Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Search Engine (10/06/11)
TITLE: Nicodemus: The Next Generation
By V. Joy Ocasio
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You look for a simple piece of information on a widely used search engine, like Google or Bing, and what does it give you.
Nothing. Nothing good. Nothing a good Christian girl like me is going to repeat anyways.
The internet, the World Wide Web, and every single existing search engine, they are not my friends.
I smash my open palm onto the keyboard. I then watch in horror as my computer visibly starts to fidget and speak in computer talk for a few seconds before going totally and completely black.
Looks like I’m done researching that way.
Library here I come.
A five minute walk, a seven minute wait, and a thirteen minute bus ride later, and I’m at the town library.
I walk up and down the aisles to find a single book to help my research. I find it fairly quickly. I stare at the book before reverently picking it up. Then I put it back on the shelf. Then I pick it up again.
I think I’m breaking out in hives.
I grab the book and a couple other paperbacks to cover my trail.
It’s time to brave the computers again.
I make my way over to the library’s computer lab. The library has a special system set up for the library members to use the computer lab. Year long members get five hours free on the computers every week. My parents didn’t buy their old computer until I was fifteen, so the only access I had to a computer was here. Then I turned seventeen, and brought my own laptop.
It’s been awhile since I’ve had to come to the library for some computer time.
I flash my membership card, all detective like, and go to the most secluded computer. I log in and take a deep breath.
I type in JESUS CHRIST, SON OF GOD.
I need some answers about life.
I spend an hour searching before I come across something promising. The website has links I can click on to answer my questions. I spend another hour just reading through some of those before I click on the link-How do I get to Heaven?
The page starts with what I assume is a Bible verse. It says John 3:16.
I don’t even read the rest of the page. I grab for the pile of books next to me and open the book that makes me hyperventilate. It’s a Bible.
Actually, the cover says Holy Bible. Not sure if that makes a difference.
I don’t really know where to look. I flip towards the front. A huge wave of air escapes my mouth in relief. A table of contents. I look for a book titled John.
There’s like four books called John in here! How am I supposed to know where to go?
I decide to try the first one listed and work my way from there. I navigate my way to the book of John. I find chapter three and start reading in verse one. The story is about a man named Nicodemus who sneaks away to talk to some guy named Jesus. As I keep reading, I see that Nicodemus is a man with a lot of questions, too. However, Jesus seems to have all the answers to his questions.
I can really relate to Nicodemus. I feel just as confused as he seems to be by what Jesus says.
Then I come to verse sixteen:
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Who is God’s son? What does it mean to believe in Him? I only have to believe in Him to get eternal life? God loves the world? Does that mean me?
The questions just swim through my head. Back and forth. Back and forth. Like the little goldfish you see in those huge tanks at pet stores.
I’m not ready to give up looking for answers. The questions and worries about what’s next are just too big, too important for me to ignore them. I’ve got to keep searching.
And I NEED to find out if God loves me. If He really sent His Son to die for me. Just so I could have eternal life.
I need to know.
Cause a God like that is worth getting to know.
Maybe I should try a church next…
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