I couldn’t believe it when I opened my eyes and saw that I was lying on a hospital bed.
My head and arms were covered with bandages and I was feeling pain. I looked at a lady who was by my bedside and realized that it was my mother. I opened my mouth to speak:
“Mom, what happened?”
She patted me on my shoulder and assured me that the doctors had said everything was under control.
“What everything was under control?” I wondered to myself.
As I tried to remember exactly why I was in hospital, my friend’s mom budged into my ward with tears trickling down her cheeks. My mom promptly went to meet her and that is when I overheard them speaking hiding behind the door about my friend, James.
“Oh my God. James’s dead!” I overheard my mom whisper in a shaking voice.
“What Mom! Who’s dead? Oh, no, but we left the beach together! If only James had known…” I cried.
My mom rushed to calm me down. She didn’t want me to know more about James’s predicament.
I got to my senses and started to think about what had actually transpired that day. James and I had been friends and neighbors since our childhood. We were both in our final year at university. It had become our norm that at the end of each semester we would in the company of our girlfriends go to the Lake and watch or play beach soccer. We real had the passion for the game on the beach. It was so refreshing and exciting, with lots of fun; and to imagine that, that fun had ended in a tragedy; it pained me.
That day we had gone to watch beach soccer at the lake leaving our girlfriends behind. To our surprise a lot of people were just lingering around lazily when we arrived at the lake in our jeep. I had never seen the beach in such a state of calmness before. Some were getting into a houseboat. I asked one chap what was going on.
“There’s a revival church crusade by some Pastor in that boat.” The chap answered.
It bored us so much as we were looking forward to play beach soccer. This church thing was a non-starter to us. We had never attended any church before. Instead of returning back home, I suggested that we enter the boat not for the purpose of attending the church, but to look for good and beautiful girls. When we entered the boat the bible was about to be read and the pastor was standing in front.
“Matthew 24 verse 35 reads: ‘ Heaven and earth will pass away but my words will never pass away’ (NIV)
The pastor preached greatly. It was his conclusion to his message that touched me greatly.
“If you cling on to earthly things what will you do when they pass? Come forward and receive Jesus, his word remain forever.”
A handful moved forward. I nudged James so we could go forward and repent. He frowned at me and shouted:
“ Don’t disappoint me. Have you ever seen or met Jesus or God before? Is there anyone who has ever seen them? I have never seen them myself. So how can I believe in something I have never seen or meet? We entered this boat, not for the purpose of repenting, but to look for real church girls. So, why now are we now talking about repenting? Anyway, I do not blame you. You do not know what you like. If you want to repent, you can go ahead and do so. As for me James, I can not do that; but let me warn you that if you go against my words our friendship is over.”
I tried to convince him but he budged out of the boat and waited for me in the car. The pastor prayed for me and I repented. I went back to the car. It was when we were driving in the main road that leads to our homes when the left front tyre burst and the vehicle overturned. James died on the spot and I was ferried to the hospital with serious injuries. He died a sinful man.
As I lay on my bed I wept for my friend. It is true that a lost chance cannot be regained, and a gained chance cannot be forgotten. James lost the chance to eternity with Jesus.
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