Critical thinking essay
1. Explain how successful or unsuccessful Hiding Place is at addressing
Hiding place is a novel that addresses some of the challenges being faced by the community and why it becomes quite difficult to resolve such issues. There is the issue of survival and trust where the main characters in the novel are having quite a difficult time to balance. The two sisters are obliged to assist the Jews because of their religious inclination yet they find themselves doing all the wrong things. This is mainly because what they have to be involved in requires them to speak numerous lies. In the process of seeking survival means, they also find themselves being engaged into dirty business. In the process of accomplishing and achieving this, they fall into temptations yet continue with their acts of mercy and compassion. The community has fallen short of people that can be trusted both to protect as well as to speak the truth. It should have been expected that the community takes up the responsibility of protecting the innocent who were caught up in the war. This would have minimized on the need of the two sisters to risk their lives by hiding them and even engaging in wrong businesses.
The novel does not successfully address the obstacles and issues that are being faced by the communities in the novel. This is demonstrated by the fact that the very people who took up the risk of protecting the needy and the helpless succumb to various illnesses. They were basically compelled by their strong Christian backgrounds to help them yet nobody recognized their efforts (Hughes, 65). Even though it was an issue that affected the entire society, it was left to a single family who had to risk their lives, health and security just to extend a hand of help. Despite the fact that the sisters lived on strong biblical values, they compromised a lot on their beliefs by engaging in lies. Christian religious beliefs do not allow its followers to engage in sin and lies in the name of protecting. There are other alternatives of doing the right thing in a Christian perspective without having to compromise on biblical teachings.
Hiding place has also revealed another important feature of community growth, which is compassion. However, in showing such compassion, there are numerous challenges that the community will go through. One main obstacle is when such an act becomes a point of weakness upon those who extend it. For instance, we realize that some of the consequences that were suffered by the two sisters were simply because they decided to show compassion. There also those other individuals like the spy who pretended to be a victim of the war and needed help when his intention was to report the sisters. In my opinion, such challenges of compassion have been effectively been addressed in the novel and clearly expose the dangers that are likely to accrue to the individuals who decide to show compassion.
According to biblical and Christian teachings, believers are required to offer the necessary help to those who are around them. They are required to do this without showing any form of partiality. Even though there are spiritual rewards for engaging in such acts of mercy, the bible states the challenges that people will have to face in performing such services. Even though the novel tells of how the two sisters compromised in such actions, it is clear that they had to endure some form of suffering. They were taken advantage of, became ill, overworked and finally succumbed to their poor lifestyle. It is clear from the novel that the two sisters were overwhelmed by their responsibilities. This was because they decided to keep their services secret for the sake of the people they were serving and that the community did not come in handy to support them. The responsibilities were too much and risky for them and that is why they ultimately died.
Corrie ten Boom has displayed qualities that are required for a good leader. The most important qualities I have identified in him are being self sacrificial and daring. Corrie knew what was right for him to do that he decided to overlook the dangers he was exposing himself and his family to. He had purposed in his heart not just to talk the word but to practice it. When he saw the Jews whom he considered to be his brothers and sisters, he took it as an opportunity to preach to them as he accommodated them in the family house. He was so passionate about the responsibilities that he failed to realize that he could be hosting a spy that would ultimately lead him and his family into danger (Boom, 42). Even though Corrie was not the head of the family, he was able to influence and convince his family to support his efforts in ensuring that the captives were hosted and taken care of.
Traditional values differ from one community to the other. In most cases, people are encouraged to show kindness to their own and ignore strangers. The main reason of keeping strangers out of such business is because they could turn out to be real enemies. However, when it comes to Christian beliefs and values, it is required that kindness be shown to al without showing partiality (Hughes, 78). The fact that Corrie and his family accommodated strangers made them fall victims to one of the spies who ultimately reported them and led to their arrest. My understanding of traditional beliefs is the adherence to norms and rules that have been stipulated by the society. It is usually believed that those who are found into issues and problems are the defaulters who failed to comply.
Captain Jonson and Corrie ten Boom have both shown good qualities of governance. They both displayed courage and sacrifice as they carried out their responsibilities. Their levels of compassion also distinguish them from the rest and are admired by people around them. However, looking at the two, I find that the leadership qualities displayed by Corrie are more exceptional. He is a man who was not just compelled by circumstances to perform his duties. It was a passion in his heart to ensure that people were not only safe but also shared the love of Christ with them. I would therefore prefer Corrie’s to be a presidential candidate. He is one man who will not be overtaken by events but diligently perform his duties (Boom, 92). Despite the events that followed his acts of mercy, he did not retreat in his responsibilities. He chose to overcome the challenges that faced him and continued with his quest to preach the gospel of Christ.
My experience in writing this topic has widened my perspective towards biblical teachings. Reading through the characters displayed in the novels and how they gave themselves fully to their work is amazing. This is mainly because most people know much about the bible but are not good at practicing what they have learned. Captain Jonson and Corrie are a perfect example of people who did not just talk but went to the level of extending a hand of help. The issues and challenges that they went through did not hinder them from performing their responsibilities. This is a [perfect example of what Jesus not only preached but also encouraged his followers to live according to the biblical teachings. It is also clear that in the process of doing well, one should always be ready for the challenges that come with it. This should however not prevent them from doing what they are called and commissioned to do.
Boom, Corrie. The Hiding Place. New York: Chosen Books, 2006
Hughes, Richard. High Wind In Jamaica. London: Random House, 2011