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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Father (as in paternal parent, not God) (04/10/08)

TITLE: Battle of the Bans
By Tim Pickl
04/14/08


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A misty May morning greets the rising sun over the remains of The Great City. Streaming sunlight refracts through the fog, creating a yellow-orange glow around Missionary Memorial Coliseum.

Clasping his hands behind his back, The Father silently strolls six times around The Coliseum, contemplating today’s agenda. With every step, his long, white beard flaps against a flowing, shiny robe. He circles The Coliseum a seventh time, and faces the entrance, raising both hands.

He shouts, “Praise the Lord!” then softly adds, “Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.”

Then, The Father steps through the door. Simultaneously, the fog dissipates and the sun shines on The Coliseum’s entrance, revealing a hastily hung banner:

Welcome to THE BATTLE OF THE BANS

Inside The Coliseum, The Father gently locks the Sound Booth door, and sits in the Commander’s Chair.

The Sound Booth becomes his prayer closet.

Lord, I pray they become One, as we are.

A few hours later, half of The Father’s 12 children, with their families, drive up outside of The Coliseum in several aging Alternative Fuel Vehicles. Unpacking large signs, they begin a protest march, walking back-and-forth by the entrance in pairs. Bored, they whine and complain about the previous unfair BAN battles.

Two stroll by, revealing painted messages on double-sided signs, scrawled in large, black letters:

BAN SINGING
MUSIC ONLY


Then, another pair:

BAN MUSIC
SINGING ONLY


Then, the last pair:

BAN BLARING
REVERENCE ONLY


In a cloud of black smoke, a rusted, yellow School Bus pulls up near the protestors. Since The Great War, diesel fuel is difficult to find, so The Children use whatever bio-fuel they can scavenge.

Three more of The Father’s children get out of the bus, squinting in the morning light, followed by their families. Together, they push their way through the protesters and enter The Coliseum with little resistance.

PRAZORS is proudly painted on the side of the bus.

Another bus pulls up behind the School Bus, adding to the cloud of smoke. It’s an abandoned Tourist Bus--very plush inside. The last three children of The Father, along with their families, exit the bus, and peacefully make their way through the entrance.

In neat, even letters, WORSHIPPURRZ is painted on their bus.

The Prazors and The Worshippurrz make last-minute preparations for the big competition. Electrical generators are fired-up and sound equipment is tested.

Meanwhile, hiding in the Sound Booth, The Father works alone, praying, while making sound board adjustments.

Hundreds of Survivors of The Great War hobble into the open-air Coliseum, simply happy to have some entertainment. Soon, the atmosphere is filled with the cacophony of conversation.

At 11:30 a.m., The Mayor steps up to the microphone, waves a hand, and waits until everyone is quiet.

“Good Morning. Today is a great day! While we await The Father’s return, we will finally determine the best way to honor God, either by praise—

The Prazors enthusiastically cheer.

“—or, by worship!

The Worshippurrz bow down on the ground.

LET THE BATTLE BEGIN!

The Survivors erupt into excited shouts of approval. Outside, the pair carrying the BAN BLARING sign disapprovingly shakes their heads.

The Worshippurrz step onstage to 3 microphones, as their children go to musical instruments behind them. One of them sincerely pleads, “Come, let us worship, and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker. Worship is deep—it’s sung from the heart. It’s a slow song.”

As The Worshippurrz sing “Amazing Grace”, most of The Survivors cry, while others kneel in the mud that once was grass, weeping.

In the Sound Booth, The Father weeps.

Finally, they stand and applaud--except The Prazors.

Then, assertively, The Prazors take the stage. One starts a fast drumbeat, and the others clap in synch. Wiping tears away, half of The Survivors clap with them.

One Prazor shouts, “Let’s ALL praise the Lord with a cutting-edge FAST SONG!” Then, he raps Psalm 150. As he begins each verse, another musician joins the crescendo. Finally, he roars the last verse, “Let everything that has breath, Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD!

“Hallelujah!” The Survivors shout excitedly in agreement.

Suddenly, like a mighty rushing wind, The Father appears before them. With authority, he asks, “My dear children, why battle amongst yourselves? We honor God when we worship, and praise, from His Word. That way, everyone in Christ wins!

One Survivor starts laughing contagiously. Soon, all join her.

The joy of The Lord causes The Children to become One.



+++

Reference: Psalms 150, 96:9, 95:6, 133:1; John 17; Acts 2:4; Nehemiah 8:10


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This article has been read 990 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 04/18/08
Wow, this is a very creative and well-written satire. Right on point.

I'm afraid it's not really on topic, but I enjoyed it immensely. You have a refreshing and unique writing style.
Patty Wysong04/19/08
Wow! Now that's creative!! Once I understood what was going on I really enjoyed it. We have something similar going on in our church--minus the bans and bickering. Super creative!!
Gerald Shuler 04/21/08
Well said, well written. Can you imagine this entry as a Christian Reality show on TV?
LauraLee Shaw04/21/08
Even though it's not on topic, this is a really clever, creative and thought-provoking piece. Definitely can see this performed or published. Well done. I know God will be glorified over and over again with this.
Betty Castleberry04/21/08
Despite not being on topic, this is SO well done. The creativity is awesome, and it's very well written. Kudos.
Joanney Uthe04/21/08
Great message in a very creative package. Good job.
Joy Faire Stewart04/21/08
What a wonderful message and so unique. Great opening paragraph and the rest did not disappoint. Love the writing style.
dub W04/21/08
How absolutely creative and out-of-the box. Well done, I loved it.
Joshua Janoski04/22/08
This was a great idea. While it may not speak the topic loud and clear, the writing itself should not go unrecognized, because it is wonderful.

Tim, I really enjoy your entries each week, because you always bring something new and exciting to the table. Whether you place with this one or not, I appreciate you sharing it. :)
Debbie Wistrom04/23/08
So creative! Love the PRAZORS and the WORSHIPPURRZ. I got a bit lost in the groups outside who were picketing. This had a Bill and Ted feel to it to me for some reason, maybe it was the battle and the fog. Keep up the good words.
Sara Harricharan 04/23/08
Oh how fun! I can see this as being a longer story! I loved the sayings in bold for the two-sided signs and especially how they all became 'one' at the end through laughter. Great job-this is fresh and with a good message. ^_^
LaNaye Perkins04/23/08
This is written in a very clever way with a great message. Well done.