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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Pastor (11/30/06)

TITLE: The Letter
By Marilyn Schnepp


Reading the neatly printed letter a second time, the young Pastor suddenly felt the weight of the world come crashing down on him. "Lord, are you sure this is my calling? I haven't felt this stupid, clueless or stymied since the day my son knocked me for a loop with his questions regarding Your marital status."

Pastor Gould placed the letter on his desk, got up and strolled over to the window, then with both thumbs tucked inside his belt he stared out into God's winter wonderland.

Evergreen trees stood silently against a background of bright blue sky. An eagle soared loftily through puffy white clouds that matched the glistening white snow blanketing the top of a distant mountain. What awesome beauty, Lord! And to think I've been told all my life, first by my mother then again by my wife to - "Go change your tie Harley, blue and green doesn't blend, mix or match!" But Lord, Your exquisite display of blues and greens in nature makes me wonder...What kind of fools are we - lowly Man, thinking we know more about color schemes than the Creator of the Universe."

Sighing audibly, Pastor Gould finally turned away from the window and returned to the duties at hand...the letter.

"Dear Pastor Gould,

"Please help me to understand something that has been bothering me night and day for years.

"The Bible states 'the Lord God omnipotent reigneth'. "Omnipotent is defined in the Dictionary as 'the Almighty God or Deity having infinite power and unlimited authority'; thus, with all His repertoire of worlds and planets in a vast universe to choose from, WHY on Earth would God send Lucifer a/k/a Satan down to THIS planet where Man was just taking his very first baby steps into this thing called Life?

"Planets Saturn, Jupiter or Pluto for instance, had no life...so why didn't God send him there or elsewhere, where he could not corrupt, harm or tempt God's newest and most beloved creation called Man?

"The Bible also states that "Man was made just a little lower than the Angels"; and since a third of the angels believed Satan's lies and fell to Earth with him; how in Heaven's name could God expect lowly, dust-made Man to resist the devil's lies when even Angels could not do so?

"It just doesn't make sense to me, Pastor. I know it is wrong to question God - but I desperately need answers. I want so much to go to heaven and see Jesus, and thank Him for giving His life for me, and to live with Him forever and ever - where there is no more war, no more crying, sickness, death, sorrow or pain.

"Please help me to understand the "Why?" - so that my mind can be at rest.

"Thank you, Pastor Gould; I await your answer."

The letter was signed by one of his faithful flock.

Taking pen in hand and a heartfelt prayer for wisdom, the young pastor took out a piece of Church stationary and wrote "December 25, 2006" at the top of the page.

"Dear Sister in Christ,

"Please take note of the date on this letter. This may very well be the reason God picked planet Earth as the dumping ground for the devil. If we hadn't had the misfortune of housing that old troublemaker for all these years - we might not be celebrating Jesus' birthday today.

"We would never have known a Christmas. No joyous songs, no stories of Bethlemen, Babe in the manger, shepherds, the three Wise Men and the Bright Star that led them to Jesus' birth place. We might never have known Jesus or loved Him as our Savior, the One who came down to Earth to be One of us and One with us; and then love us so much that He died in our stead, to save us from our sins

"Look what we would be missing if Nevaeh, Retsea or some other planet somewhere in the far reaches of God's Universe were celebrating Jesus' Birthday instead of us?

"Today we are happily and joyfully celebrating our Savior's birth here on our very own turf; the Only planet in God's vast Universe that rightfully holds the honor to celebrate His birth.

"I wish you Joy and Love this Holiday Season, and that your mind will find peace at last, as you join all of earth's Christians in singing "Joy To THIS World" on this 25th Day of December.

"With God's blessings,"

Harley Gould

References: All KJV
Rev 19:6
Ps 8:5, Heb 2:7
Rev 12:9, Isa 14:12

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This article has been read 966 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Edy T Johnson 12/07/06
I love this! From the entire concept, the letter, the setting, the question, and especially THE ANSWER. Your reader gets a message without even realizing it, the perfect devotional in my mind. (I'd send this out as my Christmas letter, if I had written it :)
Jan Ackerson 12/08/06
I love this! I wish something like this would become as widely-read as that insipid "Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus" letter has been. Your own questioning letter and thoughtful answer are so much more meaningful! Superb!
william price12/10/06
Oh so creative and well commincated. I'm impressed. I also really liked your opening. I was connected to your pastor from the get go. very effective. Super characterization that carried your message expertly. God bless.
Lynda Schultz 12/11/06
I would never have thought to answer the dear sister this way very insightful! Well done.
Cheri Hardaway 12/11/06
Honest question. Holy Spirit-inspired answer. Very creative and unique. Good job! Blessings, Cheri
Catrina Bradley 12/12/06
Good message in the question and the answer! Also loved the MC's son's question. :) Well done.
Marty Wellington 12/12/06
This is awesome. Wonderful structure and content that is truly inspiring. Terrific job on all counts.
terri tiffany12/12/06
This is wonderful:) SO well written - such beautiful language and the delivery to the question was so perfect. A very enjoyable read! I hope you do well!!
Joanne Sher 12/13/06
So insightful and beautifully written! Great description throughout!
Sara Harricharan 12/14/06
I was baptized by a Pastor Harley. I loved this piece, especially the thought about the matching ties and color schemes! Beautifully written and with a nice touch of humor. Good job.
(Thanks for commenting on An Amber-Eyed Adventure!)
Paul Potenza12/27/06

For some reason, my heart wants to be close to yours tonight. This is the second night in a row I have read your piece. I didn't answer it yesterday because I wanted time to think.

I LIKE what you said about blues and greens mixing. I'm no "fashion plate" so I often dress to my bride's great displeasure. Trust me when I tell you that I would be just FINE walking out the front door natily attired in a motorcycle helmet with a propeller on top, a tutu, and a pair of swim fins. (For FORMAL occasions I would also put on pants!) (I'm not a TOTAL farmer!)

But what got to me most was the letter that the woman wrote. The line "I know that it's wrong to question God" struck me right between the eyes because today in my bible study I got an answer to that. We can't be God's friend if we DON'T question Him. Could we be friends with ANYBODY if we didn't get close enough to question them? To hear their thoughts and give ours in return?

There is a lot more that I want to say about your story, like the beautiful way you described Satan's presence on earth as a vehicle for our joy, but I'll leave that to another time and place.

Thank You for your efforts. They are NOT wasted.

Your old USMC Buddy