Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Drip (04/25/13)
TITLE: Through the Storm
By Marsha Barrow
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In the beginning, they brought him food and water. It wasn’t much, but it kept him from starving. But now he’s spent days without anything.
He hated being trapped here. Yelling, he begged someone to let him out. He cried, but no one came. Does he dare pray? Would God listen to such a lowly creature as he? Does he matter to God?
The next day it rained. Would anyone hear him through the angry storm? He ravenously lapped at the water dripping heavily from the roof and oozing under the doorway. Soon it spread on the dirt floor. He clawed and licked at the wet ground in desperation. Catastrophically, the thick mess filled his mouth causing him to choke.
Surrendering, he lay exhausted on the muddy floor, his breath a faint whisper. Quietly, death drew near, and he fought it no longer. The dripping rain mixed with dirt covered his limp body in sludge.
The little boy’s bedroom window faced the padlocked shed in the backyard of the old Noah House. It had been vacant for years. No one bothered to repair the dilapidated shambles.
Through the storm, he heard yelling and crying. It came from that ghastly shed, but no one lived in the house so why would anyone be there?
As he kneeled to say his prayers, he heard it again. Perhaps it was just his curiosity working overtime. Storms create all kinds of imaginations. But even over the crashing thunder, he heard whimpering.
The little boy ran to his dad. Dad knew he couldn’t trespass, but his son was adamant and innocently reminded him that God would want them to help someone in need.
The Stewards had dedicated their lives to helping God’s people. Mr. Steward dialed the police station, “My son heard crying coming from the shed at the old Noah House. It would ease our minds if you would send someone to investigate. I can meet them there.”
“As a matter of fact, I personally checked the place after we ejected some squatters last week. There's no one there now."
“I understand that sir, but my son refuses to sleep. I am sure it is just a little boy’s active imagination with the storm and all, but please take another look. I would appreciate it.”
“I should check out the place again anyway.”
Chief Adams pushed at the front door and stepped into the musty dwelling, tightening his face in disgust. The squatters had gone, but they had left their stench behind. He investigated each room, but found no one. A sound from the front porch pulled him away. Mr. Steward stood ready to inspect the shed, and truthfully, Chief Adams welcomed the company.
“Why anyone would want to lock this place is beyond me. The boards are rotten, the windows have broken panes, and if not for the padlock, the door would fall off.”
Chief Adams cut the lock and peered inside. "Nothing in here," he announced, "except a lot of mud on the --- Oh, No!" he stopped in dismay and gasped. "Poor little fellow! Must have been here for days, too late now. He’s dead.”
Adams pushed the body aside and looked into the shed, "The squatters must have left him behind.”
Mr. Steward lifted the small body from the mire, “We should at least give him a decent burial.” Suddenly, a small eye opened, and a long matted tail began to twitch frantically, “Would you look at that? He’s alive!”
Mr. Steward felt tears run down his cheeks as the puppy tried to lick his rescuer’s hand with a cracked and dirty tongue, “I have just the home for you.”
The boy did not hear his father come home. After bathing and feeding the pup, Dad wrapped the whimpering little fellow in a soft blanket, crept into his son’s room, and gently laid the bundle on the bed, “God created all animals and expects his people to care for them. Psalm 50:10 says, ‘For every animal of the forest is mine…’ Care for him as God cares for you.”
“Oh dad, he’s so cute, and because God allowed me to hear him crying through the dripping rain, I will call him DRIP.”
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