Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the MYSTERY genre (04/05/07)
TITLE: The Light
By RuthAnn Cornelson
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“He’s not here!” her mind screamed at her, and the tears welled again, rolling down the worn paths on her cheeks. He’s not here.
How could this happen?! He knew the waters here better than the back of his hand. He’d grown up on them. They’d moved into this house ten years ago; taken over the family business. He’d lived in this house all his life, on this same beach, where they found his body washed up on the rocky shore just below the house, and pieces of his boat scattered further down. The police had come by and asked some questions – standard procedure. What happened that night; what had she done?
She thought it through again, searching for an answer. She’d gone to bed, tried to sleep. Around 2 AM she got up to get a glass of water. She squinted when she opened the door from the dark bedroom into the bright light of the house. In the kitchen she poured a glass of water from the fridge. The dull roll of thunder in the distance was comforting somehow, like the deep rumble of his voice. The wind was blowing rain against the window. She finished the water and turned out the light as she left the kitchen. She found her way down the dark hall back to the bedroom. That was all: she went to bed, got up, went to the kitchen for a drink of water, turned out the light and went back to bed. In the morning they were here, saying he was dead, on the beach below. None of it made sense.
She had to get out of here. She didn’t remember going there, but found herself sitting in an old wooden pew in the little white church on the outside of town. How ironic. So many times he had asked her to come here with him and she’d always had an excuse – next time. Now, because he was gone, she came here to be close to him. After he met Jesus six years ago while talking with a fishing buddy, he said his life had been completely changed; just like you always hear, like walking from darkness into light. And she had to admit she’d seen the change, the joy, the new kindness, the peace. But she’d never been ready.
“Jesus is the light of the world,” Pastor Jim boomed out. “The people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. Matthew chapter 4, verse 16.”(NIV)
Her throat was tight, she swallowed hard. She had been living in darkness so long, not just since that night, but long before. Evan had told her, but she hadn’t understood.
Pastor Jim continued, “When you accept Jesus into your life, you become His light to the world. Matthew chapter 5, verses 14 and 15, ‘You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.’” (NIV)
Evan had brought the light to their house, but she’d always hidden from it. Even though he was gone, the light he’d shone guided her now to its source.
She jumped when the music started. She recognized it immediately. It was one of Evan’s favorite songs. The familiar words rang out to her, “And I thank God for the lighthouse, I owe my life to Him. For Jesus is the lighthouse, and from the rocks of sin, He has shone His light around me that I might clearly see. If it wasn’t for the lighthouse, where would this ship be?” How many times had she listened to him singing along to that chorus? If it wasn’t for the lighthouse, where would this ship be?
A small gasp escaped her lips. She suddenly understood: she’d gotten up, gone to the kitchen for a drink of water, turned out the light and gone back to bed. Evan! I’m sorry!
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