Flashbulbs garishly lit up the dark night illuminating the sidewalk in front of me with a light brighter than the sun. The horde of reporters clamored for attention, their shouting creating a frightening din. ‘Ms. Phillips. Michelle. Could we get a statement?’
Their shouts made me want to duck my head and cover my ears, but a big time author wouldn’t dare be caught cowering. Squaring my shoulders and flashing a big smile I waved at the news hungry crowd and gripped my publicist’s elbow for support.
Settling into the back of the sleek, black sedan waiting at the curb, I let out my breath and collapsed against the soft leather seat. I still couldn’t believe it. I was officially a New York Times best selling author! All those years of dreaming and scribbling, hunched over a typewriter had paid off. Not only was my new book, ‘A Way of Life’, a best seller but it was also said to be the most controversial book of the year.
Watching the reporters from the safe confines of the car I felt a small shiver pass down my spine. They were a fever driven horde that would stop at nothing to get a story. They frightened me more then I wanted to admit.
A fist materialized out of the dark and pounded on the window, ‘Ms. Phillips, just a word.’ A face replaced the hand hovering outside the tinted window, camera held at the ready.
I swallowed my heart back down into my chest and placed a shaking hand on the door to make sure the lock was still in place. My publicist, Aaron Brooder, gave the signal for the driver to go and lifted an inquiring brow at me.
Sending him a small smile I let out the breath I had been holding and limply sank back. This was not at all what I had pictured when I used to dream of making it big. I had no idea that a book on the decline of Christianity in the modern world would have even caught anybody’s attention, let alone the entire worlds.
It had seemed that in a blink of an eye my life had changed overnight. I had gone from unknown, unpublished writer to one of the most talked about authors of the year. The last couple of months had been a whirl wind of TV, radio and newspaper interviews. Everyone had an opinion about my book, and the majority of them were not positive. They all wanted to know why it was I felt so strongly about an entity that allowed such bad things to happen in the world. Who out there, including me, could give proof of such a being even existing? I had spent months being grilled and left feeling inadequate for my faith.
A squealing of tires interrupted my thoughts as my seatbelt jerked me tight against the seat. My eyes frantically searched for the source of the problem, my hand latching onto Aaron’s arm in a vise grip. Muffled words could be heard from the driver as he fought to control the sedan as it slid across the road. My nerves screamed and I saw the flashing bulbs whiz by as the car spun in an arc.
My last thought before I felt the car slide over the cliff was that this was not worth it. Fame had a price and I certainly hadn’t been ready to pay it. Metal crunched and my head flew back against the window with a sharp crack as blackness welcomed me.
My eyes flew open and I threw off the sheets damp with sweat. Sitting up in bed I held my shaking hand over my chest, my breath coming in short, swallow gasps. Frantically I patted myself all over, then the bed. It had been so real every sound so crisp and clear, I almost couldn’t believe it was a dream.
The realization had me instantly calming and I sent up a thankful prayer over the loud thumping of my heart. ‘Thank you Father, thank you. I willingly accept my safe, quiet little life without complaint. I want to bring glory to Your name, but in Your way Lord, not mine.’
Settling back among the pillows, I reached over to switch on the light and picked up my Bible. Knowing sleep had been chased far away I settled in for some quiet time with the One who had already mapped the blueprint for my life.
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