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Customer Reviews for Chosen Books Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women

Chosen Books Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women

When Shelby and her husband answered God's call to minister in the Middle East, she was fearful---and wondered how God would use her to bring Jesus to conservative Muslims. Offering an eye-opening look at life for Yemeni women, she tells about the friendships she forged and how God's grace touched lives in the heart of Islam. 272 pages, softcover from Chosen.
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Customer Reviews for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Review 1 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Easy-to-read Intro to Muslim Culture

Date:January 3, 2012
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Lehrerin
Location:Roxboro, NC
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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4 out of 5
4 out of 5
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4 out of 5
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With not much more than a wing and a prayer, Audra Grace Shelby, her husband, and their three children headed off to Yemen to serve as Christian missionaries. Feeling God's call but uncertain as to how she could serve her new veiled neighbors, Audra Grace slowly reached out, prayed hard, and began to make a difference in the far East.
Written as a narrative story, this account follows her family from the application process through nearly all of their time abroad. Through serious illnesses, culture shock, severe weather and new languages, Shelby explains how her family adapted and reached out through many differences to share the love of Jesus with their new neighbors.
Shelby truly personalizes the culture through her story. Though many of us may be aware of some oppressive cultural customs that exist in the Middle East, we may not be aware of just how those are actually carried out - and how the women living under these restrictions really feel. This book will both make you aware of our Eastern neighbors and of their great need: need for love, need for prayer, and need for understanding, just to name a few.
Behind the Veils of Yemen would make a wonderful introduction to Muslim culture and the life of an Eastern missionary. Don't miss this book!
I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for a free review.
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Review 2 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Woman's Risks to Bring Jesus to the Muslim Women

Date:December 28, 2011
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Anonymous
Location:St. Paul, MN
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Audra Grace Shelby, in her book, Behind the Veils of Yemen, describes the stark realities of how difficult it is to bridge a relationship in order to witness in a Muslim country. The first thing she did in order to accomplish this was to wear the customary garments of the Muslim women so she could blend in better, though word always seemed to advance before her arrival–a mussihiya [Christian].
Though her faith was challenged at times and she faltered, Audra learned to rely heavily on her trust in and prayers to the Lord to know what and how to do things, what to say, and when. Her personal encounters during a Muslim wedding, the treatment of Muslim women overall, and her personal doubts and fears are all penned to display their life in Yemen. Learning what the women wore under their outer garments was shocking, but gave me a bird’s-eye view of women in general worldwide!
I must admit that at first I thought this was a simple book. But as I thought and prayed about it, I came to realize that I overlooked some simple and major issues. Thus my idea of going oversees to bring Jesus to Muslims has been broadened significantly as Audra dealt with the entrenched mindset of the people and their customs. Little did I understand the difficulties and accommodations that needed to be applied. It opened the door to understand better how to pray for a Christian witnessing in a land hostile to Christians.
The Shelby’s love for the people compelled them to return to the region after their furlough. It reminds me of the verse, “…we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20.
I could easily recommend this book as a tutorial for training for missions to other countries. My thanks to Audra for being transparent in her time as a missionary.
This book was provided by Jim Hart of Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was exchanged.
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Review 3 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

a great insight into how to pray

Date:December 17, 2011
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Kevin and Audra found themselves accepting the calling to go to Yemen to show the Muslims the love of Christ. Audra had a deep desire to get behind the veils of women to tell them about Christ. I was honestly impressed that she would wear the veil so to have a chance to be accepted by them and to be able to talk to them openly. She shares about what some of the women wear under the veil and I was actually surprised. I loved hearing the conversations between the women and Audra and I was very glad that Audra shared her own insecurities throughout the book. She shared when she doubted, when God was silent or when things weren't working as they had thought that it would.
The thing that stuck out to me is how she realized that we (I say we as Christians) weren't praying for the Muslims to come to know the Lord. She talks about how we're not as burdened for them to know Jesus as Lord. After hearing about the women, I understand more now about how the women are viewed, treated, and the conversations they have with their friends. It was interesting to see how they view sickness, and it was painful to see how a baby was mistreated. It was sad to hear how the men take advantage of the women in several ways and how even a woman dressed in a veil can still be looked upon by a guy and lusted after.
I would dare say that Christ followers need to read this book. After reading it, I understand more about how I can pray for other missionaries from the IMB (International Mission Board) who are serving in these areas and for Muslims, in general. It opened my eyes to things that I never realized or understood.
Audra and her husband, Kevin, along with their 3 (now 4 kids) were missionaries to Yemen and later on in Egypt. They have since returned to the U.S. so that their children could attend high school. They are very active in getting God's Word into the Middle East.
__________________
I received this book free from Bethany House Publishing in exchange for my honest review of this book.
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Review 4 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Open, Honest and Passionate

Date:December 14, 2011
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Jamie Little
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Answering God’s call to become missionaries in Yemen meant that Kevin and Audra would pack up their entire family and immerse themselves in a new culture halfway around the world. This move also meant planting her family in a country entrenched in conservation Islam, a religion that had no respect for the Shelby family’s own Christian values and beliefs. While Audra thought that she was ready and that she knew what to expect, she encountered things beyond her wildest imagination, both good and bad.
Beyond the Veils of Yemen chronicles Audra Shelby’s experiences in Yemen; it tells the story of how one woman full of doubt and fear learned to rely on God and trust in Him. Audra beautifully tells the story of how she forged friendships with Yemeni women, discusses what they are like behind closed doors when they shed their veils and shares her heart for the Yemeni people. Story after story in this books shows how her family relied on and trusted in God and how He provided for them and met their needs. This story is written so honestly and passionately, the reader can really feel Audra’s heart and soul poured into it.
I enjoyed getting a glimpse into the life Yemeni women; learning about some of their customs and culture was fascinating. Shelby never came across as demeaning or harsh in her telling of these things. I was amazed at how boldly she shared her faith at times, taking their circumstances and sharing how her belief in God gives her hope and joy. Though she may not have felt like she could see the fruits of her effort at the time Audra Grace Shelby has planted seeds in many lives.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to write a positive review.
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Review 5 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Women behind the veils eclipsed

Date:December 12, 2011
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theLadyLeigh
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
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1 out of 5
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1 out of 5
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To begin: When we consider the title of the book- or more specifically the subtitle- a myriad of questions spring to mind.
*Why would an American family go to Yemen as missionaries?
*How were they put into life threatening situations?
*How was her faith risked? and
*How did she reach out and reach behind those veils?
Those questions along with the cover art immediately drew me in and made me eager to discover what was inside. Unfortunately, by the time I reached the end I really wasn't sure what to make of what I had just read and I can't say I had any of my questions answered satisfactorily.
In the first two chapters of the book we are introduced to several different story lines. As the book opens Audra and her family are flying to the Middle East to begin their missionary journey. The story then jumps back to Audra's response to her husband feeling God's call to overseas missions- in Yemen. We discover that although she was raised on the mission field she is incredulous that God would be calling her husband- and her- to that as well. She resents this new direction and digs in her heels not wanting to follow her husband or God. When she finally 'gives in' it seems it is still with gritted teeth- an attitude I think continues in different ways throughout the book. From there the narrative again jumps, forward a bit, to the Shelby's missionary board candidacy interview where Audra's husband suddenly and unexplainable falls gravely ill. Audra is sent into a tailspin of doubt and anger with God, not understanding what is happening and why. As Audra prays in the hospital chapel she has a vision of God saying her prayers will be answered so she returns to her husband's bedside where he begins to improve. While I firmly believe that God speaks to us through His word and that 'still small voice' I don't know that today He reveals Himself literally as she seems to describe. For me it was rather uncomfortable reading such an 'experience'.
Overall, I'm not sure what this beginning part of the book is meant to convey and how it adds or becomes pertinent to the rest of the story as she only relates them as pre-events and not as a real means to say this is how God changed my heart and led us to his will for our future.
The next section of the book is chapters 3-10 and focus on an 18 month period where the Shelby's are in language school. Audra takes lessons with a newly married young local women, Fatima. This section, which is the bulk of the book, follows Fatima and Audra's relationship. They shop together; attend a Muslim wedding (where the men and women never meet and celebrate separately); they visit other women together and deal with Fatima's marriage, extended family and sick newborn problems together. Sometimes her attempts at influencing Fatima are good. When she discovers Fatima's husband is addicted to pornography -a vice that hurts his wife deeply- she reacts as any of us would condemning the action as wrong for any husband of any culture. When Fatima's first child is born with health issues that would be treatable here in the US but was ignored and passed over with a promise that if Allah willed the child would get better Audra is appaled. The diagnosis (or lack of one)breaks both women's hearts and for the first time Fatima opens up and asks Audra to pray for her son because she believes in the power of and behind her prayers.
This middle part of the book is mostly filled with stories that touch the reader as you get glimpses into the life of a Muslim women and wonder at the hopelessness and bondage of a culture against Christ.
The final four chapters of the book center around the Shelby's finishing language school and beginning over in their permanent city of ministry before going back to the States for Audra to give birth to their fourth child.
When I finished the book I thought "Behind the Veils of Yemen" read more like a excerpts from a personal journal than a inspiring missionary story. To begin with it isn't until the publishers note at the very back of the book that we begin to understand who Audra Grace Shelby is. From the beginning of the book we are thrown into her story without knowing or understanding any of her background that led her to this point in her life. Even after making plain her fighting to stay 'home' we are never given the whole story on how she and her husband came to the decision to go to the field. Once on the field we never settle into her life there and only get snippets of how her family functioned in a very foreign land. Through the course of the book it is never explained how Audra befriended the women she met/ministered to until the end when we learn it was through sewing- a detail that would have made so much more sense if explained earlier.
Also, Audra's attempts at sharing the Gospel and influencing Fatima with Western thinking often come off heavy handed (for lack of a better term) and she scares Fatima off in the beginning. Audra seems to expect instant results and that bothered me. Shouldn't a missionary know ministry on a field like this one is a long term thing where you build bit by bit? Also troubling to me was her seeming forgetfulness/lack of knowledge of some cultural customs that led to roadblocks. It made me wonder if they had been properly prepared for immersion into the culture. On the other hand I was suprised at her acceptance of customs like wearing the hejab and balto (cloak) which are religous symbols of Islam and mark her as being a subject of the very false religon that wars against Christianity. I believe she could have dressed in a completely modest way, giving deference to the culture, without compromising her own religous beliefs- and I wonder at the mission board (assumably) asking this of her.
In the end I felt that "Behind the Veils of Yemen" was not about any of the things I was promised in the title/subtitle. While I did learn a little more about Middle Eastern women this story isn't about these women- it's about Audra. Much of the story I was supposed to get is eclipsed by Audra's fighting God, Audra's fighting the culture, Audra's crises of faith,
and Audra's family's multiple health crises. It leaves the reader wondering where is Audra's relationship with God? Where is Audra showing He makes a difference as she reaches out to these Yemeni women? Where is the hope that sharing Christ should bring? And what was/has been the fruit if the Shelby's labour?
"Behind the Veils of Yemen" causes the reader to ask many questions but leaves them with answers to few of them.
Final Rating: Two Stars
I recieved a copy of this book from the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review and opinion of the product.
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Review 6 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A book to treasure

Date:November 27, 2011
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Anonymous
Location:Coffeyville, KS
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
A missionary woman, responding to God’s call to serve in Yemen – that is what this book is about. Audra Grace Shelby sees her faith challenged as she goes through the initial period of her introduction to a country and people who have so many different customs and habits, but who are, just as the rest of us, people with feelings, interest and worries. A wife, a mother, a friend and a witness to God’s grace and love for Yemeni women, Audra faces difficult moments that shake her emotions and her different roles, but prays to become the tool that would be able to share Jesus in such a way that Muslims would understand. It is easier said than done. There were many risks involved, but she and her family decided to stay faithful to God. She tells about how even her relationship with Jesus changed; she learned to trust Him completely, even when things did not make sense to her and finds solace in the peace that God gives, as a constant companion through hardships.
During the years of her life described in the book, we learn how she befriends Fatima, a woman who teaches her Arabic and the ways of the culture, and introduces Audra to her family (mainly women relatives) and closest circle of friends. She gets a peculiar glimpse at the women behind the veils, who slowly come to accept her (some just agreed to put up with her). The more and more familiar she got with Fatima and the others, the more Audra becomes aware of the heavy burden that restricts Muslim women, going way beyond their clothes; it comes to the fact that they are not even allowed to learn how to read or write, so their faith and ways are a result of what they are told, either by men or by older women who were also just told about the Muslim ways. This fact also translates into further abuse, like not being given the right change when buying groceries in the market (they just do not know how to count), or cheated out of estate ownership or inheritance.
Little by little, Audra becomes a living testimony of how interested God is in having a relationship with us, and bravely does and acts Christian in a society that rejects her and her family. For example, she describes the prayer ritual and how meaningful it is for Muslims to wash before praying. When she asks if she could pray and does not wash, the women around her are shocked, but that allows Audra to explain that Jesus is not interested in how clean our outside is, but is rather interested in the cleanliness of our heart. With precious moments like this one, she is able to tick the women who have been in such a need of love and acceptance.
Her story does not talk much about her husband’s ministry, about which I often wondered; however, don’t let that hinder you from reading this book. It is a treasure. Personally, it has reminded me of how blessed we are to live in a time and place where we are free to learn and study the Bible in so many different ways. It gives a wonderful picture of what the personal life of a missionary is – a fact that would help us pray for those who have been sent and their specific needs. Also, it is a challenge for Christians, to love and see people more the way God does, and not the way we do, taking away prejudice and preconceived notions, and just loving them the way they are – after all, Jesus died for all of us, equally and with no distinction.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. In no way has this influenced my opinion on the book or on the author.
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Review 7 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Encouraging and Challenging

Date:November 21, 2011
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Josi
Location:Baker City, OR
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
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It took a little while to get into "Behind the Veils of Yemen" by Audra Grace Shelby, though I can't put my finger on why. Perhaps its that Audra has the doubts and fears that any sane American mom would have when considering moving the family to Yemen, but, we have no sense of her past and calling...its just suddenly here's this family, this mom, going to Yemen, and she's sure its the right thing to do, but she gives the reader no background on who she is, her experiences, her testimony, or the walk with God that brought her to this place. Other than that, Shelby’s “Behind the Veils of Yemen” challenged and encouraged me. I truly admire and am inspired by the sacrifice that families make in overseas missions, particularly in countries so very culturally foreign to the United States. Shelby’s testimony of living faith- through her husband’s sudden and mysterious illness, her feelings of shortcoming as a missionary, her daughter’s health issues, and her unexpected and difficult fourth pregnancy, all served to challenge me to have greater faith in my own walk with God. Audra Shelby and her family’s perseverance in ministry, despite the many difficulties inherent to embracing an utterly different lifestyle, language, and culture, encouraged me in my own ministry and certainly provoked me to greater intercession for those who are now trying to bring the light of the Gospel to Muslim countries. Shelby’s story also shed light on the great need for more prayer, more support, and more workers in the Middle East. I would recommend this book without hesitation to anyone who seeks a greater understanding of the challenges of overseas missions, or the veil of oppression and darkness that covers Middle Eastern women.
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
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Review 8 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Tagline Misleading, but very good book

Date:November 21, 2011
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Nikole Hahn
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
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4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
“Missionaries are not supposed to have doubts, Lord. But these questions worm into my head, and I cannot seem to keep them out. Help me to see beyond them to You.” Audra wrote this on page 87 in talking about her doubts that if she had been raised as her Yemeni friend, Fatima in Islam, would Audra, too, believe strongly in Islam? Later chapters answered that question.
Audra Grace Shelby is a missionary with her husband in Yemen. She writes of all the health problems that plagued them and the difficulties, but also the love she feels for the Yemeni people. Fatima is the woman who teaches her Arabic daily. When Fatima gives birth to a baby boy, she sees the God of the Bible work miracles as the Christian women, including Audra pray for the baby. Fatima learns about Jesus, but still holds firmly to Islam. Audra suffers from new missionary jitters, feeling uncertain, and trying to be bold in proclaiming the truth. But still the above question confused and worried her until God answered that prayer.
“I remembered more questions I had asked the Lord: If I had been raised to believe Islam, would I be a devout Muslim instead of a devout Christian? Was the difference only in what we had been taught? In the quiet of my beating heart, the answer whispered clearly: You asked for our crates to arrive the week after the children began school. The Boones’ crates were delivered on time, but your crates were lost, beyond the reach of man. Yet I knew where they were and when they would be delivered. Now you have your crates, delivered at the time you asked. Only I could do that.” (pg. 101-102)
God created us. He knows the very hair of our heads. I suppose I had a similar question and Audra answered it by telling us of her questions. The book is fascinating and colorful. This book used all five senses. From my comfortable American home, I walk Audra’s steps and experience Yemen. There was only one issue.
I expected more serious problems in the Middle East than a riot. Teaching Christianity is dangerous in the Middle East, and yet Audra seemed to encounter little danger. The tag line on the front of the book says, “How an American woman risked her life, family and faith to bring Jesus to Muslim women.” Besides visiting solitary villages and speaking to Muslim women and participating in their culture, Audra reports very little danger in that (though I’m sure there was). I think if they are going to have an exciting teaser on the front of the book, the book should live up to those expectations. The book in spite of the let down is worth reading. I enjoyed getting to know the people of Yemen through Audra’s eyes and how she challenged me in my faith. Book given by publisher to review.
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Review 9 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

God works

Date:November 18, 2011
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luv2readjen
Location:Lisle, IL
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In 2008, my husband had sepsis, and he went into septic shock. Until then, I had no idea what that meant or how it would change my life. Ultimately, my husband was hours from death when the antibiotics finally started working. The doctors had told me there was nothing more they could really do – it was no longer in their control. The first chapters of Audra’s book took me right back to that place. I know exactly how she felt, in some respects, as she went through this incredibly difficult and unbelievably hard experience. My husband is fine now, but he still has almost no memory of the experience. I didn’t have Jesus then. I barely made it. Audra’s story resonated with me in a profound way, because she DID have Jesus, and in the end her experience led her to a radically different place.
Audra and her husband had already figured out they were going to Yemen as missionaries, but the situation of the sepsis changed how they approached that journey. I think there are few places where missionary work is more hazardous than the Middle East, and as Audra’s family began their work there, the obstacles were enormous. What helped them through it, what gave their faith legs, was the knowledge that they had been through the fire and Jesus kept them. Having faced a life-threatening illness before they left, they knew that Jesus would be with them every step. Even when they faced incredible situations and difficult challenges in their work, they saw the hand of God in the small details.
I recommend this book, because it offers a picture of the real ways that Jesus works in the world today. He loves all people – the Americans who have so much and the Islamic women who have so little. Nothing is too hard for him, and not only will he work in the midst of seemingly impossible situations, he does it through us, broken people who find ourselves worthy only in the work of the cross. What an awesome God!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255
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Review 10 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Convicting and Encouraging

Date:November 14, 2011
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Hannah Jane
Location:Alabama
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Synopsis:
"I had envisioned an easier place, such as a village near a beach in the Caribbean. But God was leading us to a place plagued with poverty and sickness and strict adherence to Islamic law, a place where evangelism was forbidden." (pg. 15)
Imagine traveling far away from everyone you know, from everything you own, from everyone who supports you. The only people near you who speak English are your family and your language teacher.
You might seem to have it bad off, but others there have it worse. First of all, they know not the love of the Saviour, and so everything else is even more bleak than it would otherwise be. Second, they are persona non gratia - simply because they are women.
Their place in the world is confined to a narrow set of rules, a world ruled by might makes right. They are considered to be less valuable than men, and if their husband, father, or brother decides to murder them, it is very likely that the civil government will only support the murderer.
Enter the world of Islam.
My Thoughts
"I looked up at the neighboring windows. I was eager to meet the women I knew were inside. I had plans to share Christ, and I was ready to get started, even if it was against Yemeni law." (pg. 46)
This book made for both an interesting read as well as an informative read. Filled with the thoughts and remembrances of one missionary as she struggles to fulfill the great commission abroad, it is both convicting and encouraging.
Convicting because of the great hardships which so many go through. Convicting because it can be so easy to take for granted the ease which America and the western world has offered me.
Encouraging because I love to hear of those who are seeking to bring the knowledge of God's wonderful plan of salvation to those who are lost. Encouraging because the various answers to prayer are wonderful little ways in which God shows that he cares.
I enjoyed reading the testimony of the missionary as well as her thoughts on those who she was witnessing to. My heart filled with pity for those in Yemen and other Islamic countries who are oppressed and afflicted. May God give them his peace.
There are a couple little things which make me recommend this book for teens - adults.
Rating:
"I slowly walked to the office door and stopped to look back through the uncurtained window. A green neon sign flashed in the distance from the pinnacle of the neighborhood mosque, illumination the mosque's presence. I stared at it several minutes, thinking about the Light God had sent to illuminate His presence. Yemen had yet to see and understand that the Light is Jesus." (pg. 179)
9 out of 10 stars ★★★★★★★★★☆
Read an Excerpt & Purchase a Copy:
"I sobbed into my hands. Lord, send help! We cannot tell them by ourselves. We are no match for their need. I thought about the mission group that had canceled. Lord, can't they reschedule? Can't you send them again? We are only a few buckets of water when the people need and ocean. Help them come, Lord. Help them come." (pg. 219)
Note:
I was given a free copy of this book by Chosen Books publishers in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 11 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great insight of one woman's experience

Date:November 10, 2011
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SFaith
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
"Behind the Veils of Yemen" by Audra Grace Shelby, is a fascinating and eloquent true story, of Audra's and her family, personal experience, when they relocated to Yemen, to begin work there as missionaries.
Filled with rich details of the Yemeni culture from meals to wedding traditions to basic phrases that are customary to greet each other, what makes, "Behind the Veils of Yemen" stands out, is that this isn't about just the women of Yemen, that Audra encountered and ministered, but how her and her family life there, were transformed and their faith in God was strengthened by their personal experiences.
The stories she shares are haunting and presents a look, "Behind the Veils of Yemen" , that those in the States often don't hear or maybe only hear very brief glimpses of and the way, Audra, writes, is a story that is filled with strength and hope, in and through our Father in Heaven.
I felt that the ending of the book was a bit rushed and yearned to find out more about what happen after the events in Yemen, but the rest of the book, is a powerful testimony to the spirit of faith, hope and persistence.
The reader will find themselves hanging on to the detail of daily life of the Yemeni culture as shared by Audra and the complicated interactions she find, living as a foreigner among the Yemeni people.
Her experiences are both eye-opening, heart breaking, convicting and live readers asking, how strong are they to be able to do the same as Audra and her family.
Although the book shares about the Muslim women that Audra encountered and befriended, if you are expecting a "missionary book" about conversions, Audra doesn't focus on that; Instead, she focuses on the real life struggles and experiences of being a missionary family in the Middle East, learning both the languages and customs, sharing personal insights into the culture and on the trials that her and her family personally endure of times of sickness that they had encountered and how as Christians, sharing the Gospel with other faiths and culture.
This isn't really a book that focuses a lot on the Yemen women or culture, but rather is more like a personal biography of one missionary families experience, but it is still a compelling and fascinating read to look into.
***This book has been provided courtesy of Bethany House.***
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Review 12 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

you won't learn about the women of Yemen

Date:November 6, 2011
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bookwomanjoan
Location:Oak Harbor, WA
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
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2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Audra begins with their interview at The International Mission Board and Kevin getting seriously ill, going into septic shock. She prayed and God healed him, although he did get ill again, later. Finally, years later, they were on their way to Sana'a, Yemen.
Audra tells us about her pregnant Arabic instructor, Fatima, and going to a wedding ceremony (just the women) where the women are very forward in their questions (“What kind of birth control do you use?”). She attends a grieving ceremony and struggles with the view of fate (the will of God) the women have. When Fatima's son is born, he has trouble but gets better after Audra and other Christians pray for him. Audra prayed for their crates to arrive after school started and they did (they were “lost” temporarily).
After six months of language studies they were allowed time off so they went to the Red Sea for a week in a hotel where their daughter experienced something like seizures. They visited doctors then took her to Cyprus to a neurologist, while at a regional missions meeting. Audra shares her frustration with God. She finally trusted God completely. An MRI showed an irregularity in the left temporal lobe of the brain and she was placed on anti-seizure medication.
Audra was able to share Bible stories with Fatima but she retained her Muslim faith.
The eighteen months of language studies over, they had a choice of places to work and went to Hudaydah.
Kevin got hepatitis and the kids got a virus. Audra shares her frustration as they had tried to meet with locals for three months with no success. Audra understood from God that that Christians were not deeply desiring that Muslims come to faith. They did not have the heart of God.
Audra tried making friends with the few Western women living in the city of 450,000. While that was not successful, Audra did meet women in a nearby village.
After several months in the Tihama they returned to the United States to speak to churches. Four weeks later they returned to Yemen, Audra being pregnant (at age 42). Complications (diabetes, kidney infection, high blood pressure) developed and she had to go back to the States for the delivery. They returned to Yemen.
They served nine years in the Middle East then returned to the United States where they remain actively involved in reaching those in the Middle East.
This is an odd “missionary” book. At times it is much more about Audra and her family than about the mission work. The book starts out with over thirty pages about Kevin's illness. Audra takes four pages to describe rescuing a giant sea turtle stranded on the beach. Audra describes many visits with local women, quoting dialogue for pages. But I don't feel I really got to know the women of Yemen, except Fatima, Audra's language helper.
If you have read many missionary biographies, this one will probably disappoint you. If you want to really learn about the women behind the veils in Yemen, this book will probably disappoint you. If you want to learn about Audra, all her thoughts, the illnesses of her family members, the birth of her last child, then this is the book for you.
This is not an uplifting book in that there is no record of any conversion to Christ. My oldest sister and her husband were career missionaries in Oman and I know from their experience conversion is rare. And speaking of my missionary sisters, one was in the Suez while the crisis of 1956 took place. We didn't know for a week if she was alive or not. My other sister was in Iraq and had to escape from Baghdad in the night because of a coup. Compared to those experiences my sisters had, this book was rather boring.
I received a copy of this book from Chosen Books for the purpose of this review.
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Review 13 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Geat book

Date:November 2, 2011
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cathy
Location:Kansas
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Behind the Veils of Yemen is a book about a missionary family who leave the comforts and safety of the USA and answer the call of God to "Go Ye into the world and teach the Gosple". After they recieve the call and start to train for their assignment they continually are tested but God continues to call them and they answer that call and go into Yemen. Audra and her family learn that praying is not too little to do when faced with the daily life and death decisions that they must face but is the biggest thing that one can do in any crisis situation. God still hears one still small voice. Audra learns the language and the culture as she goes through the 3 years that this story covers. She learns to love these people of Yemen-God's people, and to take to the women of Yemen the message of Jesus, the Messiah. That God loves them and sent His only Son to die so that they, women of Yemen could have life and have it abundantly. These were women who were treated as objects by their own family. Women who most likely had been treated badly since their birth. Women who had no chance to ever be treated well by their family ever had a God and Messiah who loved them and wanted eternity for them. To these women and their families Audra and her family brought hope and and planted the seeds of faith into their hearts.
I really liked this book. It helps me to see into the lives of these Moslem women and help to understand the culture that can only be learned by close relationship with them. It told their story from a Christian's perspective but in a loving way not filled with fate as so often is heard even on the Christian media outlets. We cannot preach of God's love with hate filled words. Jesus taught us through example to love our enemies and we cannot improve on that. God does not just call us to do great things. Sometimes He calls us to do little things and He makes them great. We must answer God's call in our lives as He asks.
I recieved this book free for this review from Bethany House Publishing.
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Review 14 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Yemen is Still Behind the Veil

Date:October 31, 2011
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Paulette Halliday
Location:Canada
Age:55-65
Gender:female
I recently read Audra Shelby's Behind the Veils of Yemen. My goal in reading the book was to learn about the lifestyle of Moslem women in Yemen. I wanted to get a feel for the culture and country. And since I was under the impression it is illegal to go to Yemen for the stated purpose of evangelising the populace, I was curious to find out on what pretext the Shelby's were entering the country.
I did not learn overly much about the people of Yemen, men or women. I also did not come away with a feel for the culture or country. I have no more sense now than before about Yemen's geography, or demography, economy or government. I have been under the impression that Yemen was one of those very rich little countries where oil is the basis for strong economy. I knew from the news that some of Yemen's people were trying to bring in a more democratic government, but I wanted to know why their wealth, religion, and form of government were not enough to keep the people satisfied.
The book did not answer any of my questions, even the one about what the Shelby's were supposed to be doing in the country other than being missionaries on language learning assignment. The book had several major themes, such as overcoming health difficulties to get to the field, continuing to overcome health problems while learning the language, and overcoming emotional/spiritual battles concerning the strength of Audra's Christian faith when compared to the strength of her Moslem friend's faith.
Since I was once a member of Audra's religious group, I understand her pain. Once I learned that I was living in a very narrow interpretation of God's Word, the Bible, and that many other intelligent and reliable Christian people held other views, I began to question why it would be that I in my little group would have all the correct answers and everyone else in the world was wrong. I decided to allow for other people being right sometimes and that all were entitled to their opinions and interpretations the same as I was entitled to mine. The truth is that had I been born in Yemen of Yemenese parents who were Moslem and who reared me as a Moslem, I would be Moslem. I would not have somehow just known about God from a western fundamentalist Christian point of view.
Children begin their lives soaking in the culture they are raised in. Of course their faith will be strong in the only way they have learned. Christianity and Islam have many similarities in that they both believe they are the only right way and that their God expects them to convert the rest of the world to their belief system. This belief is going to lead to conflict. Unless we come to an agreement to live in peace in spite of our faith difference, there is going to be war. There is no easy answer to this dilemma. My solution is this. Both Christianity and Islam have many principles and instructions calling for us to love our fellow humans. Both faiths call for moral and kind living. If we would agree to put the stress of our teaching on the principles of living our faith with such enthusiasm and energy that our lives would show forth the praise of God's glory, there would be no need to seek to convert either Moslem or Christian. We would soon be seen to be serving the same God.
There is a line in Steel Magnolias where Dolly Parton says to Daryl Hanna, "God don't care which church you go to as long as you show up." Ms. Hanna has been in a terrific flap to get to her own church to take a casserole for a bereaved family. But the truth is, Ms Hanna can take the casserole to the family without the church. She can take it just because she is a caring human being. Sitting in a particular church is not as important as how you live Monday to Saturday.
Audra's struggles with learning the language, overcoming health problems, over coming spiritual questions turn out to be the substance of the story, which of course did not meet what I wanted to learn about. However, Behind the Veils of Yemen is a compelling read. The book is reasonably well written and edited and has a personal quality. The book is worth reading, but not as a book to learn a lot about Yemen.
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Chosen, a division of Baker Publishing Group".
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Review 15 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Lady of Great Faith

Date:October 27, 2011
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B. A. Palmer
Location:Tennessee
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Behind the Veils of Yemen is a story of a courageous young woman and her family leaving everything familiar, comfortable and safe behind to take a journey into a country that most of us will never go to or even want to go to. She is deep in the heart of the Muslim country, traditions and life that places zero value on a woman. She shares the love of God with the women she meets and lets the light of her Savior, Jesus, shine thru her everyday life.
She is extremely honest in her life and faith and some days of low faith. She shows how she gets back on track with her faith as she deals with life that is not normal and everyday for most of us in the United States. Her heartfelt emotions bring the tears on as you go thru this journey with her. I so love watching the hand of God go before her in different avenues of her journey. I especially appreciate the way she tried to blend in and be a part of the women there without giving up her faith, but giving a part of her faith to a culture of women that so needed her. Trusting God without knowing the whys is an everyday part of her life but it is a very hard part of her life.
I now know more about how to pray for the missionaries and the countries they go to serve in. Thank you Shelby!
This book has been provided courtesy of Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group. All opinions are strickly my own and a positive review was not a requirement.
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Review 16 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Trusting God Must be Enough

Date:October 26, 2011
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Wanda Myers
Location:Dublin, TX
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Behind the Veils of Yemen
By Audra Grace Shelby
Well, I always knew I wasn’t missionary material and reading this book confirmed it! I can love people but I have a hard time with dirt, germs and foreign food. However that does not keep me from wanting to see people reached for God, and I guess that is why I love to read a good missionary story.
This is one woman’s narrative of going into the Islamic community and blending in with the women there so that she could show them Jesus. She did literally become like one of them; learning their customs, mode of dress, and language. She made deep friendships with these women and saw a side of Islam that we never hear about. She also gave great insight into the heart and mind of a missionary and how they can leave it all behind to go to a foreign culture. Written in a beautiful and captivating style, this book is sure to capture the attention of any person who reads it. I read my copy in one sitting.
I always hope to walk away from a good book having learned something that applies directly to my life—wanting it to touch me in a positive way. This book did that but not in the way I expected. Although the story of the missionaries’ lives and the people they ministered to was touching, that is not where God met me. Instead He used this book and author to speak to me about a struggle I have been going through in my own life. God asked me personally, “Do you trust me enough without having to know why?” and I realized that I need to work on that one. This is a book that I will not soon forget. Read it—you will not be disappointed.
I received this complimentary copy from Bethany House Publishers for this review. A positive review was not required and the opinions expressed here are my own.
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Review 17 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Awaken your Faith. Read this book!

Date:October 6, 2011
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Christianfictionaddiction
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I will be the first to admit that I prefer a good fiction novel to a non-fiction book. But something about Behind the Veils of Yemen called to me to choose it first from the stack of books sitting on my desk waiting to be read. I am so glad I picked it up, as the author's heart-felt, grace-filled writing captured me from the first page. Shelby's book is unbelievably moving, a very well-written account of a true story that has the potential to change lives. I got so wrapped up in the story that I read it in one sitting!
What I appreciated most about this book is that the author does not attempt to hide behind religious platitudes, doesn't attempt to pretend to be the "perfect" Christian who is untouched by earthly worries. Instead, her writing is honest and raw, and reveals the depth of the emotions of her heart, her struggles to believe in moments of crisis but also the triumph of God's grace and the power of the name of Jesus. The truth contained in the pages of this book will need time to mull over, to think about what God is trying to reveal to us personally through it's message. And it would be impossible to read this book without coming away with a new appreciation for those living in Muslim countries, people like you and I, people desperate to know that God loves them and that his love is not dependent on their own actions.
I love what the author writes near the beginning of her book, where she states about God that "He had chosen me not because of who I was, but because of who He is". Now, there is a God worth serving, a God who loves us just the way we are, but who doesn't leave us there either, a God who chooses to use us to change the world, even when we don't deserve that honor. Thank-you Jesus!
I highly recommend this book and give it 5 out of 5 stars. If you don't plan on reading anything else this year, please do read this book!
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Chosen, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
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Review 18 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:September 27, 2011
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Frenchie
Location:Alabama
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This book is exciting, inspiring, and real. The author speaks to many difficulties anyone could face while sharing how she responded. I'll be ready for another book by this writer.
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Review 19 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

An inspirational must read!

Date:September 10, 2011
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Chris Hartley
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
"Behind the Veils of Yemen" is the story of an American woman who has a daring love, a caring love, and a sharing love for the women of the Middle East. Audra Shelby makes herself courageously available to Muslim women who are shrouded in darkness, both in body and spirit, for the sake of the gospel. In spite of various intense and personal trials she is willing to be uncomfortable, inconvenienced, and spent in order to have a part in advancing God's kingdom. This book will inspire each reader to press into God, and press on for His glory. I highly recommend taking this journey into the world of unreached women, led by one who longs to share the heart of her faithful God.
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Review 20 for Behind the Veils of Yemen: How an American Woman Risked Her Life, Family, and Faith to Bring Jesus to Muslim Women
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Gives much information

Date:August 30, 2011
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Granny C
Location:Bethany, MO
Age:Over 65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Enjoyed the book, read it almost completely in the first set down read period. Know much more about the ways of the Yemen people and how they need to hear the gospel.
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