From Luke's Inbox: Now Is Not the Time to Learn About Islam

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I understand that missionary work is very important. However, I don't appreciate you encouraging us to teach our children to understand Muslim culture and beliefs. I think this is particularly poor timing.

I appreciate the feedback. Of course, I was expecting this kind of response to some degree. But my conclusion is exactly the opposite: Now is the best time for you and your children to learn about Islam.

You and I both know that Islam is all over the news. But the news is very one-sided. How much better to take time to see how Muslims live, catch a glimpse of what they believe (such as what they think of Jesus), and how Christ has transformed the lives of some Muslim background believers? Equipped with this knowledge, do you not think your children will be better able to pray for this turbulent part of the world? Do you not think they will catch a glimpse of God's heart to bring grace and healing and peace to these people? Do you not see how amazing it would be to give a few dollars and have lives changed in the light of Christ's loving-kindness?

I do. It's glorious.

In desperate need of redemption...

I am so excited about this year's giving opportunity. The fact that recent events have made Islam a topic of national discussion, to me, glows of providence. Now -- now -- now is the time to get involved, to reach up to God and to reach out to our fellow man in desperate need of the transforming power of Christ.

Please, reconsider your part in Off-Road Encounters. You may be more comfortable previewing the videos -- which is not a bad idea. The video team obviously did not go to the more dangerous places where ISIS is currently beheading people, so the series is not going to give a complete picture of the entire situation in the Middle East (of course, I don't think any series could accomplish that given that the conflict is thousands of years old). Perhaps you'd like to share the message in a different way with your children. Awesome! But I do want to exhort you to be part of the solution by both praying and giving as a family.

Then again, urging is all I can do. You get to choose your next steps. You get to choose how you teach your children. That, like missions, is a major part of Sonlight. We believe in education, not indoctrination. I'm never going to tell you what you have to do or believe.

May God bless you this year, whether you get involved in this project or continue to pray for and give to the things that fit your family's missions-minded focus. The need is great all over the world. I am simply excited to see what God does this year through Off-Road Encounters.

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Pseudo-Dad

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