Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Home for Christmas (11/20/08)
TITLE: Home at Last
By William Stevenson
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The Pastor sat in his study. Christmas is always a very busy time for someone in the ministry and the big day was just a week away. The Sunday school pageant had been on Friday. What a great success the teachers and children had made it. “I think it was our best to date,” he mused, “The star was glistening in her special outfit as she spoke the words. ‘I am a star a shining star, I can be seen from near or far.” Little Mary was a great choice for the star, her testimony was a bright light in the local Primary School.”
The jangle of the phone disturbed his reverie.
“Oh Pastor; I’ve just had news, James and his family were involved in a terrible four vehicle accident, the three children died instantly. James and Judith are both in intensive care and not expected to live.”
It was Dawn, whose husband had been in intensive care as a result of a stroke for three days already.
“Dawn, I’ll be right over. Give me five minutes,” he replied and picking up his keys he ran to his car.
As he drove over to Dawn’s house he thought of the situation.
“Dawn and Bob had moved to their town in the middle of the year and although Dawn was a faithful follower of the Lord Bob was still unsaved. Their only son James had led his mother to the Lord when his family found Jesus two years ago, but Bob tenaciously resisted every effort by James and the grandchildren saying, “Leave me alone. I don’t need God; I’ve got along fine without Him all my life.
Now, the grandchildren were home with the Lord and James and Judith could be sure of their home in heaven, but Bob was still lost. There is Dawn’s home now.”
As he entered the house Dawn fell into his arms weeping. What could he say or do at a time like this? He remembered a friend at Bible College handing him a booklet, “The Bushman’s Guide” by W. Arnold Young, saying, “There are some lovely illustrations in here. You never know when they could come in handy.” Right now he remembered a short record entitled “The way of Escape” which recounted how Harry Lauder reacted at the news of the death of his son.
“At such a time as this,” said the Scottish comedian, “a man usually goes one of three ways. Either he turns to alcohol to drown his sorrows, or he gives way to despair and drowns in his sorrow, or else he turns to God.”
After recounting this to Dawn they were sure which way they would go and spent time in prayer. Dawn was comforted.
On his way home the pastor called in at the hospital to look in on Bob. “Hello Bob, how are things going? He asked, taking Bob’s hand.
Bob wept openly, “I’ve just been visited by the police. My precious grandchildren are dead and James and Judith will probably not live and it’s entirely my fault. They were rushing to my side when they were involved in the accident.”
“No Bob. It’s not your fault or anyone else’s for that matter. The enemy of man and God, the devil is responsible. But God will have the last laugh because they’ll all be home with Him for Christmas. What about you? Are you ready to admit your wasted life of sin and surrender to Him?”
“You don’t know how wicked I’ve been.” “I don’t need to know, Bob. God’s word says that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved; I’ve told you this before. Will you call now?”
They bowed in prayer and Bob surrendered to God. In the next few days all three went to be with the Lord and Dawn was all alone. The pastor visited and comforted her with the assurance that all were at home in heaven.
On Christmas day Dawn was not in church and the pastor wondered why? Excusing himself from his family with the promise that he would not be long, he hurried to Dawn’s home again. He rang and rang but there was no answer. What could have happened? He entered the house calling, “Is there anybody home?” on reaching the bedroom he saw Dawn smiling peacefully in death. He called the ambulance but nothing could be done. At last the whole family were home for Christmas.
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