A Review of the book, In the Land of Blue Burqas
by Candice Johnson
In the fall of 2012, I was listening to a radio interview of “Kate McCord”, the author of In the Land of Blue Burqas. I was drawn into the interview as I realized “Kate McCord” was a pseudonym, the pen-name of a blue-eyed, middle-aged, Christian woman who answered God’s call to leave America and move to Afghanistan as a humanitarian aid worker. Writing under a pen-name was necessary to protect herself and her Afghan Muslim friends and acquaintances who so openly engaged in conversation with her.
After listening to that radio interview, I knew I had to read “Kate McCord’s” book, In the Land of Blue Burqas. I wanted to know how a Christian woman graciously and faithfully proclaimed Jesus in an openly Muslim, Christian-persecuting country. Throughout the book, McCord emphasizes just how carefully she must choose her words when asked about her culture and her faith. It was fascinating to read how she answered spiritual questions asked by her Muslim friends. Such questions as:
- What do you believe happens when you die?
- Why don’t you pray namaz (Arabic prayers, 5 times a day)?
- Why won’t you become a Muslim?
- What must a person do to become a Christian?
In the Land of Blue Burqas also explains what the Muslim Quran says about Adam and Eve, the Honorable Jesus Messiah, the Virgin Mary, and the angel Gabriel. I was completely surprised that the Muslim Quran even mentions Adam and Eve, Jesus, Mary, and Gabriel. However, discussing these, and other common elements, provided “Kate” many opportunities to carefully, yet confidently explain other truths of the Bible.
I was attracted to this book for two reasons: First, I am curious about the teachings and tenants of Islam because of the increasing influence of the Muslim faith around the world and in our own United States; and second, as a believer I am compelled to “always be ready to … give an account for the hope this is in [me]”—I Peter 3:15b. In the Land of Blue Burqas teaches us about the lives and culture of Islamic people through the experiences of “Kate McCord” and through the very words and culture of the Afghan people.
All the people of the world are created by God with an eternal soul. That makes it critical for each believer to be involved in sharing the hope we have through the Honorable Jesus Messiah. Whether God is calling you to witness for Him here at home or in some other part of the world, reading In the Land of Blue Burqas will be challenging and inspiring.