This is the last post in our series of discussions on Corrie ten Boom’s “The Hiding Place.” And in the 5+ years we’ve been doing this, this is the saddest I’ve been to see a book discussion end. There were a lot of emotions while I was reading this book, but this, this chapter – not even written by Corrie, but instead, an epilogue by Corrie’s friend and fellow author, Elizabeth Sherrill, was the one that made me cry. Elizabeth wrote about Corrie, “going home.” That phrase has become a beloved part of my personal vocabulary since June, when I walked Rick home. I smile thinking about both Corrie and Rick there, and it makes me look forward to a day (a long time from now), when I’ll get to go there, too.
But this chapter also shared one of my favorite analogies. In the words of Elizabeth Sherrill:
I remember the time thirteen-year-old Liz and I were helping Corrie unpack. From the bottom of the suitcase, Liz lifted a folded cloth with some very amateur-looking needlework on it – uneven stitches, mismatched colors, loose threads, snarls.
“What are you making?” Liz asked, bewildered.
“Oh, that’s not mine,” Corrie said. “That’s the work of the greatest weaver of all.”
Liz looked dubiously at the tangled mess.
“But Liz,” Corrie told her, “you’re looking at the wrong side!” She took the sorry thing from Liz’s hand. “This is what our lives look like, from our limited viewpoint.”
Then, with a flourish, Corrie shook open the cloth and turned it around to display a magnificent crown embroidered in red, purple, and gold. “But when we turn over the threads of our lives to God, this is what He sees!” (ebook location 4436)
A few months before Rick went home, I flew out to visit him and his wife. The first night I was there, Rick, though tired, had enough energy to pick up a guitar and strum around on it a bit. He sat and delicately tuned the strings and then, having heard me tell the story of my Mom, tuning her guitar and seguing into an old song, Rick segued into this song, which we sang together. In June, I sat by his bed in hospice and sang it again – so many times I lost count. And that song is so appropriate here:
Farther along we’ll know all about it.
Farther along we’ll understand why.
Cheer up my brother,
Live in the sunshine.
We’ll understand it all by and by.
This post is part of a weekly discussion on Corrie ten Boom’s classic, “The Hiding Place.” You do not have to read the book to weigh in on whatever topic is being discussed. However, if you have written a response to this week’s chapter, go visit Jason, my co-facilitator, at Connecting to Impact, to link it up at the widget and to see what he has to say.
For those of you who aren’t reading along with us, let me tell you a story… It was at a church service in Munich that I saw him, the former SS man who had stood guard at the shower room door in the processing center at Ravensbruck. He was the first of our actual jailers that I had seen since that … [Read More...]
Life was so much easier when it was in black and white. Think about it. The good guys wore white hats. The bad guys wore black ones. Life, behavior, and even people were easily categorized – good or bad. Roy Rogers wore a white hat, thus he was good. For many years, my world was black and white. … [Read More...]
It’s amazing what love can do. It can heal. It can give hope. It can restore one’s worth. It can save lives. Think of the woman in John 8. She had been caught in bed with a man who wasn’t her husband. According to the law, the religious leaders were within their rights to stone her to death. But … [Read More...]
Have you ever felt completely alone? Like nobody has ever been through exactly what you’re going through. There’s no way they can understand you. And nobody wants to be around you, Debbie Downer. Just keep to yourself, Negative Nelly. You suck the joy out of a party. I’ve been there. In fact, I … [Read More...]
For several years, I had the opportunity to travel on medical mission teams with Mercy International. As a non-medical person, I wasn’t sure exactly how helpful I could be, but I found two roles where I was a productive member of the team. One of these roles was as a pharmacy tech. The other was … [Read More...]
At what point does depression turn to a desperation strong enough to consider suicide? I’ve considered it a number of times over the last 25 years. But the times that I got closest were times that a little voice whispered to me – over and over again: “It never gets better.” It would be pretty … [Read More...]
My Granddaddy was a character. And one of my earliest memories was him “playing” his favorite game with us. It was a game that he had created just for his six beloved grandchildren—a game called “Mousie.” The winner of this game was the grandchild who could be still and quiet (like a mouse) the … [Read More...]
I’m short. For the most part, I don’t mind being short. But when I was growing up in a neighborhood full of bigger, older, meaner boys, being short was a real challenge. Especially when one of the boys’ favorite games involved out me at arm’s length and torturing me. I would swing my arms wildly, … [Read More...]