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Share the Light during Eid al-Adha

Lorna Johnston /Wednesday, June 28, 2023

 

Have you ever been some place really dark?

Those of us who live in cities seldom experience true darkness because of all the ambient light.

Several times a year we get to spend time at our friends’ cabin on an island off the west coast of BC. It’s pretty remote. When the sun goes down and the generator is turned off the only light comes from the moon and stars. On cloudy days it’s REALLY dark. I’m so glad for my flashlight when I need to find my way around after dark.

Psalm 119:105 in The Living Bible paraphrase says:

Your words are a flashlight to light the path ahead of me and keep me from stumbling.

Have you ever thought of God’s word as a flashlight for life?

The Message version puts it this way:

By your words I can see where I’m going;

they throw a beam of light on my dark path.

If you were stumbling in the dark and someone nearby had a flashlight, wouldn’t you want them to turn it on and shine it on the path, so you both could see where you’re going? If you were holding the flashlight, wouldn’t it be natural to flick it on?

This past Sunday, around 2.5 million Muslims who had travelled to Saudi Arabia to participate in the annual Hajj pilgrimage began their trek. As one of the five pillars of Islam, participation in the Hajj is required once in a lifetime. While the Hajj pilgrims are present in Saudi Arabia, the global Muslim community observes Eid al-Adha along with them.

Eid al-Adha is a commemoration of when the son of Abraham was saved from death by God’s provision of a lamb as the sacrifice, as recorded in the Quran (37:100-108). Although it sounds quite similar to our Biblical account of Abraham’s obedience to sacrifice his son Isaac, the two stories differ in significant ways; just as our understandings of the nature of God differ profoundly.

As you interact with your Muslim friends celebrating Eid al-Adha this week, why don’t you ask them why the story of Abraham and his son is significant to them? You can share why it is significant to you and that it points ahead to the need for a substitute sacrifice—Jesus Christ the Messiah. You might even want to open up the Torah and read the story recorded there to them. (Genesis 22:1-19)

I encourage you to pray for Muslims during this important season. You can watch the Prayercast video to inspire your prayers.

Think again. If you were stumbling in the dark and someone nearby had a flashlight, wouldn’t you want them to turn it on and shine it on the path, so you both could see where you’re going? If you were holding the flashlight, wouldn’t it be natural to flick it on?

Maybe you’ve never tried ‘flicking on’ God’s word in conversation with people who are stumbling in spiritual darkness. Maybe you didn’t realize how dark the darkness can be. Maybe you feel uncomfortable to ‘force’ light into their space.

As you walk the path of life using the ‘flashlight’ of God’s word to guide you, let me encourage you to become skillful at holding the light out for others who are nearby, sharing the light so that they too can be guided by it. Look for the natural bridges, such as the Eid al-Adha celebration, that allow you to shine light on the path of another. And take advantage of all the scripture-based resources that have been made available for just these sorts of conversations.

Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path.

Share the light.


Lorna Johnston is the Diaspora Ministries Leader at Outreach Canada. She leads two national teams -- Simply Mobilizing Canada (SMC) and Loving Muslims Together (LMT). She works with teams of diverse and experienced leaders and ministries across Canada to alert and activate the church in Canada to the changing opportunities to engage God's mission right here in Canada.



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