Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Myth of Safety

Throughout his book, Don‘t Waste Your Life, Piper firmly but graciously explodes excuses, modern philosophies, and safety: “One of my aims is to explode the myth of safety and to somehow deliver you from the enchantment of security. Because it’s a mirage. It doesn’t exist. Every direction you turn there are unknowns and things beyond your control (81).” This stood out to me as yet another example of what I had learned from Corrie Ten Boom and Dietrich Bonhoeffer:

“The Germans had repaired the bomb damage to the airport and were using it now as a base for air raids against England. Night after night we lay in bed listening to the growl of engines heading west. Occasionally English planes retaliated and then the German fighters might intercept them right over Haarlem.

One night I tossed for an hour while dogfights raged overhead, streaking my patch of sky with fire. At last I heard Betsie stirring in the kitchen and ran down to join her.

She was making tea. She brought it into the dining room where we had covered the windows with heavy black paper and set out the best cups. Somewhere in the night there was an explosion; the dishes in the cupboard rattled. For an hour we sipped our tea and talked, until the sound of planes died away and the sky was silent. I said goodnight to Betsie at the door to Tante Jans’s rooms and groped my way up the dark stairs to my own. The fiery light was gone from the sky. I felt for my bed: there was the pillow. Then in the darkness my hand closed over something hard. Sharp too! I felt blood trickle along a finger.

It was a jagged piece of metal, ten inches long.


I raced down the stairs with the shrapnel shard in my hand. We went back to the dining room and stared at it in the light while Betsie bandaged my hand. ‘On your pillow,’ she kept saying.

‘Betsie, if I hadn’t heard you in the kitchen----’

But Betsie put a finger on my mouth. ‘Don’t say it, Corrie! There are no ‘if’s’ in God’s world. And no places that are safer than other places. The center of His will is our only safety-O Corrie, let us pray that we may always know it! (Emphasis added)’

-The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom, Chapter 5, p.66-67

“Man-made efforts of peace bring about a temporary feeling of safety and security. But, not real peace. That’s because we often confuse peace with safety. But they are not the same. Peace is a great venture. It’s a dare to trust God completely. Peace requires us to give up our illusions of safety, security, our schemes and plans in order to rely upon Almighty God alone. (Emphasis added)
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer

No comments: