The Life and Experiences of a Layman by Charles Boller

Pages 38 - 42

Here he went into the first house and asked for permission to stay until the weather subsided. "Most certainly, of course," was the answer. "Hey, where are you going?" they asked him. "To Buffalo," he answered.

"Now Marie," said the housewife, "this would be a good opportunity to send your brother a letter." To this Marie responded "Oh, my dear lady, my brother died of Cholera. I have already written three letters and received no answer. He no longer lives." Then she cried bitterly. "Miss, I am only too happy to look for your brother and I solemnly promise you to bring the letter to him," said the journeyman baker.

Three weeks later as we sat at the table, there was a knock at the door. When we opened the door a a fine German young man stood before us and asked if Karl Boller lives here. He had a letter from his sister Marie. I bade the good angel enter. There was joy upon joy. The many faithful prayers found reception in a wondrous manner.

The contents of the letter read as follows: Dear Brother! I am in Ashtabula. Come and get me." (Hey where in the world is Ashtabula?" I asked.

"Thirty-five miles west of Cleveland" was the response.) "I am sick, come and get me. I came from Cincinnati and now I am here."

I had offered $25.00 in the newspapers for information of where she was staying and I thought that perhaps this journeyman was after the money. "How can you prove she is my sister?" I asked him. To this he replied, "Through the letter which she wrote and that you now have in your hand."

"How did you come by my sister's letter?" I asked him further, to which he communicated that he was a baker and had worked in St. Louis and it came to him that he should follow the German tradition and come to Buffalo on foot since money for journeyman work was usually rare. He related then how he had made my sister's acquaintance in Ashtabula as had been described. We took him in until I returned from Ashtabula with my sister.

What joy as my sister witnessed my arrival in Ashtabula through the window. In a second she lay in my arms and my new cylinder hat flew twenty feet up the street.

Oh, how grateful we were to the Lord for his great grace and help.

The baker Bosch remained with us for three weeks. One evening he went with us to the meeting - at the time we were having a revival. He came with us in order to pray and sing with the penitents. Adam Rosch asked him if he too was converted. "Oh, I might still make a little mistake," was his answer. Two years later he returned to us. We clothed him from head to foot and for a second time he stayed with us for three weeks.

How did Marie come to be in Ashtabula? On the way from Cincinnati to Buffalo two young people made Marie's acquaintance and told her that they too wanted to travel to Buffalo. In Columbus, Ohio they bought their travel tickets. The young man asked Marie if she would be so good as to lend him money since he didn't have any small change. He promised when they arrived in Buffalo he would pay her back. She agreed and gave him the money. As the train arrived in Ashtabula and Marie had no more money with which to come to Buffalo she had to get off the train.

She sought lodging with a family, which gladly took her in because the housewife was sick and Marie could perform a good service and make herself useful. In the three months of her stay in Ashtabula she wrote three letters which never reached the post office because the woman never took them. She held on to them because she wanted Marie to stay.

The lesson of this important development is this: the loving God hears faithful prayers. How wondrous are his works. God instilled the thought in the baker as he traveled through Ashtabula to return, look for and find lodging at the house where my sister was in service and because of this incident she was found. I had spent many nights in prayer with God. My sister also prayed to the Lord for help and the Lord heard our pleas. Even the baker learned to pray and as I believe, he converted to the Lord. May the Lord be eternally thanked for his wondrous help!


15. Prayer - a Mighty Power


"The prayer of faith," a modern author says most appropriately, "is a mighty power unlike any other, and it is a fact that with it nothing is impossible."

"We might ask what else it might be; a large or a small thing, a spiritual or corporeal thing; faith makes our request a righteous claim before God. The prayer of faith directs the almighty arm of God's worldly regime and compels God. Faith has a great God, and thus he requires great things and receives great things. But he who will exercise such faith must turn to God in complete obedience."


14. John Brown's Home and His Grave


It was in the year 1903 that my wife and I stayed for four weeks in the beautiful forest and Hotel Resimond in the Adirondack Mountains because of my health. Six miles from this hotel is where the well-known John Brown once lived. Before the war he created quite a sensation in all the southern states. With a couple of men he had taken a southern arsenal. In the end, he and his men were captured and hanged. His body was given over to his friends, who buried him here. A beautiful gravestone with

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Text provided by Lockwood Library, State University of New York at Buffalo, BX8080.B65

Susan Kriegbaum-Hanks