Monday, July 11, 2016

Mystery in Evangelism

“This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one.” Ephesians 5:32

When I asked Houda what kind of work her husband did she took her index finger and symbolically demonstrated the gesture of an animal being slaughtered and stated matter of factly, “Khalas, Alhamdulillah!”(finished, thank Allah!) After that she gestured with her hands that she was rid of him. It was rather a dramatic demonstration by a woman who was relieved to be divorced from an abusive man. Obviously marriage is not a taste of paradise for all.

First thing Afsana asked upon meeting me was, “Is your husband a good man?” I thought that was odd to inquire upon introduction. I discovered she had been married three times and divorced. Her parents had divorced when she was young.

“Do you beat your wife?” a curious Pakistani man asked my husband in the marketplace. In that man’s thinking only a weak man does not beat his wife.

Sayeda was attending English classes where my husband volunteered at. She was impacted by his gentle and kind nature and told me so.  It was what probably started her journey towards considering to follow Christ.

Salima sat in our car and watched my husband take out the large bag of garbage from the trunk of the car and throw it in the garbage bin. She was amazed and exclaimed, “In my country only women would take the garbage out.” Wow – they don’t miss a thing, I thought.

Our daughter and son-in-law left their girls with us so they could go on a date. We visited some Muslim friends during that time and explained our adult children were on a date and did they know what that was? Omar thought awhile and said, “Something on the calendar or what you eat.” After I explained what a romantic date was he replied, “Well, we never had anything like that before marriage and now it’s too late.”

For those who are married it is beneficial to be reminded that our marriages are being watched. It is amazing what they observe. They can be mystified and emotionally moved when they see friendship, love, and honor being shown mutually to each other. If you conclude that you are not brave enough to witness verbally or do not know how, you would be surprised how much you are actually witnessing by demonstrating a godly marriage. Like: Oneness. Unity. Love. Certainly there are good marriages among Muslims and there are some broken marriages among Christians. But the point is, one of the ways a Muslim will be drawn to Christ(and to the church) is by observing a godly Christian marriage. There is great power and an irresistible beauty in a godly marriage of two people becoming one. It is a mystery. Don’t you just love witnessing that has an element of mystery to it?

Dear heavenly Father, please make my marriage a divine mystery to my watching Muslim friends. In Jesus’ name, Amen.