I saw a recommendation on a blog I read for In My Father's House by Corrie Ten Boom. I loved The Hiding Place, and I'm pretty sure that I also read Tramp for the Lord. Anyway, this tells about Corrie's childhood and young adult years...the years before The Hiding Place. It was wonderful to see how the Ten Boom family nurtured their children's faith and taught them and prepared them for the things they would face in the future. Here are some of my favorite parts (with an * by my thoughts):
page 16: "So many times we wonder why God has certain things happen to us. We try to understand the circumstances of our lives, and we are left wondering. But God's foolishness is so much wiser than our wisdom. From generation to generation, from small beginnings and little lessons, He has a purpose for those who know and trust Him. God has no problems--just plans!"
*I can see ways the Lord has guided my life or why certain things have happened. I don't understand everything, but I know that "all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly." (D&C 90:24)
Page 28: "Some people say that children don't have spiritual understanding--that we should wait until a child can 'make up his mind for himself.' I believe a child should be led, not left to wander."
page 34-35 Safe?
Said a precious little laddie,
To his father one bright day,
"May I give myself ot Jesus?
Let Him wash my sins away?
O, my son, but you're so little,
Wait until you older grow,
Bigger folks, 'tis true, do need Him,
But little folk are safe, you know.
Said the father to his laddie,
As a storm was coming on,
"Are the sheep all safely sheltered,
Safe within the fold, my son?"
"All the big ones are, my father,
But the lambs, I let them go,
For I didn't think it mattered,
Little ones are safe, you know."
*I think most of us realize how foolish the idea to let children make up their own minds is. Children need to be taught and led. We, as adults, even need to be taught and led. Yes, of course, there comes a time when children need to choose which path to take, but they will be much more likely to choose the correct path if they have been taught, if their parents have set a good example, and if they have felt the spirit. There is an innate goodness in young children, but it will quickly become corrupted if they are not taught by precept and example.
page 90 Corrie describes her family members learning several languages. She began to learn English in fifth grade and wondered if she'd ever go to ENgland or America and actually use English. (Of course, years later she traveled around the world speaking of her experiences and had many opportunities to use English.) Her sister studied German. During family Bible study, each family member would hold a Bible in a different language. Father would have each person read the same verse, such as John 3:16, in a different language. She writes, "When I was so young, it didn't seem possible that Betsie would ever have a chance to use a Bible verse in German. We didn't know any Germans then! However, God uses such seemingly insignificant ways to prepare us for the plan He has for our lives. Over forty years later, in a concentration camp in Germany, Betsie was able to use that verse-and many more-to speak to the prisoners and the guards about God's love."
*We never know when our experiences, the things we have learned, the subjects we have studied will allow us to bless others' lives.
Corrie was an au paire for a young child. The home was large adn the family was very wealthy. The family seemed very concerned with making money and Corrie was surprised that not all homes were so filled with love and laughter and fun as her home had been. When her aunt, Tante Bep, died soon after Corrie began this job and Corrie had to return home, she had gained greater compassion for this aunt that often seemed cranky...she had spent many years working in others' homes. "Just a small taste of the life she had led gave me more understanding. We never know until we walk in someone else's shoes."
page 117: "It never ceases to amaze me the way the Lord creates a bong among believers that reaches across continents, beyond race and color. This spiritual bond is something man has tried to establish with big national or world councils and organized ecumenical movements but always misses when the Spirit of the Lord is not present."
page 200-201...learned that she can't pray for something that is wrong...
Page 206, Her sister Hans lived in Rotterdam when there was a terrible bombardment during WWII. They fled and lived in a small suburb of Rotterdam, where they lived in a cellar for a year. She repeated to her children over and over, "Opa taught us, 'When Jesus takes your hand, He keeps you tight. When Jesus keeps you tight, He leads you through your whole life. When Jesus leads you through your life, He brings you safely home."
*Such a beautiful book and a warm and loving family devoted to serving the Lord. I am trying to make my home a refuge from the world. A place of love and laughter and safety and peace.