Do Christians own exclusive rights on prayer? Does God only hear those of us who have submitted ourselves to him and follow Jesus? Or would He hear, and even answer, the prayers of a sincere unbeliever?
This Friday, September 25th, 50,000 or more Muslims will gather on the Washington, D.C. Mall for a National Day of Prayer. Here’s what the leader of the event, Hassan Abdellah, says: “Most of the time, when Muslims go to Washington, D.C., they go there to protest some type of event … This is not a protest. Never has the Islamic community prayed on Capitol Hill for the soul of America. We’re Americans. We need to change the face of Islam so people don’t feel every Muslim believes America is ‘the great Satan,’ because we love America.”
However, I’ve been receiving phone calls and emails from Angry Christians calling us to “fast and pray” and “stand against” this “fight for the soul of America.” Wow. Where does that come from? Why such anger? Why would we not rejoice that Muslims are gathering peacefully to pray for America and show their solidarity as Americans with the rest of us? Why?
Throughout the scriptures we see unbelievers calling out to God, coming to Jesus and being heard. Hagar. Persian Kings. Egyptian Pharaohs. Prostitutes. Samaritans. Lepers. Sinners all. And when we first cried out to God (whatever we thought “God” was at the time), didn’t he hear us?
Even if you think that Muslims are praying to the “wrong god,” how about if we pray that the “right god” will hear them and answer.
What if, rather than praying against them on Friday, we prayed with and for them this Friday. What if we went to D.C. as well and stood alongside of them, and served them water during the day and tea at night.
Just a thought….