Real-time obedience

This is a real-time essay. The Lord is calling me to obey him in something today, and I would like to write to you about it as I process it. The matter concerns an angry email I received this morning and my working through how to reply. My first reaction was self-defense. I felt I had grounds. I felt I had been misunderstood. I felt I could justify what I was being accused of.

Still, I have decided to wait a while before replying. In the meantime I have read the Bible, taken a long walk, had breakfast, replied to other emails, and watched a 1974 interview of Corrie Ten Boom.

This was enough time for the Holy Spirit who lives inside me to suggest I trash my scripted reply to the angry letter. It is possible to be right in an argument (and yet I may not be as right as I think I am) but to be called to a higher response than rightness. If I respond to my friend with my justifications, he may agree with me or he may not. But will that produce the best result? Paul says, “The aim of our charge is love” (1 Timothy 1:5). What response could I give to the man that would be most aligned with that aim?

Over the past few hours I have come around to seeing that my words to my friend (the words that prompted his terse email) were not the best; they fell short of Christ’s call to “be perfect.” There are a dozen things I could have said that would have been better—that would have been peaceable, gentle, fruitful (James 3:17). And when we know what is the best thing to do and yet we settle for something less, we sin (James 4:17).

I have found throughout my life that when apologizing and asking forgiveness, it is best to do it cleanly. Tacking on a rider, even a mild and subtle one, ruins a worthy apology. When I speak to my friend next, I will simply tell him that I should not have spoken to him that way—and then may the Lord put a clamp on my mouth. Let me make this a public commitment before you all.

I know that afterward I will feel strengthened in my spirit if I do things God’s way and not in the way of fleshly desire. One always does. The choice of sin always carries its own punishment in the body (Romans 1:27), and the choice o    f obedience its own reward (2 Corinthians 3:18).

Courtesy of Andree Seu of Worldmag

Ten Boom | Ten Boom Museum

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The Hiding Place in Glenn Beck’s Program, Nov 11th

We have a wonderful opportunity to share the story of Corrie ten Boom with the world. Dr. Michael D. Evans will be New York City next week for an on-air interview with Glenn Beck on Tuesday. He is planning to air “The Hiding Place” on his program on next Friday the 11th. Pray that the message of love and sacrifice to save Jewish people that is found in this movie will spread around the world and touch many hearts. We will be promoting the Ten Boom Museum and the virtual tour as well.

Dr. Michael Evans and Glenn Beck shares the same admiration for Corrie Ten Boom’s heroism.

Don’t forget to join the Corrie Ten Boom Museum in Facebook!

In My Father’s House by Corrie Ten Boom

In My Father's House by Corrie Ten Boom Corrie ten Boom was fifty years old when she began harboring Jews during World War II. She was imprisoned in a concentration camp, and after her release she traveled the world, proclaiming the gospel. What happened in those earlier fifty years to prepare Corrie for all that lay ahead?

In My Father’s House (over 250,000 copies sold) explains how God used life’s small beginnings and everyday happenings to prepare Corrie for the suffering and victories to come. The eighth book of the Corrie ten Boom Library, it is the first in the series to focus on the years leading up to World War II and the events of The Hiding Place. More than merely a collection of memories from Corrie’s colorful life, this book explores the human side of one of the most authentic Christian witnesses and the faith that kept her going strong.

Holland’s First Female Watchmaker

Ten Boom was born on April 15, 1892, in Haarlem, in the Netherlands. Before her first birthday, her grandfather died and left his home and watchmaking business, founded in 1837, to her father. The family, which included older sisters Betsie and Nollie, and a brother, Willem, moved into the the ten Boom hiding Place on Barteljorisstraat 19, and her father took over the storefront business below. The family lived in a quirky warren of rooms above the shop over three separate floors, and Corrie Ten Boom, she and her sister Betsie shared a room at the back of the house on a high third floor. During their youth, the household also included three aunts, who helped care for the four ten Boom children.

Like Betsie, ten Boom never married, and eventually joined her father’s watch sales and repair business. She also became the first licensed woman watchmaker in the Netherlands. The family members were devout Christians, active members of the Dutch Reformed church, and ten Boom followed in the footsteps of one of her aunts and participated in several charitable aid projects in Haarlem. The ten Boom home and business served as a hub of activity in their neighborhood, and they regularly provided a meal to beggars and took in foster children. All the local children were especially fond of ten Boom’s pious but genial father, Casper, nicknamed “Opa,” or grandfather.

About Corrie ten Boom

Author of "The Hiding Place"Corrie ten Boom was born on April 15, 1892 in Haarlem, in the Netherlands. She was born to the ten Boom family who were members of the Dutch Reformed Church, which protested Nazi persecution of Jews as in injustice to fellow human beings and an affront to divine authority. In her autobiography, ten Boom repeatedly cited religious motivations for hiding Jews, particularly her family’s strong belief in a basic tenet of their religion: the equality of all human beings before God. Their religious activities had also brought the family a history of personal connections to the Jewish community. Corrie’s grandfather had supported efforts to improve Christian-Jewish relations in the nineteenth century. Her brother Willem, a Dutch Reformed minister assigned to convert Jews, studied antisemitism and ran a nursing home for elderly of all faiths. In the late 1930s that nursing home became a refuge for Jews fleeing from Germany.

After World War II began, members of the ten Boom family became involved in resistance efforts. Two nephews worked in resistance cells. Various family members sheltered young men sought by the Nazis for forced labor and assisted Jews in contacting persons willing to hide them. Corrie became directly involved in these efforts when, along with her father and sister Betsie, she decided to hide Jews in the family home in Haarlem, the Netherlands. Using her job as a watchmaker in her father’s shop as a cover, Corrie built contacts with resistance workers, who assisted her in procuring ration books and building a hiding place in the family home.

Six people, among them both Jews and resistance workers, hid in this hiding place when the Gestapo raided the house on February 28, 1944. Those in hiding remained undiscovered. Several days after the raid resistance workers transferred them to other locations. In the meantime, however, the Gestapo had arrested Corrie ten Boom, her father, her brother and two sisters, and other family members. In addition, the Gestapo arrested several resistance workers who had unwittingly entered the house during the raid, as well as many family acquaintances who had been attending a prayer meeting in the living room. Altogether, the Gestapo arrested some 30 people in the ten Boom family home that day.

After holding them briefly in the penitentiary in Scheveningen, a seaside town close to The Hague, the Gestapo released all but three of the ten Boom family members. Corrie ten Boom, her older sister Betsie, and her father Casper remained in prison. Casper ten Boom became sick in prison and died in a hospital corridor only ten days after the arrest. The sisters remained in the Scheveningen prison until June 1944, when officials transferred them to an internment camp at Vught, in the Netherlands. In September 1944, the Nazis deported Corrie and Betsie ten Boom to the Ravensbrueck concentration camp in Germany. In Ravensbrueck, the sisters managed to stay together until Betsie died that December.

The camp administration released Corrie ten Boom in late December 1944. Along with other released prisoners, she traveled by train to Berlin, where she arrived on January 1, 1945. From Berlin, ten Boom journeyed across Germany by train until she reached the Netherlands, where she reunited with surviving members of her family.

After the war, ten Boom advocated reconciliation as a means for overcoming the psychological scars left by the Nazi occupation. She later traveled the world as an evangelist, motivational speaker, and social critic, referring to her experiences in Ravensbrueck as she offered solace to prisoners and protested the Vietnam War.

For her efforts to hide Jews from arrest and deportation during the German occupation of the Netherlands, Corrie ten Boom (1892-1983) received recognition from the Yad Vashem Remembrance Authority as one of the “Righteous Among the Nations” on December 12, 1967. In resisting Nazi persecution, ten Boom acted in concert with her religious beliefs, her family experience, and the Dutch resistance. Her defiance led to imprisonment, internment in a concentration camp, and loss of family members who died from maltreatment while in German custody.

Corrie died on April 15, 1983 in Orange, California, on her ninety-first birthday.