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Book Review: I dared to call Him Father by Bilquis Sheikh with R.H. Schneider

I Dared to Call Him Father is the fascinating true story of Bilquis Sheikh, a prominent Muslim woman. Her unusual journey to a personal relationship with God turned her world upside down-and put her life in danger. 

Originally published in 1978, the book has sold 300,000 copies and is a classic in Muslim evangelism. The 25th anniversary edition includes an afterword by a missionary friend of Bilquis who plays a prominent role in the story and an appendix on how the East enriches the West. All comments are the authors own.

Reviewed by:

Melissa Burger

In a sentence tell us about yourself:

Follower of Christ, Wife, Sister, Aunt, Friend, Road runner, Hiker, Karate student, part-time Unisa student and therapist.

What drew you to read this book?

Actually, my Senior Manager while I was still working in the corporate world, suggested the book to me. I have re-read this book many times since then. The fact that is the true story of a formerly aristocratic Muslim woman in Pakistan who gave herself completely to God; and eventually became a Christian missionary and the fact that it was so popular that it was translated into 26 languages, definitely hooked me initially.

What impact did this book make on your life?

At different times it has made different impressions on me, but my initial awe of what really IS possible when you just give it all to God, has never left me. Madame Sheikh’s reverence of God, Our Almighty Father, is beautiful to read and His search and pursuit of her reminds me time and again how He calls to each of us, regardless of culture, faith or background to follow Him.

In a paragraph what is the main point of the book?

God calls each of us, across all ‘boudaries’ to be His children. He really does have the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless Love for each of His children that the gospel song sings of. Trusting God, listening to His voice and following Him is not always easy (Madame Sheikh was persecuted, lost her wealth and her social standing as well as her family) but He never forsakes us and what falls away is no comparison to the miracles, the joy and peace and love we gain from following Him.

Who would benefit from reading this book?

Someone wanting to know more about the how-to of listening for God’s voice. Also, someone who needs to be strengthened in the face of adversity in following Him. Someone who is curious about the Muslim faith in terms of the issue of converting to Christianity or who has a heart for reaching out to the Muslim community. Anyone who loves an amazing, awe-inspiring true story that centres around the Father’s love for us.

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