Who was Corrie Ten Boom? Find out with guest Evelyn Hinds on the show Christ in Prophecy.
Air Date: August 21, 2016
Dr. Reagan: Corrie Ten Boom was a simple Dutch woman who became one of the most influential Christians spokespersons of the second half of the 20th Century. Who was she? What was her message? And what propelled her to world renowned? Stay tuned for a fascinating interview with a remarkable Christian woman who portrays Corrie on the stage.
Dr. Reagan: Greetings in the name of Jesus, our Blessed Hope, and welcome to Christ in Prophecy. My special guest this week is Evelyn Hinds of Frisco, Texas who portrays Corrie Ten Boom on the stage. And here to help me with the interview is my daughter, Rachel Houck. Rachel is the Chief Operating Officer of our ministry, and in that capacity she wears many hats; one of which is serving as one of our three camera operators when we are shooting television programs. So, being on the set with me is a new experience for her and is one she did not seek. But I thought it would be appropriate to invite her to help me interview Evelyn. In fact I’m going to have Rachel start the interview with the very first question.
Rachel Houck: Evelyn we are delighted that you are here as our special guest today. And why don’t we start with by you telling us a little bit about Corrie Ten Boom. Who was she? And what was it about her that made her special?
Evelyn Hinds: Well she was actually a simple Dutch woman, but she was an extraordinary Christian. And she had an extraordinary love for the Jewish people. And during the Second World War they did hide Jewish people and they were sent to the concentration camp. But Corrie survived and she really spent the rest of her life traveling around telling her story. And the biggest thing was in 1975 Billy Graham’s organization made a movie of her life called, The Hiding Place. But she wrote books and had been speaking for years but the movie I think really made her somewhat of a celebrity.
Rachel Houck: Ok, so with that background on Corrie would you tell us a little bit about your background and how you eventually came to know about her? Let’s start at the beginning though.
Evelyn Hinds: Ok.
Rachel Houck: Can you tell us if you were born and raised in a Christian family?
Evelyn Hinds: Well, my mother was a Christian and she did take us to Sunday school. And when I got to be about 16 I thought I’d had enough of that. So, I in 1983 if you forward from my childhood until 1983 my life was a mess. I didn’t know what to do about it, no one else seemed to know either. And I did know a few things about God. I knew that Jesus loved me, and I knew that I was a sinner that wasn’t too hard. And the Bible was the Word of God.
Rachel Houck: Right.
Evelyn Hinds: So, I really had to come to a place where I waved that white flag at God and said, “You know I give up. I do not know how to live this life. If you can do anything with me, I’m yours.” And at the end of that prayer I really knew that I was going to go God’s way and not my way any longer. And in 1983 I was a young women with a lot of problems, but I began to have joy. And it was like Corrie talked about a hankie that was such a miracle for her. That joy really told me that there was a God in Heaven who heard me.
Rachel Houck: Right.
Evelyn Hinds: And He had a plan for me.
Dr. Reagan: But how did you come in contact with Corrie?
Evelyn Hinds: Well, that was–it wasn’t too long after I made that prayer. And I went to the church every time the door opened and one evening they were showing a movie, The Hiding Place. And I never heard of Corrie Ten Boom and I was there and I watched the movie. But at the end the real Corrie comes on, at the end and she had peace and joy in her face. And that told me that she knew something about living the Christian life that I needed to know. And I like to tell audiences, there is nothing more beautiful than peace and joy in an old face. Think about it. Peace and joy is beautiful on babies, on anybody, but especially on an old face.
Dr. Reagan: I want to read you a scripture here that reminds me of Corrie and you just comment on it, ok. It comes from 2 Chronicles 16:9, it says, “The eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth, that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”
Evelyn Hinds: And that was Corrie. That was absolutely Corrie. And that is such a good example because He took this spinster, simple, Dutch woman without money, without things and did extraordinary things with her life.
Dr. Reagan: What was it–how did she end us she and her family in a German Concentration Camp because they weren’t Jews.
Evelyn Hinds: No, but they were hiding the Jews in their home. And someone a quisling, a traitor, betrayed them and the Gestapo came and arrested everyone. They never found the people in the hiding place though.
Dr. Reagan: Oh, is that right I didn’t know that.
Evelyn Hinds: Yeah.
Dr. Reagan: Yeah. And so they were hiding Jews who were going to be taken to concentration camps and gassed. But you know the thing that gets me about that is that this was during a time when nearly all the churches of Europe were teaching what is called Replacement Theology. They were teaching that God has washed His hands of the Jews. He doesn’t love the Jews anymore. They are Christ killers. All the promises made to the Jews have been transferred to the Church. How in the world did they come out loving the Jewish people when the churches were teaching this sort of thing?
Evelyn Hinds: Well they had a long history of that. And it was in–Corrie tells a story in 1844 her grandfather had started a prayer group for the Jewish people. Which was very unusual in 1844.
Dr. Reagan: Very unusual.
Evelyn Hinds: And so, they had that history of loving the Jewish people. And her brother became like a pastor to the Jewish people. So, they were not your average Dutch people in that regard.
Dr. Reagan: I see. Well you have put all of this together in a marvelous book, I mean absolutely marvelous called, The Weaving: A Journey to Corrie Ten Boom’s Life. And Rachel you read that book recently why don’t you just share with us how it impacted you.
Rachel Houck: It really impacted me because I feel that you even though you have never meet Corrie personally that God put her message inside of you to carry on. So the message is very important for me to know, and for everyone to know. So, even as a Christian, I’ve been a Christian a long time I very much learned that the Jewish people are so important. You know just confirming to me again that, in my spirit that’s what I got through the book. So, and of course I got to learn about you too.
Evelyn Hinds: Yeah.
Rachel Houck: So, and it was very well written, thank you for giving me one.
Evelyn Hinds: Thanks.
Dr. Reagan: In fact the most surprising thing to me in the whole book was the fact that you were one time a licensed aviation mechanic.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes. That’s another story. That’s another story.
Dr. Reagan: I could hardly believe that. Well now you called the book The Weaving why in the world did you call it that?
Evelyn Hinds: Well Corrie had a poem that she liked to use to illustrate. And I read that she always had this purple cloth in her suitcase with an embroidery where the topside was beautiful, a crown, and the underside was a tangled mess.
Dr. Reagan: Mess.
Evelyn Hinds: And she said we are looking at our lives from the underside, but the topside is what God sees.
Dr. Reagan: God is fashioning, yes. This was one of her most famous illustrations. And what I would like to do right now is to pause at this point and show our viewers a clip from your stage production in which you present the weaving.
Evelyn Hinds: And this poem tells something of my life; maybe something of your life too. My life is like a weaving between my God and me. I do not choose the colors. He worketh steadily. Sometimes He weaveth sorrow. And I, in foolish pride forget He sees the upper, but I the underside. Not till the loom is silent and the shuttles cease to fly will God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why. The dark threads are as needful in the skillful Weaver’s hand, as those threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned. I have come with a message that God has no problems with our lives, only plans.
Dr. Reagan: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our interview with Evelyn Hinds who portrays Corrie Ten Boom on the stage. Well, Evelyn that was quite a clip we saw there about the weaving, I just love that story. How about showing us that up close?
Evelyn Hinds: Ok.
Dr. Reagan: Your prop. There you go. That’s the way we see ourselves.
Evelyn Hinds: That’s the way we see our lives, but she would say that’s the way God sees it.
Dr. Reagan: Wow that is so powerful. Rachel.
Rachel Houck: So, Evelyn how did you get started in or interested in portraying Corrie Ten Boom on stage? Were you already a professional actress when it happened, or?
Evelyn Hinds: Well, not in the Hollywood sense. But I did have a great love for acting ever since I was 17 years old and found I had a particular talent. But I started this in about ’97 and I found that I had a particular talent to portray old women.
Rachel Houck: There you go.
Evelyn Hinds: Well, who knew?
Rachel Houck: Right.
Evelyn Hinds: But, I thought, well we were doing a church ladies retreat and I thought, who shall I be? And I went I’ll be Corrie Ten Boom.
Rachel Houck: Sure.
Evelyn Hinds: I had just read another book–
Dr. Reagan: You were living in Oklahoma at that time?
Evelyn Hinds: Yes. And I had read the book where God had prepared her, it was her last book I believe that she wrote. How God had really prepared her from the time she was young to do what she did when she was old. Which answered a lot of questions for me. Like how do you get up in middle age and just start doing the things that she did? But I thought well I know the ladies will love this. It’s a great story, Corrie’s story is a great story. And but something happened I never even thought of, they thought I really was Corrie Ten Boom.
Dr. Reagan: Oh, so you arrived dressed?
Rachel Houck: Wow.
Evelyn Hinds: When I was in my costume they thought I was really Corrie Ten Boom and I even signed autographs. But we were in a church and I didn’t want to lie so I did put Evelyn Hinds as Corrie Ten Boom.
Rachel Houck: That’s good.
Evelyn Hinds: But then I prayed to God, “I love doing this but only if you want me to do it.”
Dr. Reagan: So you developed that into a solo stage performance that lasted for what an hour, or something like that?
Evelyn Hinds: About that, yeah.
Dr. Reagan: And you perform that everywhere. I mean not only in the United States but all over the world.
Evelyn Hinds: That’s right.
Dr. Reagan: I love the story in your book about the Indian man. Tell us about that.
Evelyn Hinds: Ok. Well I had this opportunity, this fabulous opportunity really miraculous circumstances to go to India and perform. And I was in my costume after I portrayed her in the Sunday service and I was shaking hands with the people coming out. And this one Indian man said, “I saw you years ago but I never thought I’d see you again. But I almost didn’t recognize you, you’ve lost weight.” And he was so earnest I couldn’t tell him. I went, “Um.” But anyway–
Dr. Reagan: I would say that is a great compliment for your acting.
Evelyn Hinds: It was a great compliment.
Dr. Reagan: Go ahead.
Rachel Houck: Well I have another question.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes.
Rachel Houck: What makes Corrie Ten Boom’s message so important?
Evelyn Hinds: Well, I think it goes back to their love for the Jewish people. The very first time I performed I gave–what Corrie said on a tape about her father. “Father’s friends told him, ‘Casper Ten Boom you will be put in prison for what you are doing.’ And father would always answer, ‘I’m too old for prison life. But for me it would be an honor to give my life for God’s chosen people.'” And when I delivered that line I began weeping.
Rachel Houck: Yeah, I feel that now. It’s powerful.
Evelyn Hinds: I didn’t expect that. But really I think that’s is at the heart of what makes her message so important today. Maybe more important today than ever.
Dr. Reagan: Yes, with the rising Anti-Semitism that’s sweeping Britain, and France and all of Europe.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes.
Dr. Reagan: Yes. And Jews are fleeing back home to their homeland as they have not done since the fall of Communism in Russia. Yes, it is a message that is very relevant right here and now. I know another aspect of her message, I would say probably the greatest message was the love of the Jewish people and how we as Christian should be aware of our Jewish heritage and how much we owe the Jewish people. And that certainly God has not washed His hands of them as Christ killers. But another aspect of her message was she had a great emphasis on forgiveness.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes.
Dr. Reagan: Tell us about that.
Evelyn Hinds: Well to begin with their family was betrayed. So she had the chore of forgiving the man that really sent–her father died after only 10 days, her brother came back and died a short time later. Her nephew Kik they never heard from him again. And her dear sister Betsie starved to death in the camp. So, she had to–this man wrote her a letter and said–was asking for forgiveness.
Dr. Reagan: The man that betrayed the whole family?
Evelyn Hinds: And she wrote to him and said, “I have forgiven you. You have caused the death of these members of my family. And you’ve caused me much personal suffering. But I have forgiven you because I am a Christian.” And he was in jail and sentenced to die. And she said, “I know you are to die soon. But you could ask God to forgive you. And ask Him to cleanse you from your sins. And when you die you could go to one of the many mansions that Jesus has gone to prepare.” So, she told that story of how she forgave that man and ultimately it led to his salvation.
Dr. Reagan: You know this is a faint memory of mine because I read a lot of the books about her but many of them I read many years ago. But it seems to me like she said at one point that she found it much easier to forgive the German guards who treated them so terribly then she did Christians who betrayed her because she expected the guards to do what they did, but didn’t expect the Christians to do what they did. Is that right?
Evelyn Hinds: Yes, and she would commit to forgiving and then it would pop up; she would wake up in the morning, you know 2 o’clock in the morning there it was and she kept praying to the Lord. And then a pastor explained to her, he said, “It’s like when a bell rings after you stop ringing it there is still a few dings and it dongs before it stops.”
Dr. Reagan: And they get farther and farther apart, until finally silence.
Evelyn Hinds: Yeah.
Dr. Reagan: Wow that is a tremendous illustration. Give us another illustration from her life something that comes to your mind that she some of her, one of her famous stories. She had so many, many stories that she told about the concentration camp and all. But maybe you can think of another one you could share with us.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes, she went into the concentration camp with her sister. And then Betsie was always, we are going to thank God for everything.
Dr. Reagan: Incidentally how old was she at that time? About 40?
Evelyn Hinds: She was in her 50’s, early 50’s.
Dr. Reagan: In her 50’s when she went to the concentration camp.
Evelyn Hinds: Early 50’s.
Dr. Reagan: Excuse me go ahead.
Evelyn Hinds: And she said to Betsie, “Betsie, I cannot thank God for the lice and fleas.” But Betsie did.
Dr. Reagan: Betsie must have had a child-like faith.
Evelyn Hinds: She did. And Corrie was told, “Those lice and fleas help us. For every day we would bring a Bible message in Barracks 28 and if the guards would come in we could be sent to the ovens. But those lice and fleas, those German officers don’t want to get lice and fleas on their uniforms. So for that blessing of the lice and the fleas we was able to bring that Bible message. And many women went to their death with Jesus name on their lips because of the blessing of the lice and fleas.”
Dr. Reagan: Oh, my.
Rachel Houck: Wow.
Dr. Reagan: I also have a vague memory of her getting ready to be deloused and it was something about she had a Bible and some vitamins under her armpit or whatever and prayed to be invisible. Tell us about that.
Evelyn Hinds: Well, actually going into the camp they were searched.
Dr. Reagan: Yes.
Evelyn Hinds: And she had a Bible in a pouch on her back. And she knew she could be killed. And so she prayed, “Oh, Lord, send you angels to protect your Word. But then I think angels are spirits and you can look through a spirit. Oh, God don’t let you angels be transparent today.” And she said that she went right past the guards and they didn’t even see her.
Dr. Reagan: Wow.
Rachel Houck: A miracle.
Dr. Reagan: Now that is the Lord operating in a very, very special way.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes.
Dr. Reagan: Now all of her family died. How did she get out of the concentration camp alive?
Evelyn Hinds: It was a clerical error. She would say, “A blunder of man, but a miracle of God.”
Dr. Reagan: Oh, I like that. I like that. I often teach that there is no such thing as coincidence; there is only God-incidences.
Evelyn Hinds: Right.
Dr. Reagan: And so it was a clerical error that enabled her to get out. And then once she got out how did she get started going all over the world talking about this and the spiritual implications of what she had experienced?
Evelyn Hinds: That was my question you know in the beginning. She wrote a book called, A Tramp for the Lord and she said, “I’m just going to go anywhere He sends me and tell my story to anyone who will listen.”
Dr. Reagan: So the book just took off?
Evelyn Hinds: She wrote her first book when she was still in Holland and she did some speaking just in neighborhoods in Holland. But as soon as she could get a passage on a freighter to New York, she came to New York.
Dr. Reagan: Wow. And that started her speaking tour?
Evelyn Hinds: Yes. Yes.
Dr. Reagan: Well Evelyn what a story. And you know I just love your book. We are going to tell people how to get a copy of it. And the book contains a DVD that four segments, an interview of you, and three segments from your stage portrayals.
Evelyn Hinds: Yes.
Dr. Reagan: So, it is a wonderful blessing to get this. Would you just look into the camera right in front of you here and tell them how people can get in touch with you if they are interested in having you come and portray Corrie.
Evelyn Hinds: You can look at my website it is: evelynhinds.com, H-I-N-D-S, and e-mail me or call the phone number.
Dr. Reagan: They can e-mail you through the website.
Evelyn Hinds: Yeah. Absolutely.
Dr. Reagan: Ok, that’s a good deal.
Dr. Reagan: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our interview of Evelyn Hinds who portrays Corrie Ten Boom on the stage.
Rachel Houck: Well I guess as you have notice Evelyn’s chair has suddenly gone empty. That’s because Evelyn is going to share with you a couple of Corrie Ten Boom’s marvelous stories in character. And now here is Evelyn Hinds portraying Corrie Ten Boom.
Evelyn Hind’s Presentation
Evelyn Hinds: I have come with a message for you today. I was remembering a time when I was in the concentration camp. And one day I was complaining to my sister Betsie. And I said, “Oh, Betsie, today I cannot stand it. I have caught a cold and I have no hankie.” And Betsie said, “We shall pray. Dear God, please send Corrie a hankie for she has caught a cold, amen” And I did what you did, I smiled. That she would pray for such an impossible thing. But in a few minutes I heard a knock it was on the window that was beside me and it was my friend a fellow prisoner. And I said, “Oh, have you come for a visit?” And she said, “No. No. I have something for you.” And she passed through that window a tiny package. And in that package was a hankie. I said, “Why did you bring this?” And she said, “I was in the prison hospital and I was making hankies out of an old sheet and something in my heart said take a hankie to Corrie Ten Boom. Do you know what a hankie can tell you at a time like that? That hankie told me that there was a God in Heaven who heard an impossible prayer of one of His suffering old servants and he put it in the heart of another one to meet that need. Now that’s the foolishness of God. But the foolishness of God is higher than man’s greatest wisdom.
I remember after the war I was speaking at a church. And there came a man to me and he said, “Do you know me?” And I saw him, he had a very familiar face. And I remember him. He was one of the cruelest guards at Ravensbrück. And those guards beat us. And they had beaten my Betsie until she became deaf in her ear, she was too weak to work. Oh, there was hatred in my heart. But that man say, “I have asked God to forgive me for what I have done. But I also asked Him if I could ask for forgiveness from one of my very victims. I read in the paper you would be here today. And I have come to say, “Fraulein Ten Boom, will you forgive me?” Oh, there was hatred in my heart, but I know Romans 5:5 that say, “Already we have some experience of the love of God shed abroad in our heart by the Holy Spirit.” And so I said, “God give me that love that I may forgive this man.” And exactly at that moment there came through my arm like electricity and I was able to take that man’s hand and say, “Brother I forgive you everything.” Now is that Corrie Ten Boom love? No. That is God’s love. He tells you to forgive your enemies, but He gives you the love He demands of you. Hallelujah.
Dr. Reagan: Well, I don’t know what else to say except thank you, thank you, thank you. You have been such a great blessing to us. And I hope that God will just continue to open up door after door for you. Folks, that’s our program for this week. Until next week the Lord willing this is Dave Reagan speaking for Lamb & Lion Ministries saying, “Look up, be watchful, for our redemption is drawing near.”
End of Program