The Safest Hiding Place
Terror attacks in Paris, Brussels and now again in London make us think about our safety wherever we go. What does God's Word say about it?
Corrie ten Boom’s The Hiding Place captivated me as a child. I was instantly whisked away to World War II when she and her family hid Jews in their Haarlem, Holland home to protect them from the gas chambers. Or equally dark fates. One of my favorite quotes from her book — something I’ve remembered to this day — took place between Corrie and her sister Betsie ten Boom, when Betsie explained the importance of the center of God’s will. It is relevant today as it ever was.
It happened one night while war planes stormed the skies above. After an hour of tossing and turning in bed, Corrie heard Betsie making tea and decided to join her. They had tea and talked until the sound of planes quieted, then Corrie made her way back to her room. She reached her hand to find her pillow and grasped something sharp. It cut her.
Corrie ran back downstairs with a 10-inch piece of shrapnel and her sister Betsie joined her in the kitchen. As Betsie bandaged Corrie’s hand, they stared at the jagged piece of metal. Corrie gasped, “Betsie, if I hadn’t heard you in the kitchen …” Betsie shushed her. “Don’t say it, Corrie!” she replied. “There are no ‘ifs’ in God’s world. And no places that are safer than other places. The center of His will is our only safety — Oh Corrie, let us pray that we may always know it!”
The Center of God’s Will
The safest place is the center of God’s will. I’ve always believed that, but terror attacks in Paris, Brussels and most recently in London make me think about my safety and that of those I love, wherever we go.
Is it true that there are “no places that are safer than other places”? What does God’s Word say about it?
Only God protects us and only He can keep us safe. “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for thou alone, O Lord, makest me dwell in safety” (Ps. 4:8). We also know that nothing we do will lengthen our lives as God ordained. “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” (Matt. 6:27). Psalm 91 is a wonderful chapter when we struggle with worry. When we put our trust in God, when we make Him our refuge, we are truly safe.
Does that mean that nothing bad will happen to us? Of course not. But the wonderful thing about being in the center of God’s will is that no matter what happens, He will comfort us and give us peace and strength to handle whatever comes. Even if we die, if we know the Lord, we will go to be with Him. Our lives are very short. Our time on earth is brief (James 4:14). If we trust Him like we say we do, we know that the endgame is eternal life. If we are in the center of His will that is assured.
God directs our steps, but we have to stay on the path. “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps” (Prov. 16:9). We can walk out of His will. If we do, when hard times come, we will not have the peace, joy and strength that he provides even in the middle of trouble (Ps. 9:9). “The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; he is their stronghold in time of trouble” (Ps. 37:39). He is our strength and guide. “Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you” (Ps. 73:23-25).
The center of God’s will is a place of peace, joy, hope and strength. When terror attacks, health problems or financial hardships come, we know that we have a God who never leaves or forsakes us, who is our stronghold in a time of trouble, who provides a place of safety for us and our family. When we lean on Him, even in our darkest times, He holds us and never lets us go.
I’d say that’s pretty safe.