TITLE: Out of Egypt
By Jean Thornberry
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“Come back here, you wretched slave!” Their shouts paralyzed me with fear as I ran for my life.
My battered body trembled as I made my escape. My bloody, shackled wrists shook as I struggled to remain upright. Tears streamed down my face as I felt the scorching desert sand burning through my bare feet.
Egyptian soldiers hotly pursued me across the barren desert.
There was no turning back. I had finally escaped from Egypt. For 20 years I had been a prisoner there, taking beating after beating from my cruel taskmasters.
It wasn’t supposed to be that way. They promised me untold wealth, riches, and fame if I became a citizen and served them. How could I refuse?
The very instant I sold my soul, on went the shackles and crack went the whip. “Let me go!” I would scream.
“There’s no escape!” they cruelly laughed.
How foolish I was! I sold myself into slavery. No amount of wealth was worth the trouble I endured.
“Enough is enough!” I resolved as I sprinted across the scorching desert. The thundering sound of their footsteps kept my weary legs moving.
After what seemed like an eternity, I reached a great chasm. Across the chasm, I could see lush green rolling hills and pure blue mountain streams. Meadows arrayed with beautiful flowers stretched as far as the eye could see.
Reality settled in like a dark cloud. There was no way to cross. I turned and saw the soldiers approaching in the distance. I quivered with fear.
The captain shouted, “Go ahead! Try to cross that chasm! Die! Or you can come back to Egypt, and we’ll abuse your carcass more! The choice is yours.” He laughed sadistically and headed back to Egypt.
I chose the chasm. I would rather die than spend another moment in bondage!
With every fiber of my being, I resolved to cross or die trying.
I stared across at Paradise. How I longed to rest my weary body there!
Suddenly, a figure robed in the purest white appeared on the other side. A gasp escaped my lips as I realized where I was. I was standing in the very presence of God Himself!
“How could I bridge the gap?” I wondered.
Just then, a bridge appeared! It was as if my mind created it. It consisted of seven rough wooden planks. Oddly enough, each plank contained a reason why I should enter Paradise. My planks were:
I proceeded to cross….
I fell right through the first plank. My “good works” went up in flames. Fortunately, I was able to grab on to the next one and pull myself up.
“Ok. I am a good person. I..
As I fell, every bad thing I’ve ever done came to mind. Surely I was not “good” before God.
My legs dangled over the chasm as my hands gripped the next plank for dear life.
I endured fall after fall till I reached the final plank.
“This is it.” I thought to myself. “If I fall through this time, I’ll die.”
“Ok. I am very religious. I…
As I plummeted, an angel swooped down and rescued me. It was only by the grace of God that I eluded certain death.
I found myself staring at God across the chasm once more. Faced with the realization that I could not bridge the gap, I cried.
“God, there is no way I could reach You. Please reach me.”
To my astonishment, a rough wooden cross appeared, bridging the chasm! It was stained with crimson blood.
A gasp escaped my lips. This bridge was built by God Himself! He spared no expense in the construction. It cost Him His life!
I was in awe of His sacrifice. As I walked across, I was met by the Lord Himself. He reached out His hand for mine, and helped me over the hump of the cross.
The moment I touched Him, all of my pain vanished. My shackles fell off and all my scars were healed. Strange, it was as if my scars were absorbed by His.
Tears rolled down my face as I looked into His eyes.
“What a price you paid! I am yours, my Lord.”
He lifted me up and gently spoke, “Come, my child. I will give you rest.” He held my hand as we crossed into Paradise.
“This is your home from now on. You are free.”
“I love you, Jesus.”
Contentment welled up in my soul. For the first time in my life, I was no longer serving cruel taskmasters. I was now serving my loving Lord!
Every painful memory of Egypt was erased from my mind. Only joy remained.
Copyright 2008, Jean Thornberry. All rights reserved.
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