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Recently I asked a friend why he and his family had come to Turkey. He replied “We came to Turkey because God called us to Turkey to share the message of the gospel of peace and to see God working in the lives of Turkish people bringing them into relationship with him.

My friend also added that they had discovered a sad story about a man who lived in a remote eastern province of Turkey had requested a visit from someone at the Bible Correspondence Course in Turkey.

Sadly by the time someone was finally found to visit this man, he had died. He had been waiting for a visit. I just find it unbelievably sad that a person seeking to know the truth about salvation passes away before he hears the message.

I have heard of this sort of thing before, Hudson Taylor who spent a good part of his life in China was asked by a Chinese man who came to faith in Christ “How long have you known about this truth and why has it taken you so long to tell us”? Taylor’s reply was “many years”.

How many more are yearning to hear the message of the salvation before it is too late?

So I will leave you now with one question “Who will go?” and a few verses from Isaiah 6 vs. 5 -8

‘Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.  With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”

Then I heard the voice of the Lord “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”

And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Pray that more people will come and share the message of the gospel with the people of Turkey.

The first signs that Ramazan is about to begin, are not the queues stretching from the many bread shops in Turkish neighbourhoods across the land, but the sign in the evening sky of the 'crescent moon'.

The fasting actually starts the following morning, when Muslims rise early morning to eat their their breakfast before sunrise. They will not eat again until sundown, after Iftar is declared, that will be the daily pattern for the next 30 days.

Fasting during Ramazan is one of the 'Five Pillars of Islam and one of the highest forms of Islamic worship. Muslims fast as an act of faith and worship to God.

The name Ramadan is derived from the Arabic word ramida or ar-ramad, denoting intense scorching heat and dryness. Some say it is so called because Ramadan scorches out the sins with good deeds, just as the sun burns the ground.

The last ten days of Ramazan are considered special, particularly the 27th night, known as the Night of Power!! Muslims believe that this is when Muhammad received the first revelations of the Muslim holy book the Qur'an and for many marks a heightened spiritual intensity, where they spend evenings praying and reciting passages from the Qur'an.

It is my hope and prayer that during this Ramazan, Muslims across Turkey and throughout the world will encounter the 'risen Christ', either through dreams and visions or through conversation with believers of Jesus. Perhaps those many Muslims who have received Incils or DVDs, will dust them off and allow God's word to speak to them and give them renewed hope to discover and enter into relationship with the 'living God'! 

This week I thought I would write about the issue of Turkish women and their household cleaning habits and compare this with the cleanliness of the soul.   

I am not sure what you know about the subject, but 'Washing the windows' from the outside … seven stories up. It is a common site in Turkey: women clinging to the window frame as they place their feet precariously on the window ledge. They may be on the ground floor of their apartment building or, in some cases, seven floors up, as shown in the photo. 

In any case, there is no limit to the lengths a Turkish woman will go to make sure the home is spotless and the windows gleaming inside and out.

But it is not just windows and houses that have to be clean in Turkey. Being clean and being perceived by others as being clean are very important aspects of Turkish culture. In fact, if you go into a supermarket in Turkey, cleaning products take up a third of supermarket aisles. In a British supermarket, biscuits and chocolate take up a similar amount of space.

There is a mentality in Turkey that a house needs to be perceived as clean, as the level of cleanliness speaks directly about the owners. This mentality even carries over into their faith. Turks seem to constantly try to do things so that before God they will be perceived as being clean and worthy of heaven. Mosque attendance, dress code, prayer and fasting are all things done so that they can be identified as being clean, good people.

Pray that many Turks will come to know Jesus, the only One who can fully make us clean.