Daily Topic for November 22, 2009

Psalms 96:5
"For all the gods of the nations are idols-but the Lord made the heavens."

Look at the contrast here: the gods are mere idols of wood, stone and metal. But the Lord is the Creator. That means He created the wood, stone and gold used to make the idols, not to mention the galaxies! As Muslims, the Afshari people know that there is a God of Creation, but they do not fully know His character. To many of them, Allah is too remote to approach. Some resort to animistic practices when they face a problem.

Pray that the Afshari people will know that the Lord is near, and worship Him alone. Pray that soon their skillfully made rugs will reflect the glory of the King of Kings.

Afshari people of Iran and Azerbaijan

Well-known as skilled carpet weavers, about 12,000 Afshari people live in southeast Iran. The men practice animal husbandry, while the women sell their highly prized rugs, runners and decorative pieces. The weave is very tight, creating durable and beautiful carpets in colors such as red, ivory, khaki, burgundy and navy blue. They don’t use knots in the process. The warp strands are used as foundation and the weft strands are woven through and create the strong geometric patterns.

Their large families live in tents hand-woven from black goat hair. They are semi-nomadic, moving between winter and summer pasture lands. In recent decades trucks and motorcycles have replaced camels and horses. Used batteries litter the ground because almost every Afshari family owns a radio and a cassette recorder. They are connected to the world by radio, and they love to listen to music. According to the Joshua Project (www.joshuaproject.org), they are 99.9 percent Muslim.

Learn more at joshuaproject.net

Pray for Christian radio programming in the Afshari dialect of Azerbaijani. Pray that gospel recordings will soon be distributed in their communities. Pray for God to reveal Himself in visions and dreams to these least-reached, unengaged people. Pray that Afshari people who may have studied abroad and become believers in Christ will return to their people and spread the gospel.-JWS

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