The Maldives is a country torn between two worlds. Many think of it as a holiday destination of paradise, while on the other hand, the country follows a strict form of Islam and struggles with unrest and political challenges.
Islamic extremism is increasing in this nation, and yet, it remains very closed-off, both to the gospel going in and information coming out (so we know how to pray specifically for them).
We hope this prayer guide for the Maldives will help you learn more about this nation and empower you to pray for it:
1. Maldives is a beautiful island, rich in coral and fishes. It is famous as a tourist destination with sandy white beaches and clear water. But Maldives is also on the Open Doors World Watch List of countries where believers are most persecuted for their faith in Christ. It has been one of the regular Top 15 countries on the list for many years.
- Pray for the handful of persecuted believers to live a victorious Christian life in the midst of persecution; that they would be empowered to die to self and live in Christ’s new life.
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” (Matthew 16:24)
2. Did you know that there is no church in Maldives? The handful of believers have to meet in secret. There is no Bible in the Dhivehi language, only translated portions of a few books. “Until the whole Bible is complete, there is no hope for Maldives,” laments a secret believer.
- Pray for the Bible to be translated into the Dhivehi language so these believers will experience the reality of God and the revelation of His love and grace through His Word.
“Your Word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” (Psalm 119:105)
3. The country brags about being 100% Muslim. Being a Maldivian means being a Muslim; there is no other way. They do not celebrate Christmas or Good Friday or Resurrection Sunday because they do not know Jesus! Sharing Jesus to a Maldivian Muslim will result in persecution. It is high risk and fraught with danger.
- A missionary shared that Maldivians can only be reached with the gospel one at a time because of the high risk. So, pray for each Maldivian to have a dream or see a vision of the Man in White (Jesus) and be led to believers who will be bold enough to share Jesus with them.
“I will pour out My Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.” (Joel 2:28)
4. Mission outreach to Maldivians is very limited. It is difficult to find Christian workers with a vision to reach the lost in Maldives. This unwillingness may stem from the fact that the ministry here is laborious and takes a long time to see the results in new believers. And because of its small population of less than half a million, the tiny country is often overlooked by mission agencies.
- Pray for God to send more missionaries and evangelists into Maldives. Pray for them not to be so focused on making converts but on building genuine relationship with the people. Though the soil is hard and rocky, it can become fertile if missionaries persist and persevere in their toil and have the faith to believe God for signs, wonders and miracles.
“The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” (Matthew 9:37-38)
5. Many Maldivians feel trapped living on the island. They want to leave the country because there is no freedom. They seek solace in smoking and drugs, especially young people. Local media reported that drug abuse has become the biggest societal issue in the country. There is not a single household in the Maldives that is not affected by the terrors drugs carry –crime and gang-related violence.
- Pray for Maldivians to experience freedom from the bondage of sin, in the Name of Jesus.
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18)
6. The Maldivian family structure is broken by unfaithfulness and adultery. Nearly half of all marriages end in divorce. Marriage is not honored. Fidelity is something alien to them.
- A missionary couple shared, “We reach them one at a time with hug therapy. As we hug them, we speak love into their heart using Jesus’ Name. A hug is like an open door to help them experience genuine love.” Pray for God to use faithful Christian couples to open the doorway of the hearts of Maldivian couples to know the God who created love and marriage to unite husband and wife to be one flesh. (Genesis 2:24)
Speak 1 Corinthians 13 – LOVE – over the people.
7. What looks like paradise from the outside is deeply broken on the inside. People are not only hurting, but they may even lose their homeland in a few decades from now. The country of 1,200 islands will be among the first to be swallowed by the rising sea level due to global warming.
- Pray for God’s mercy on the nation and His healing on the people. Pray for them to heed the call of the Lord in their land.
“May the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you rule the peoples with equity and guide the nations of the earth.” (Psalm 67:4)
RAMADAN: PRAY FOR THEM
Ramadan in 2020 will start on Friday, the 24th of April and will continue for 30 days until Saturday, the 23rd of May. During Ramadan, Muslims fast and pray five times a day (at dawn, midday, late afternoon, sunset and evening) in order to draw closer to Allah and earn forgiveness. During Ramadan please pray for Maldives and the Muslim world, you can help Christians follow Jesus and make Him known in the darkest places.
Pray that God will cause Islamic countries around the world to put in place wise and effective measures to fight against Covid-19 and protect their people, especially as Ramadan approaches.