This too (or CTB lesson #4)

Renee Ann Smith —  August 8, 2011 — 10 Comments

Betsie, Willem, Nollie, Corrie

From the time she was a little girl, Corrie ten Boom’s godly parents and loving, happy family influenced the woman she would become. The lessons she learned from them have touched my heart and helped me grow, and I’d like to share them with you.

Corrie at the hiding place

Not familiar with Corrie’s story? Born in Holland in 1892, she was 48 when the Nazi’s invaded in 1940. Corrie, her older sister, and elderly father risked their lives to take in Jewish refugees and hide them in a tiny room at the top of their house. In the following excerpt from The Hiding Place, by John Sherrill, Corrie shares how God prepared her for what was to come, from the very first day of the war.

In Corrie’s words . . . How long we clung together, listening, I do not know. The bombing seemed mostly to be coming from the direction of the airport. The glowing sky lit the room with a strange brilliance. The chairs, the mahogany bookcase, the old upright piano, all pulsed with an eerie light . . . It was war.

Betsie and I knelt down by the piano bench. For what seemed hours we prayed for our country, for the dead and injured tonight, for the Queen. And then, incredibly, Betsie began to pray for the Germans, up there in the planes, caught in the fist of the giant evil loose in Germany. I looked at my sister kneeling beside me in the light of burning Holland.

“Oh Lord,” I whispered, “listen to Betsie, not me, because I cannot pray for those men at all.” . . . And it was then that I had the dream. It couldn’t have been a real dream because I was not asleep. But a scene was suddenly and unreasonably in my mind. I saw the Grote Markt, half a block away, as clearly as though I were standing there, saw the town hall and St. Bavo’s and the fish mart with its stair-stepped facade.

The Grote Markt circa 1940

Then as I watched, a kind of odd, old farm wagon-old fashioned and out of place in the middle of a city-came lumbering across the square pulled by four enormous black horses. To my surprise I saw that I myself was sitting in the wagon. And Father too! And Betsie! There were many others, some strangers, some friends.

All together we were slowly being drawn across the square behind those horses. We couldn’t get off the wagon, that was the terrible thing. It was taking us away—far away, I felt—but we didn’t want to go . . .

“Betsie!” I cried, jumping up, pressing my hands to my eyes. “Betsie, I’ve had such an awful dream!” I felt her arm around my shoulder.

“We’ll go down to the kitchen where the light won’t show, and we’ll make a pot of coffee.” The booming of the bombs was less frequent and farther away as Betsie put on the water. Closer by was the wail of fire alarms and the beep of the hose trucks.

Over coffee, standing at the stove, I told Betsie what I had seen. “Am I imagining things because I’m frightened? But it wasn’t like that! It was real. Oh Betsie, was it a kind of vision?”

“I don’t know,” she said softly. “But if God has shown us bad times ahead, it’s enough for me that He knows about them. That’s why He sometimes shows us things, you know—to tell us that this too is in His hands.”

The Ten Boom House

Read my previous posts about Corrie or purchase a copy of her book for yourself:

Renee Ann Smith

Posts Twitter Facebook

I teach literature in a Christian high school by day and write inspirational fiction by night. I love to share heart-touching quotes and stories here on my blog. So glad you stopped by!

10 responses to This too (or CTB lesson #4)

  1. Wow renn.
    This is really good.
    Thank you.

  2. I really liked reading that book. It was sad, but so uplifting. The faith of those two sisters was incrediable. Many lessons can be learned from reading this book. I think I might read it again.
    Keep on enjoying those moments!

  3. Thank you for linking this up to the NOBH! Peace to your day!

  4. Corrie has taught me so much over the years. Wonderful to see her here and have a reminder of those lessons. I look forward to seeing her in eternity!

    • Love, love, love the beautiful devotional and pic you shared today, Laura! That CS Lewis quote . . . wow!

      I’ve been reading your posts, even when I haven’t taken time to comment. And I look forward to sharing your lovely book on my blog a little later in August. I’ve been trying to get ready for the ACFW Conference and school and not panic! I really enjoyed your post on what you’ve learned from your writing journey. Very encouraging 🙂

  5. I too love the story of Corrie TenBoom. Years ago, I read a chapter to my ill daughter each night at bedtime. Thank you for sharing your inspiring post with us here at “Tell Me a Story.”

Trackbacks and Pingbacks:

  1. Facing the Future with Jonah | Doorkeeper - November 2, 2015

    […] Follow this link to read more about Corrie and Betsie Ten Boom. […]

Leave a Reply

Text formatting is available via select HTML. <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>