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Dietrich Bonhoeffer: In the Midst of Wickedness by Janet Benge (Book Thoughts)

Dietrich Bonhoeffer: In the Midst of Wickedness (Christian Heroes: Then and Now)Dietrich Bonhoeffer: In the Midst of Wickedness by Janet Benge

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. An inspiring story of a man who stood up for what was right when many around him chose to remain silent.

It gave me a human picture of Bonhoeffer that I hadn’t seen before, having before this only read part of Bonhoeffer’s book Nachfolge (“The Cost of Discipleship”).

It encouraged me to discover that there were many points in Bonhoeffer’s life when he didn’t know which way to turn. A particularly moving chapter in his life was his decision to return to his homeland of Germany right as the second world war and all of its horrors were unfolding, after having just arrived in New York City to a comfortable lecturing position at a prestigious seminary.

This book also puts to rest any speculation as to Bonhoeffer’s sexuality, providing a moving description of his courtship and subsequent engagement with Maria von Wedemeyer.

A life lived in service of the truth.

I was recently brought to tears watching the Mothers’ Day episode of Songs of Praise, as a British lady of Caribbean heritage spoke of her mother, a pentecostal minister who devoted her life to the poor and needy. She told us that her mother had a saying which she would often repeat: “At the end of my life, the only thing that will matter is what I did for Christ.”

When I look at Bonhoeffer’s life, I see an example of another person who came to know Jesus Christ, and was filled by the love that Christ brings, and devoted his life to serve his saviour.

May we see a revival of this Christian spirit in our nation and in the hearts of young people in particular.

God bless.

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