Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Grandparent(s) (04/03/08)
TITLE: Oma's Storm
By Tim Pickl
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"You know what that means, right?" answered Leah, while chopping up some celery.
"God's tryin' to give me some direction--"
"Just like we prayed."
"Right! I'm going to be a little late tonight, Dear."
"Okay, Dear. Be careful, Dear, and watch out for the deer!" Leah quipped.
"You're so funny."
"I love you, Leah."
"I love you, too, Dear!"
Nathan prayed as he drove the 67 miles out of town toward his grandparents' home.
"Lord, I know you're leading me out to see my Oma. My precious Oma. Thank You, Jesus...."
Tears welled up in his eyes.
"I know she's still hurting deep inside from losing Opa last year."
At this point, he started crying.
"I miss Opa so much--I can only imagine how much Oma must miss him...."
He pulled over for a few minutes.
"Lord, I pray for Your protection...and healing... emotional healing... in Jesus' Name... in Jesus' Name."
He pulled back out onto the highway and turned on a Christian radio station.
"There is a Tornado Watch for the following counties--"
"That's not good." Nathan said, glancing up into the sky.
I'm almost there now, so I might as well go the rest of the way, he thought.
As Nathan got closer to the exit to his Grandmother's home, the wind picked up and the skies darkened. Then, just as he turned, rain and large hail hit his truck like a wall of water and ice.
"Whoa! What a storm! I can hardly see where I'm goin'..." Nathan said to himself. The storm slowed Nathan down, but he was determined to keep going. He knew Leah was praying for him this very moment.
God called me out here for a reason.
"There it is--"
As he pulled into the driveway, he noticed the house was completely dark.
"They musta lost power out here."
Nathan grabbed his keys and forced the door open in the wind. As he got out of the truck, the eerie sound of a tornado warning siren started.
He ran up the stairs to the front door and knocked. No answer.
He waited. Knocked again.
Still, no answer.
Finally, he tried the door and let himself in.
"Oma?! OOOhhhhma? Are you here?"
Lightning flashed and thunder crackled. The wind picked up into a furious frenzy and spun into a terrible tornado. Oma’s cat meowed loudly in the hallway in fear.
Nathan found a note on the kitchen table. He couldn't believe what he read,
"I cannot stand the thought of living without my love any more--" It went on, but fear-filled adrenaline shot thought Nathan. He threw the note down and ran through the house--he found his Oma lying on her bed with a bottle of prescription pills in her hand.
She looked at him, incredulously. Her cat jumped on the bed.
"Oh, thank God, you're okay."
Like a runaway train, the tornado sped toward the house. Nathan knew they didn't have much time. He scooped up Oma. The bottle of pills spilled out onto the floor. He carried her over his shoulder and went down into the den of the basement. Lightning flashed again. He set Oma on the couch, away from the window. Thunder clashed. As he pulled two blankets over her, the tornado ferociously smashed into Oma's house.
Nathan shielded his grandma with his body.
The tornado roared for several minutes, and decimated the house above them.
After the storm finally passed, Nathan knelt beside Oma and looked up.
The destruction was unbelievable.
"Now I know why....thank You, Jesus." Nathan whispered.
With a shaking, feeble hand, Oma reached out and patted Nathan's arm. "I am so glad you're here, my Nathan." Tears came, and Oma couldn’t speak.
"Oh, my Oma, I love you so much." He hugged her. "What happened? Why--"
Oma patted Nathan's arm a little faster. "I can't stand it any more. I don't want to live alone."
Nathan smiled, looking up and around with his eyes. "Well, it looks like you got your wish. You sure can't stay here any more."
"Maybe it's my time to begin again."
"You can live with us."
"I would like that--very much."
Oma’s cat agreed, with a meeeowww.
Reference: Oma & Opa = German/Dutch for Grandma & Grandpa
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