In Part 1 of our story, the home where Amanda, a young Waldensian girl, lived with her parents was being searched by soldiers who had been told the family had a Bible. To be caught with a Bible was to die!
One soldier kept a careful eye on Amanda and her mother, while the other began to ransack the house.
Amanda watched with amazement as he went from corner to corner, not missing a nook or cranny. He tested all the boards of the floor and the timber of the walls to see if there might be a secret hiding place. Obviously he had done this before.
He came to where Mother had been making her bread. Surely he would find it now! He opened the firebox to see if there were any remnants of a burnt book inside. Where could Mother have hidden it, and how could she maintain such calmness and composure? The soldier opened the cupboards and emptied them. He opened the oven door, but all that was there were loaves of bread baking.
"I told you that you would not find a Bible in this house," Mother reminded them. Amanda was beginning to believe her. Finally, in frustration, they left, thinking they had received a false report.
Amanda held her breath until they could no longer hear the horses. Then, still whispering from fear, Amanda asked, "Mother, wherever did you put the Bible?"
"Let me take the bread out of the oven first; I was afraid it might get too done before they left. . . . There now, doesn’t that look fine?" Mother said, holding up the first loaf. "Isn’t it wonderful how the Lord always provides for our needs? Dear, we must thank the Lord for protecting us, for surely if He had not sent His angel we would have been caught."
"But, Mother, where is the Bible? Did an angel really take it?"
"Not exactly, my dear," Mother answered. "But an angel did tell me what to do. Come, let us kneel and thank God for His protection."
"Now, dear," said Mother upon rising from her knees, "We will have some fresh bread for supper when Father comes. He should be here shortly." Then, as though remembering Amanda’s question, she said, "You will find out about the Bible then."
Now Amanda watched the path for Father. Upon seeing him, she ran to give him the exciting details of the day. "Wherever Mother put the Bible I do not know," Amanda said breathlessly.
The house was still a wreck, but the table was set, and there in the middle of it was a loaf of bread. It was not the prettiest loaf of bread, as Mother had evidently not had time to smooth it out when the soldiers came. After grace, Mother cut the bread. Usually Father cut it, but this time Mother insisted. How carefully, almost reverently, she cut through the crust, as though this loaf of bread was the most precious thing on earth.
"Mother! There is the Bible!" Amanda exclaimed. Cautiously, Mother peeled the bread away from the precious Book. It seemed undamaged, as though miraculously preserved.
"So that is what happened to the Bible!" said Amanda in wonder. "You wrapped it in the bread dough and stuck it in the oven. Surely, if you had not been studying the Bible while making your bread you could not have hidden it, and the soldiers would have found it."
"That is right," said Mother. "When the soldiers came, I did not have time to even think. It was as if an angel spoke to me, and my hands immediately complied. I wrapped the Bible in the bread dough, put it in the last loaf pan, and put it into the oven. I would never have been able to think of it so quickly. Surely the Lord has protected us."
(cited June 7, 2002).