(Courtesy of 30 Days of Prayer For the Muslim World) Abu grew up as a Muslim in North Africa. When he decided to follow Jesus, he was disowned by his family. All his acquaintances considered him a “traitor” and he lost his social status.
Abu longs for community and belonging. But even in the existing churches, the Christians treat him with suspicion because he used to be a Muslim. The church leader is afraid of the public authorities. He does not want to baptize Abu and accept him as an official member of the church. Although Abu would like to go into Christian ministry, he is denied theological training or involvement in church leadership.
Abu is one of many Muslims who have found Jesus in the last thirty years. In many Islamic countries, however, converts have a difficult time growing in their new faith and becoming integrated into the family and fellowship of believers, sometimes due to fear, sometimes because there are no existing fellowships nearby. Some MBB’s have formed their own fellowships and networks, encouraged by Christians from farther away, or rely on online connections and resources.
Becoming a disciple of Jesus involves being a part of a community of believers, loving one another and encouraging one another to live as Jesus taught. This looks different in every culture, but in areas where the dominant religion is hostile towards Christians, it can be very challenging. Where churches are just beginning to emerge, the process of organizing discipleship and selecting leaders can be difficult, just as it was in the early days of the Church.
NOTE: It’s important to know that conversion to Christianity from Islam, Hinduism, or Buddhism can be downright dangerous and even deadly in many areas of the world. While this story is about a Muslim convert, all you need to do is imagine a similar scenario in a Buddhist or Hindu nation. PLEASE PRAY for all converts from other religions to Christianity: for mission workers to have wisdom an humility as they disciple them; that the new believers will be able to form fellowships where they live; and that the Church will be unified in love, a living witness of the Father.