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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Inner Strength (04/20/06)

TITLE: Beyond the Mirror
By Jesus Puppy


Beyond the Mirror.

A thick mist fell in a blinding fog, heavy as a curtain draped over the world. Even as the light grew, the sun was no more than a disk in the haze. The sound of an approaching car seemed like the ghost of a haunting dream, filled with fear of unknown hunters seeking to lay traps for the unwary Christians in the last days.

Beneath the overhang of a building that looked as it would fall in the next gust of wind, Jason watched the fog roll in the wake of the passing car, expecting to hear the brakes as the car turned aside. He said a prayer of thanks as it continued on, silence once more enveloping his world.

Months had run into years while Jason had been on the run, hiding moment by moment, fearing to show himself to any but those he found on the run as well. He had found many in the passed months that sought a better way; a way of peace in the world that had gone mad in a moment. Some of those had been taken, others made it to safety. Some, like the family he now cared for, used those like him to guide them, taking them to safe places away from the hunters.

Looking over his shoulder into the ruined building, Jason could see the darkened outlines of the man and woman who he worked for as guide and protector. Leading them and their children to the safe house near the mountains, where they would be handed over to others for transport to the hidden colony; no more than a group of caves in the mountains. The numbers hidden there grew daily, and more space would be needed soon.

Over the last months he had made the trip ten times, with only one casualty, but he knew it was only a matter of time before they caught up with him. The blessings of his new-found Lord were growing thin, his fears growing more with every day. He could have stayed at the colony, but it was never his way, hiding when he could be working to help others.

As his fear grew less, Jason prayed for strength to see him safely through the day. Hoping that this would be the last group, and the end, the great and final return of his new-found God would put an end to the running forever.

All holy Father God and Lord of mercy,
Mighty King and Creator of all that has life,
Bless me in my walk this day.
Be within as the path grows darker,
My trial is now upon me in my weakness,
Show brightly Your strength within.

I walk in Your way, merciful God,
To do what is good, and right,
Yet in the world of men I must stand a while.
Let me not falter in the trial that comes,
Grant Your strength within me Father,
That I walk with You in that final day.

Create within my lowly heart the means,
That I would seek Your presence always,
Rejoicing every moment, lifting voice in praise.
Place in me the greater good of Your hope,
Help me to see the blessed day,
Even in the midst of the night.

The burden I bear grows heavy on my soul,
As I watch people fall by the wayside,
Turning to revel in the shadows of sin.
I plead with Thee, mighty Lord and King,
Just in all Your ways, let me not stumble,
As my eyes grow dim from much weeping.

Give of Your great love and light, O Lord,
A beacon of strength within my lowly being,
That I might once more stand in hope.
Let not my life be downcast in the eyes of man,
Nor my struggles be seen as weakness,
But as a greater glory to Your name.

I seek that my worth is but a mirror of You,
Your glory shining forth as the new sun,
The morning star of the first days.
Renew Life within me, gracious Father,
That all that is seen within my trials,
Is the light of Your strength within.

As the light of day grew brighter and the fog started to burn off, Jason woke the others, and started their day with a cold meal, apples found in a field the day before. Slowly the family began to move about, gathered their small packs and prepared to head out, seeking a blessing in the arms of their God.

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This article has been read 1173 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Rita Garcia04/27/06
Yes,in our weakest moments we find our strength in Him.
Great entry!!

Blessings, Rita
Jan Ackerson 04/29/06
What a gripping story! I'd be very interested in a full-length version of this, but I particularly wanted to comment on the poem / prayer, which was absolutely outstanding, and could even stand alone. Wonderful.
Ann Darcy04/29/06
I agree with Jan, I would love to see more. And I loved the poem/prayer as well! Thanks!
T. F. Chezum05/01/06
I'll agree with the others. The poem / prayer was excellent, and I also would like to see more of the story. Good job.
Kathleen Morris05/01/06
Absolutely wonderful! I found this piece very creative and the poetry outstanding. It blended well. Great job!
Jean Elizabeth 05/01/06
What a beautiful and powerful prayer! I was intrigued by Jason and his story. I agree - I would have liked to know more. Good job.
Dr. Sharon Schuetz05/01/06
Great story. Both the story and the poem were so well done it was a joy to read.
Maxx .05/03/06
First, the scene is riveting. The crisis is strong. The writing is good. BUT... and I mention this because you lament being STILL in intermediate (as you stated on the boards) ... there is a problem with alliteration. Repetative words and word sounds in successive sentences. I counted many, many of these in your story. The solution? There's a free site that can help find these sorts of things. Run your story through the free parts of Autocrit.com. You'll see all sorts of ways to polish you piece up. THEN, go to Readplease.com and download their free text reader. Listen to your story being read back to you. You'll pick up all sorts of other things. Try these two hints and really buff up your obvious skills. This piece could really shine with just a little bit of polishing!
Jesus Puppy 05/04/06
For those who said they wanted more... (if it doesn't work as a link, copy and paste)

Karen Rice05/05/06
JP, you continue to surprise me. I absolutely love your natural style and way with words. I agree that you need to boost yourself up and over a notch and run with what you will learn, blessing others in return.

You know that you're on the right track when the we read what you've posted and think, "man, wish I thought of that..." (smile).

Good work!
Jan Ackerson 05/26/06
I've just re-visited this piece, and I'm going to use it on the FrontPage Showcase for the week of June 18. Really, really good job!
Amy Michelle Wiley 06/20/06
Wow, congrats on getting showcased! I like this one, too. :-)
Jesus Puppy 06/21/06
Soon to be edited and placed in full in the regular submissions for short stories. As it is too long for one piece, it will be set in two parts.. God bless and enjoy.
Rita Garcia06/21/06
Congrats, Pup, on being showcased.
Sandra Petersen 06/22/06
I read Maxx's comments and decided to take his advice for myself. His comments would be useful for all of us. This story is very suspenseful, hinting at the end times. There will be those who are charged with the responsibility of concealing a remnant during the tribulation, and their duty will be very dangerous. Congratulations at being in the FW Showcase this week!
Jen Davis06/22/06
A truly beautiful prayer and an intriguing story. Very well done. Congrats on being showcased.
Christopher Jenyns06/26/06
Showcase is good. Showcase is really good... and you got it!

I want the first sentence of the poem for the ceiling in my bedroom above my bed. It is delightful!