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Thursday, 18 October 2012

"Friendly Fire" Close to Home

One of my uncles in the Netherlands has asked me to work on translating his testimony from Dutch to English.  In it he refers to a pivotal event in his childhood.  He was not quite five years when on March 18, 1943 the house he was living in was destroyed by a bomb dropped by the Allies who had been aiming for a German military target.
   This incident, which occurred about one year before my mother’s birth, has been part of a story of providence carried by the family since World War II.  Every one of the family members was guarded from the catastrophe. 
   Both of my grandparents were at home at the time, since my grandfather was dealing with an illness.  Shortly after my grandmother had taken their eight month-old daughter out of her crib to sit her with “Papa” on the couch, the bomb fell on the house and pieces of debris landed in her crib.  The family, including my uncle, fled the house without injury. 
   One older brother had been sent to the store with a ration coupon for cookies, but he heard a plane overhead and was afraid to go inside.  That store was leveled and all inside perished. 
   Two other children were at school, which was untouched.  Arriving home at the end of the day, they found the ruined remains of their house and were sure they had become orphans.  Bystanders were able to tell them where the family had fled and they were again reunited.
   Why were some spared and not others?  This is a question that cannot be answered except that God does not play favourites.  His purposes for the individuals who were spared was not finished yet.

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