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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Leadership (03/14/05)

TITLE: Sound the Alarm
By Mitzi Busby


The watchman stood atop the rustic wooden gate that reached high over the fortification. The villagers below slept snug in their beds knowing someone was keeping watch to alert of impending danger. He held a flaming torch which allowed him to peer out into the dense forest and watch for movements. Often times it was a squirrel or deer that wandered by and captured his attention.

“Eli, what was that noise?” A restless voice called out into the darkness. “Cal, I got ya covered. Go to sleep,” Eli replied. Cal ambled back to bed, hesitantly.

Eli settled in for a long night of look out. Would he see looters and robbers who wanted to close in to take what was left of dwindling supplies? The watchman stayed wide – eyed.

Eli climbed down from the wall after several hours to take a walk and stretch his aching legs. His watch only came around once a month, but it was a dreaded task. Everything was ridding on his ability to watch for predators. The night watchman lit an old lantern using his torch. He trimmed the wick so that he could see several steps in front of him as he walked outside of the gate to the encampment.

“Hoot, Hoot,” went the eerie owl. Eli jumped, almost dropping his lantern in the dense blackness. “Stupid bird. I ought to shoot you.” With the lantern in his right hand, shotgun over his shoulder and bugle hung from his side, Eli guarded the post. He had never had an occasion to sound the alarm with the bugle or the bell at the gate tower. Would tonight be his night? Would he be the hero?

Eli felt a huge weight upon his narrow shoulders as the guardian of the 200 some folks in the camp. Only one time could he remember the alarm ringing out in the stillness of a winter night. The cold was stinging, almost cutting through their leather coats. A group of travelers had stumbled upon the village looking for a safe place to rest and food to eat. They turned out to be no threat at all to the villagers, but Eli remembered the chaos as the bell rang out like a cannon into the night. All the men and older boys drew arms and prepared to protect the others.

We are called to be watchmen, calling out to the others, urging them to come to Christ before the final call rings out. We anticipate the trumpet sounding and all the saints gathering. Time is short and we must be calling out, even now. We must tell them of the One who provided the bridge to the Father. We too have an important task upon us. We must spread the Word which He has entrusted to us. The Light within us shines forth to mark the way. In Him there is protection, love, peace and joy. Others must know before it is too late. If you have a voice, you too must sound the call.

Eli looked up into the sky as he was far away in thought. The oranges, reds and yellows of the sunrise painted the sky. The inhabitants of the fortress gathered together for Sunday morning worship as they sang, “The King is coming, praise God, he’s coming for me.”

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Member Comments
Member Date
Lynne Gaunt03/22/05
This is a nice story. The images of the watchmen gave me a word picture that held over to the lesson portion at the end. Ever vigilent. Thanks for the reminder. God bless.
Nancy Hardy03/23/05
Great imagery and a powerful reminder that time is of the essence; we must be on the ready, for ... the King is coming, indeed! Nice job- Nancy
donna robinson03/23/05
I think the next to last paragraph would have read better if it had been the last. Because I think that is the last thing you want the reader pondering. Good imagery here.