Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Pastor (11/30/06)
TITLE: It's Not My Calling
By Jesus Puppy
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As the predawn light first began to grace the sky, Jason woke in a cold sweat, a half-remembered dream still lingering in the back of his mind. Unlike so many in the past years, it was not one of endless running or the doom of Man in the last days, but of a calling he never received in his old life-- the call to save the lost souls of a dying world gone mad.
In the vision he stood in front of a small group of people and proclaimed the blessings of God, as he taught the Lord's will-- that all would find peace in seeking Him. The faces gathered before him began to shine with hope as they heard the gospel message spoken plain from his humbled heart.
He made himself busy about the little camp and forced the distraction of his thoughts back to the day ahead. As he bundled his light possession in a blanket, Jason's memory flashed to his youth. When he would play such games as Cops and Robbers after school, or hearing the distant sound of a fire engine and dream it was him as it raced across town to save the day.
Such childhood dreams still brought a smile, until he realized he was now the wanted man, only for realizing a better dream.
He could remember the look on his parents faces as they sat through church, and how it changed from one of awe to that of grief as his father would turn to him and his brother Phillip and silence their childish laughter. Then years later, to an argument with his sister as she tried to get him to accept Christ.
"You become the family preacher, Jan," he had said, adding a note of sarcasm, "Itís not my calling in life."
"How do you know what you're called to do, Jason, when you won't even listen to the simple truth?"
The light of day grew brighter and Jason looked out across the high plains of Wyoming, waiting for the others to finish an early meal before starting into the hills. Five families, add the young woman and child he brought back from Lincoln City, and the group was nearly too large to hide. Since the government sought to capture any Christians, it was all they could do to reach the safety of the mountains-- finding a way south was their only hope.
Seeing the people getting about in the morning air, Jason remembered a summer mission trip to Africa. He felt his wife had tricked him at the time. He loved Sarah with all his heart, and would do anything to make her happy. Spending a month in the jungle of Africa was a hard stretch of love, but he survived the trip, and he did come to enjoy helping. Now, Sarah was gone with so many other Christians; all he had left was a memory and the desire to set things right at last.
"We had real preachers then," he thought, "and actual doctors to help the sick. Now . . . "
He glanced around the stream side camp and watched the two other guides helping the families get ready. Brave souls volunteering to guard the lives of innocents that sought peace. Slowly gathering packs and bedrolls, they prepared for another long day's hike. It was a hard life, but seeing the children smile made each day worth it.
His eyes scanned the gathered people, some standing, others sitting on their belongings, all waiting for a word to begin. Jason was once more reminded of his dream and the message he was given.
"I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee." *
Slowly he brought the group together, and with raised hands and bowed head, he prayed for them. Then, as in his vision, Jason began to teach of his loving God.
* Psalms 22:22 KJV from.. from Ellis Maxima Bible Library Ver 6.0, Copyright- 1988-2001 by Ellis enterprises, Inc.
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