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.
Though Corrie's family had little themselves, they sacrificed to give to the needy people around them. Corrie's mother was often unwell, but on the days she was strong enough, she brought food and comfort to the poor, or as Corrie described them "forgotten old men and pale young mothers." The children often accompanied their mother on these visits. One such occasion remained vivid in Corrie's memory even when she was an old lady. Here it is in her own words . . .
"The night before a baby had died, and with a basket of her own fresh bread, Mama was making the prescribed call on the family. Mama went at once to the young mother, but I stood frozen on the threshold. Just to the right of the door, so still in the homemade crib, was the baby.
It was strange that a society which hid the facts of sex from children made no effort to shield them from death. I stood staring at the tiny, unmoving form with my heart thudding strangely against my ribs. Nollie, always braver than I, stretched out her hand and touched the ivory white cheek. For a while curiosity and terror struggled in me. At last I put one finger on the small curled hand. It was cold.
Cold as we walked back to the Beje, cold as I washed for supper, cold even in the snug gas-lit dining room. Between me and each familiar face around the table crept those small icy fingers. Death had been only a word. Now I knew that it could really happen---if to the baby, then to Mama, to Father, to Betsie.
Still shivering with that cold, I followed Nollie up to our room and crept into bed beside her. At last we heard Father's footsteps winding up the stairs. It was the best moment in every day, when he came up to tuck us in. We never fell asleep until he had arranged the blankets in his special way and laid his hand for a moment on each head. Then we tried not to move even a toe.
But that night as he stepped through the door, I burst into tears. 'I need you!' I sobbed. 'You can't die! You can't!' . . . Follow this link to read the rest.
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