He Sobbed

For those of you who don't know, I teach a class at Renewal Ranch each Wednesday--it is a home for men suffering from drug/alcohol addictions.  This is what happened today.


The film had ended and class was over.

He came sobbing to where I stood.

It was the movie The Hiding Place, the story of Corrie Ten Boom's mid-life adventure in the Dutch underground helping save the lives of some 800 Jewish people and her subsequent time spent in a concentration camp.

The story of loss, suffering, despair, questions, hatred.

When Corrie's heart was filled with hatred for the guards in the camp who had beaten her sister as she had watched, she did not know how to deal with the emotion.

Having lived in a loving home for 50+ years, Corrie had never experienced these kinds of emotions.

She was miserable and hated herself for the emotions she could not control.

Her misery seemed destined to drive her mad until at last, she asked God to take the hatred and to fill her with his love.

Then and only then did she experience peace and was able to minister to those around her.

Betsie told Corrie that after the war was over they had to go and tell people--all people--that there was no pit so deep that God wasn't deeper still.

She said the people would believe them because they had been there--the deep pits of concentration camps where millions perished.

Through sobs he said:

"Many of us here have lived lives filled with hatred and never thought much about it--it was a way of life.  Now we can be like Corrie and recoil at the thought of hating someone."  

The message I wanted them to go away with was this:

"Don't waste your sorrows.  You have been to the pit many times with your addictions.  The people outside of this facility who are hurting in all kinds of addictions will listen to you because you have been there."

"You know the power of God to change people--go and tell them!"

And they do, Praise God!

Every Sunday they worship with a different congregation telling all of the wonders God has performed in their lives.

They will be coming to share at my church this coming Sunday.
Praise God from Whom ALL blessings flow!

© all photographs and text property of Dianne Hogue unless otherwise noted