He’s handsome. He’s charming. He’s got good moral beliefs. He treats you like no other man has treated you. Why wouldn’t you want to be dating him or maybe even marry him? Think again.
These are all questions I asked myself a few short years ago when I was dating the man of my dreams. He was all I could have asked for and so much more. We connected like I never had with another human being! It was amazing! At the time we met, neither of us was actually practicing our faiths but both came from strong backgrounds, he Muslim, and I Christian.
Things I know now that I wish I’d known then…
- People change. The man I married was not serious about his faith, but about a year into marriage, he was suddenly praying 5 times a day and needed to abide by the (MANY) rules of Islam (including no kissing during Ramadan – as long as the sun was up!!).
- In some ways, there is no such thing as “the individual” in Islam. Everyone is part of a family, a people group, and/or a community. Decisions are made as groups, not individuals and pressure is put on by families. Families have an extremely strong influence on their children – even from across the ocean!!
- Once married, the man is in charge and expects to always have his way, in everything.
- In Islam, it is okay for a man to marry a Christian woman because it is expected that he will convert her (and be blessed with many virgins in paradise as a result!! – I can’t find the reference for this… but I’m sure there is a reference in the Qu’ran – if you can’t find it, feel free to delete it) – she may not be allowed to practice her own faith.
- That in order to be married “legally” in Islam, you have to be married in the Mosque – my husband , after 1 year of thinking we were married, went as far as refusing to sleep with me until we got married in a mosque. I cried every night.
- Things get extremely complicated and hard when children are in the picture. Circumcision or not? Baby dedication or not? Go to church or mosque? Explaining to a young, confused child why daddy doesn’t believe in Jesus the same way that we do.
- Breaking up a dating relationship is very painful and hard to do… but marrying a Muslim will lead to a lifetime of heartache. Marriage is not to be taken lightly – it is covenant between you and God. It is not meant to be trial and error, as our western society often suggests.
What can a person say to a woman who is dating or thinking of dating a Muslim man?
- Be lovingly supportive – being judgemental will not help at all.
- Pray, pray, and then pray some more that the Holy Spirit will take hold of her heart and re-claim it for Jesus.
- Be honest about your apprehensions, try to introduce her to another Christian woman who is already in a marriage relationship with a Muslim (contact 30-days to find one if you don’t already know one).
- If she’s asking you about it, she’s questioning. Questioning is good. The answers need to come from God, not from you – wait on God with her.
- Despite all the best advice and all the right answers, she might go ahead and marry him – keep loving her and do not give up on her.
- Dating a non-believer of any sort is a symptom of a deeper problem – rebellion of the heart.
Know that God is light in our darkness, healing in our pain, comfort in our suffering. He is stronger and bigger and more powerful than any temptation we have here on earth. By His strength, we can choose to obey that still, small voice in our hearts.
“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits at God’s right hand in the place of honor and power. Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth. For you died when Christ died, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossian 3:1-3, NLT)
A great website for understanding what the Qu’ran says is:
Editors Note: we have the offer of a Christian women wanting to help other women married to Muslim men. Feel free to leave comments and questions below in the comment section for now. We can always start a Marriage forum if we get enough replies.