Thank God for Fleas

Posted on May 29, 2023 by Elizabeth Welte in Freedom Fighters

I am not sure if you have ever had fleas – but they are nasty to get rid of and it’s not a pleasant experience. Years ago, we visited a friend who had a number of cats. Jan and I were privileged to sleep on a bed, but our kids were lying in the floor. Within an hour, they were all bit up and itching like crazy.

While we were relieved to be in the bed, it was moments later that we realized there were hundreds of fleas in the bed. Needless to say, we found a way to leave early. It was awful.


Here is a powerful story about some special servants who were thankful for the fleas. Pastor Adam Ramsey in his book, Truth on Fire shares this story:

“Corrie ten Boom –

In her book The Hiding Place, Corrie tells of how her family sheltered hundreds of Jews during the Second World War from the murderous pursuits of the Nazis. Eventually their home was raided, and the ten Boom family were marched away into Hitler’s infamous concentration camps. Corrie and her sister Betsie eventually found themselves in the Ravensbrück concentration camp over the German border.

 By that time, the barracks that were built for 250 women were housing 1,500-2,000, with five to a bed and many more on the straw-matted floor. Corrie and Betsie were marched to Barracks 28, a dilapidated structure with broken windows, soiled bedding, backed-up plumbing, and bad-tempered guards. And to top it off, Barracks 28 was infested with biting fleas. Really God?

 As if things weren’t bad enough already? Over the coming weeks, the sisters began ministering in the miserable conditions of Barracks 28 to the other women around them; praying with them, encouraging one another, and reading from a small Bible they had smuggled in. Though the guards were all within earshot, they rarely entered the barracks, which created more opportunities for the sisters to speak of Jesus to the others.They soon discovered why. Corrie writes: ‘One evening I got back to the barracks lateBetsie was waiting for me, as always, so that we could wait through the food line together. Her eyes were twinkling. “You’re looking extraordinarily pleased with yourself,” I told her. “You know, we’ve never understood why we had so much freedom in the big room,” she said. “Well—I’ve found out.” That afternoon, she said, there’d been confusion in her knitting group about sock sizes and they’d asked the supervisor to come and settle it. But she wouldn’t. She wouldn’t step through the door and neither would the guards. And you know why? Betsie could not keep the triumph from her voice: “Because of the fleas! That’s what she said, ‘That place is crawling with fleas!’”[7]

Why did these two sisters have the freedom to provide hope and help in the darkest of circumstances? Because in the sovereign hands of God, the fleas controlled the Nazis.[8] If God is sovereign, we can finally rest from pretending that we are. And if we believe that Christ is on the throne, we too can live with assurance, even in the most difficult of circumstances.

 Ramsey, Adam. Truth On Fire: Gazing at God Until Your Heart Sings (pp. 27-29). The Good Book Company. Kindle Edition.


Are you going through a difficult time in your life? Remember today that God is in control of all things and Paul reminds is in Romans 8:28, “So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together for good, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfill his designed purpose.” (The Passion Translation).

Are you thankful for the fleas?


Anchored to the Rock of Ages,

Bill Welte, President/CEO
America’s Keswick

Bill would love to hear from you. Email him at


Written by Bill Welte: President/CEO of America’s Keswick: Bill has been married to his childhood sweetheart for 40+ years and has four married kids and 12 amazing grandkids. He loves music and is an avid reader.

Think About This: “The biblical purpose of every conversation you have, in ever personal interaction, is that the person who hears you will receive grace.” – C.J. Mahaney

The Daily Bible Reading: 1 Kings 3-4, 2 Chronicles 1. You can download our 2023 Daily Bible Reading Plan by clicking here. 

This Week’s Verse to Memorize: “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.” – Hebrews 2:9

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