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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Behind the Veils of Yemen by Audra Grace Shelby, a Review


Oh –I REALLY enjoyed this book.  I could have read it in an afternoon, however, I mistakenly started reading this on a Monday, and our Mon – Weds is really packed with activities. I finished it this morning – Weds. I’m not sure what I was expecting when I requested this book from  Bethany House as a free review book – maybe an inside look at the Muslim faith? The trials of the American Missionary in Yemen? What I received, are wonderful quotes, heart felt relayed experiences, Audra’s transparent real thoughts, as she doubts her own faith, her own, walk, her own motives. And – How the voice of the Lord pulled her through each step revealing His Truth. I am definitely passing this book on to a friend, already have had it requested, and it might become a gifting Christmas gift to a few of my friends.

My first favorite passage is on page 12, just a few pages into the story, as she sits on a plane, watching men come back from a Holy Experience type holiday – “How long do you think the spiritual high from the Hajj will satisfy you? Will it be enough?” I wanted to ask. I wondered if they were seeking God or simply pursuing self – fulfillment.” – Wow. I had to seek out my own heart on that question. Coming back from Women of Faith. Seeking out new groups that have been created at our church fellowship, activities around town, homeschool studies. Am I still seeking GOD, or seeking self-fulfillment? Are you?

As you read the book – another favorite part was on page 88. I don’t want to get into copy write laws so I won’t quote more – but it talking about a tree- that seemed strong, but had fallen in a windstorm, revealing disease, and a hollow trunk. I too, want to be careful not to just resemble a safe strong climbing tree on the outside.  She relayed this experience to another – about other faiths, but again, I had to take it to heart in my own life.

Oh, and the tears were a flowin on page 102 when the Lord spoke to her, revealing the difference in her faith and those around her – Jesus is Alive – Oh. Please go read this book! I could have underlined a line out of just about every page.

I hope it is ok, but I would like to share one more passage -

“My heart ached as I looked intently at her. I longed for Fatima to experience for herself what she kept trying to experience through me. She wanted my prayers, my strength and my hope, but she wanted to get them her way. When her way was not enough, she relied on me to provide what she was looking for. She saw the relationship I had with God and wanted it, but she would not accept that Jesus Christ was the only way to have it.  She pondered it, but then backed away.”

Oh my dear friend.  Are you looking, attached to someone – seeking self fulfillment – wanting the peace and hope of their life? Does it always seem just out of reach no matter what church you try, denomination you study, book you’ve read, friends you’ve had? Have you looked to Just Christ. Simply Jesus? Jesus alone to find that peace?  I beg you. Read.  This. Book.

Ya, know, the funny thing is, no where in this book do you come to the moment when they share about any “converts”, where anyone got “saved” or that they “rescued” anyone from sin.  It was about their family, learning all of the detailed ways that the Yemen People lived – helping them – sharing their lives – and showing them the Love of Christ.

From the Publishers:

Behind the Veils of Yemen by Audra Grace Shelby
With only prayer and a faith that always seemed too small, Audra Grace Shelby departed with her family on a one-way flight deep into the heart of conservative Islam. Here she recounts her harrowing journey as a Christian woman thrust into a culture dangerously different from her own. From the friendships she forged, to her gnawing doubt and fear, to her offers of hope when her friends' religion failed them, she gives us glimpses into a world most have never seen. And she shows how the grace of God transforms lives--even in the midst of an Islamic stronghold.

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