings on all aspects of the lives of Muslims in the USA.