Many people know the account of Corrie Ten Boom’s experience in the concentration camps during World War II. In the same biographical telling of her nightmarish story, she gives insight to the Christian character of her younger sister, Elisabeth, known as Betsie. Betsie Ten Boom coped with the brutal effects of that time of her life by keeping a heavenly perspective of the events around her. Her relationship with her Savior was so strong that she consistently applied biblical principles to living her life. When she saw a female guard mercilessly attack a fellow prisoner, Betsie felt sad for the guard because she understood the profound effects that act of sin could have on the guard’s eternal destination.
When the sisters were moved to a different concentration camp, they were welcomed by endlessly hungry varmints - fleas! The fleas were centered in the rather large room that they would work in for a great portion of the day. Corrie questioned her sister, who was also her spiritual mentor, by asking if they had to be thankful for fleas. Without hesitation Betsie replied that, yes, indeed they will be thankful, because Betsie noticed right away that the guards refused to go into the flea infested room, thereby leaving the women alone to do their work. From heaven’s perspective, Betsie saw that the fleas created an open harvest field for the gospel to be taught and received. In an otherwise cruel and hellish place, it was a place where God was found.
What is it in your life that looks distasteful and unpleasing to you? Is there a possibility that God is using it as a harvest field for more souls to be born? The Apostle Paul set the example for us as he ministered to people even as he spent time in prison. Historical accounts depict that his captors had to change out the guards often because he was converting them to Christianity so quickly. When we thank Him for all things, we may more readily see our trials as opportunities for us to minister to others in His name.
Philippians 1:12-14; 4:4-7