the building block of Muslim society.
Islam teaches that family is the building block of society. Millions of Muslims today emigrate to the West to work, study, or seek asylum. These migrations are profoundly impacting Muslim family dynamics around the world.
Please pray that your prayers and support, Hope For Ishmael, and Leading with Love will reach the ears and hearts of all these families.
- PRAYER POINTS
- Pray for the love of Jesus to saturate homes, expelling abuse, inequality, and disunity.
- Pray for courage for believers to share Jesus with their immediate families.
- Pray for entire families to follow Jesus together.
Islam emerged out of the tribal culture of seventh-century Arabia, where a group of related extended families formed a clan, and groups of clans made up a tribe. People were identified not as individuals, but by their membership in an extended family. Even today, the basic family unit in Muslim societies is greater than just parents and children.
A family’s name and reputation are supremely important. Since most Muslim societies highly value honor and fear being shamed, any action that dishonors the family can lead to a strong response, up to and including death. The U.N. estimates that more than 5,000 women and girls are murdered each year in “honor killings” as families seek to restore their lost honor.
Traditionally, roles and expectations are determined by age and gender. Younger family members must show respect to their elders. Women and girls, even if they are older, are usually expected to submit to men and boys. They are given more domestic responsibilities at an earlier age. When a woman marries, she often leaves her home and joins her husband’s household under the authority of her mother-in-law. This can sometimes become a very traumatic, abusive experience.
While permitted under Islamic law, the use of contraception is often discouraged by extremely conservative Muslims. Children are to be kind and respectful not just to their parents, but to all elderly relatives (Quran 17:23-24; 31:14). In addition, Muhammad reportedly once said, “No parent can give their children a better gift than training them in good manners” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi Hadith Collection 27:58).
The Quran and traditions of Muhammad encourage the special treatment of mothers. People should treat their mothers kindly because of the hardship of pregnancy and birth (Quran 46:15). In addition, Muhammad reportedly said that “heaven lies beneath the feet of your mother” (Sahih Hadith Collection 25:20).
Despite high praise for mothers in these sources, families in the Muslim world are thoroughly patriarchal: fathers, uncles, brothers, and sometimes even sons have authority over women. When this authority is abused, women and girls suffer greatly.
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Hope for Ishmael is an organization funded by the generosity of people who desire to be a part of it’s mission. We are committed to sharing the truth of freedom in Christ and the power of reconciliation to the Father and to one another . We are committed to inspiring, training, and equipping Christians to be intentional in this pursuit.
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