When the sun sets tonight, the month-long Muslim holiday of Ramadan begins. I was reminded of this yesterday when I saw my neighbor's extended family members arrive, the men wearing traditional garb and the women in the black niqab veils that cover most of their faces.
During Ramadan, Muslims fast from many things during the daylight hours. It is also a special time of prayer and worship, when Muslims are to evaluate their lives and purify their souls by practicing self-restraint.
I think this is a good time to pray for our Muslim neighbors, prayers that are multi-faceted. Just as with any people group, Christians should pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal the truth of Jesus Christ and the good news of His salvation. That is our highest priority. But we also need to pray for wisdom, peace, and self-restraint in the area of Muslim-Christian relations. We need to pray that God would restrain those (on both sides) who would murder others in His name. And we need to pray for Muslim women in places where female oppression leads to much suffering.
During this holiday, you might find the video testimonies on MeetIstanbul.com to be a useful introduction to the Muslims of Turkey. "Old Meets New" is a visual introduction to the city of Istanbul, while the three other videos on the site feature the testimonies of those who have responded to the gospel. Their words and perspectives are useful for broadening our own understanding and knowledge of Islam.