"Childhood memories rushed back at me out of the night, strangely close and urgent. Today I know that such memories are the key not to the past, but to the future. I know that the experiences of our lives, when we let God use them, become the mysterious and perfect preparation for the work He will give us to do."
From The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom with John and Elizabeth Sherrill.
This book came out in 1971. I saw the movie with my youth group many years ago in the old Columbia Theater. I have thought of it for years, always thinking it is a movie the girls need to see. I never ran across it on shelves of video stores.
Last week at my brother-in-law's former church, we ate lunch of wedding food. They have a small corner of donated books with a basket for donation. I spied The Hiding Place. I need to read that I thought, kind of like, I need to read any classic- War and Peace, Tale of Two Cities or any Shakespeare.
But I am finding, like reading To Kill a Mockingbird, I am bond up in the story. She leaves nuggets of gold among her memories. As always when I read stories of Nazi occupation, I wonder what would I do?
So is this why I write of my childhood? I keep my family alive. I am an orphan, but sometimes my dad, mom, grandma ring through my mind as they live with me. My dad's quiet values guide me so often. I do wish I were more like him. He loved and influenced so many people. My mother, too, loved in her own way. I lean on her last four years of contentedness. I think of Grandma's jolly public presence. She found joy in so much, when her life did not often have the sources of joy. Those stories will help me with a future work?
As Corrie and her father and Betsie, her old maid sister lived simply, so in a way did I. They didn't go out to change the world. They honored God in all they did and when the time came, they were given the strength to do extraordinary feats. But Corrie is so honest. She never lied intentionally. She knew it was wrong. But one day to get ration tickets, she lied. The ease of telling a lie struck her more than that she did. She felt little remorse, and she did wonder about that.
The intrigue Corrie encountered during the occupation reminds me some of the Left Behind series. The underground, the fear of being discovered, and trusting God for all things mingled in real life for this Dutch family. Often times, I am reminded of Revelation when I hear of Hitler and his occupation.
I am only half way through the book, but so far these are some of the quotes that struck me:
"There are no 'if's' in God's world. And no places that are safer than other places. The center of His will is our only safety-O Corrie, let us pray that we may always know it!" Betsie
"Those poor people," Father echoed. But to my surprise I saw that he was looking at the soldiers now forming into ranks to march away, "I pity the poor Germans, Corrie. They have touched the apple of God's eye."
One Jewish man, who had been a Christian for forty years, not afraid of dying. He called himself "A completed Jew!" he told us smilingly. "A follower of the one perfect Jew."
History, any history is key to the future. Ephesians 2:10- For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so that we can do the good things H planned for us long ago.