Middle East (MNN) – In the Arab world, donkey carts and iPhones go together. It might be hard to picture, but it’s true. According to Arab World Media’s Jeff, whose name’s been changed for privacy, the Arab people love their iPhones, and as it turns out, this is a good thing.
Media and the Gospel
Pioneers, in collaboration with Arab World Media, launched a new media campaign earlier this year called, While It Is Day. The campaign uses smartphones and the likes to reach out to Muslims across the Arab world with the life changing news of the Gospel.
Jeff explains, “In the Arab world specifically, it’s almost like two sides of the same coin. Our media ministry [is] reaching out and… identifying people that are spiritually seeking. And we are giving those names to our field teams the live across the region, and they do the follow up of these Muslim seekers.”
But instead of telling these people what to think about Christ, the While It Is Day campaign seeks to engage Muslims in conversation about who Jesus Christ is, His love for them, and how He died so that they would be made right with God.
Yet, why engage in conversation rather than a blunt address? Simple. Muslims, in general, are taught not to ask questions. Thankfully, it’s not stopping these people from meeting Christ.
“Just in our first three months of this year, our media team…we’ve had over ten-thousand conversations with Muslim seekers. Just within the first three months of this year, which is phenomenal. About twelve years ago, when I started off in this kind of thing, we never saw this level of openness, of spiritual awareness that we’re seeing actually as we’re talking about it today,” Jeff exclaims.
There’s a few explanations for the increased spiritual awareness and openness of the Arab world. One of them is how God is using the media. Media and social media has grown significantly in today’s age. And, as Jeff says, it has democratized the Arab world in the sense those who were once voiceless now are not. Numerous people in the Arab world now have access to information that was previously barred.
For example, Jeff says, “It’s very easy to see a guy on a donkey cart with an iPhone. iPhones and donkey carts go together…but they love their smartphones. You see refugees fleeing across the border and they all have smartphones. This is the way that the UN is communicating whether there’s food available or not. It is a lifeline for people.”
Jeff and many others have seen more and more people searching for information on facebook, twitter, and other forums. There’s also and increase to questions. Where’s this cultural shift coming from? The fact that there is now endless amounts of information at the peoples’ fingertips, expanding their world views. It’s a journey to explore the world.
“In our media ministry, we never actually tell people what to think. We always tell them what to think about. And then, as the Holy Spirit takes them on a journey, they kind of follow that discovery for themselves,” Jeff explains.
But media isn’t the only reason why Muslims are beginning to look outside their faith. It’s also the youth. Many youths are filled with aspirations and have been the very people fueling some of the revolutions in the Arab world.
Take for example, the Arab Spring. Jeff says, “It started very much as young people wanting something different. And it ended up being, sometimes being hijacked by Islamic fundamentalist groups.”
Finally, a third reason for this spiritual phenomenon among Muslims are the wars and violence.This horrific chaos has caused a disillusionment for Muslims, causing many to turn away from Islam.
Before, the average Muslim was an ordinary person working hard to put their children through school and raise them well in Islam. But, when others began pushing an extreme Islamic ideology, one desiring to reestablish an Islamic golden age using violence, it’s left many confused about their faith.
It’s caused Muslims to struggle with a question, “Is this what Islam is all about?”
Jeff explains, “As a team, we were praying … and the Lord spoke to us from this verse in John 9 to say, While It Is Day, I want you to do this work…so it talks about this opportunity time that we have to share the Gospel of Christ with people.”
As mass amounts of people from the Arab world relocate and flee their homelands, there is a period of time where they are willing to ask more questions than ever and receive answers. Their lives have been ripped apart and they want to know why. They want to know why their faith has failed them.
“We really believe that now is God’s time for that Arab world. And God has shaken the Arab world in so many different ways, and it has given the Church across the world an amazing opportunity to share the love of Christ with Muslims in ways that we have not seen before,” Jeff says.
So why not discover Muslims in our communities to engage in with relationships, pray for, and to express Christ’s love to. As Christians, we might be the only believers for these Muslims meet and are able to hear the Gospel from. Why wait? While It Is Day, as a church, let’s share the good news.
Three key things drawing Muslims to Christ
- The availability of a Bible.
- Meeting a Christian, a person who embodies who Christ is.
- Witnessing Christians love for one another.
And, there is no better time than now to pray from Muslims everywhere, that they would receive the Gospel with open hearts and turn their lives towards Jesus.
So would you?
Will you pray for Muslims to experience God’s grace and love and forgiveness. Pray also that God would protect the While It Is Day media campaign as we enter the month of Ramadan and attacks web attacks on the campaign increase.
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