In 1976 Corrie Ten Boom (WWII concentration camp survivor and author of The Hiding Place) spoke at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts. Elisabeth Elliot (wife of murdered missionary Jim Elliot) and their daughter Valerie attended the lecture*.
Later that week Corrie invited Elisabeth and her daughter to join her for tea at the house where Corrie was staying. They enthusiastically accepted. Over piping hot cups of tea Elisabeth asked Corrie more about her life in the concentration camps and about her book,The Hiding Place. She also asked Corrie a number of questions about God and suffering. At one point in their conversation Corrie walked over to her suitcase and pulled out a piece of satin, showing Elisabeth and Valerie the tangled web of threads on the underneath side of the cloth. Corrie then recited for them the poem The Weaver by Grant Colfax Tullar:
My life is but a weaving betwixt my Lord and me,
I do not choose the colors – He worketh steadily
Ofttimes He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, and I the underside.
Not till the loom is silent, and the shuttles cease to fly
Shall God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful in the Weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern he has planned.
After she finished Corrie turned the cloth over revealing the beautiful and intricate pattern on the other side.
Moms, parenting can be challenging. It can be difficult. It can be devastating.
Do not lose heart.
God said, “Never will I leave you. Never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5.
He is the El Shaddai, “the God who is Enough.” And He weaves your life into a beautiful pattern.
(*Story of Corrie Ten Boom and Elisabeth Elliot taken from The Elisabeth Elliot Newsletter, March/April 1998.)