Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

After a few people had recommended this book to me, I was given it by my father to read. Or was it my Father?

Hosting, now three, Afghan asylum-seeking teenagers in our home, it was a good idea to gain greater understanding of the Muslim faith, beyond that which they were telling us. The very open explanation of Nabeel’s journey from Islam to Christianity has given me an insight into, not only the beliefs of Islam, but also the culture which surrounds it.

Nabeel’s story outlines in detail his early life and devoted parents, who spent considerable time investing in him as an individual and as a young Muslim. They encouraged his enquiring mind and engaging intellect. The book takes us through his years-long journey to a living faith in Jesus.

A good deal of Nabeel’s resistance to the call of Jesus on his life, was his concern about how his family would react. After all, the reverence of Allah was the central point of their life. He saw his father as his spiritual leader and as a family they were committed to prayer and studying.

Surrounded at University by deep thinking Christians, who knew their Bibles so well they could debate, at his speed and at his level, never pushing but always being ready with an answer or a challenge for him to think and ponder. The story that he tells us, takes us through one by one the arguments he put up in resistance, and the responses he received from those around him. He unpacks the difference between the honour/shame and innocence/guilt paradigms; works through the momentous shift bought about by the 9/11 bombings and reaction from the West; how a Muslim regards the idea of a triune God; the resurrection and the humanity of Christ and unpacks elements of the Bible and the Quran and how it impacted his doctrines.

“I’d lived my whole life with a vibrant confidence. Islam, my beliefs, my family, my words, and my actions, all converged into one point: me. I had been authentic and transparent, able to speak my mind and to live my beliefs, freely and fully. But now? Now I was a shell, outwardly steadfast in Islam while inwardly a torrent of confusion. The honour/shame paradigm hindered me from sharing my inner turmoil, rendering me unable to speak to my friends or family about my struggle without further destabilising my life.” p.248

At the Flame Supporters weekend in March this year, we heard from Jason Mandryk (Operation World), that it will take a prayer movement to change a prayer movement. Islam is a prayer movement, and we need to be prepared and understand the tenets and beliefs of those we pray for. Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus is a straightforward read and has given me plenty of food for thought, boosted my grasp of Islam and assisted me in deciphering the background and motivations of the three lads living with us.

Reviewed by: Rebecca Benfield
ISBN-10: 0310526663 Available from Amazon
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