Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Charade (08/14/08)
- TITLE: Was It All Just A Farce?
By Helen Dowd
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He was back in his childhood. Known by everyone as The Twin, he was walking up and down the beach with his dad--and his twin. Everyone noticed Tobias. He was a clown. But he, The Twin, was too serious. He would walk beside his father, the best boat builder around, inspecting boats in the harbour: "Measure it twice to get it right. Test it."… He wasn't jealous of Toby. He loved him. He was the only one who could make him laugh. Oh how he needed Toby now, to make him laugh.
"How could it have turned out so wrong? Three years following someone whom I loved, for nothing? Was Judas so wrong? Was our mutual Friend a fake? Oh, Yahweh, answer me!"… Was it all a waste of time, tagging after some Guru, watching the healing, putting up with the crowds, hoping for something wonderful to happen? … Well, it didn't! It all ended in tragedy.
Who's banging on the door? "Go away! I don't want to see anyone." For days he'd wept, his dream gone up in smoke—or more rightly, ending in a borrowed tomb.
More banging. "Go away!" He knew who it was. They'd come before…His father's voice pounded in his head: "Measure it twice to get it right. Test it and test it again."
“Thomas! Thomas! We've some wonderful news. You should've been there last night. He is risen!”
"Leave me alone." Thomas rose slowly. “I've heard what the women say, but woman are always imagining things.”
“No! No!” cried his friends. “He really is alive! We've seen Him. Last night. In the upper room. He appeared. He ate with us. Truly, He's alive!” They go on: “Not only from Mary Magdalene and the other women, but Peter—well, you know impulsive Peter. Then John, with the same report. After that, two friends, saying they'd talked with Him--and He'd eaten with them. Then, through locked doors, He appears in the room. ‘Peace!’ is all He said. And He ate, right there before our eyes. And we saw His scars. Thomas, He IS ALIVE!”
Thomas buries his head in his hands. "You have to see it to believe it! You have to see it to believe it" –his dad's words would not leave his head…
"Unless I see for myself, and put my finger into those scars, I will not believe.”
His friends leave. Thomas' despair deepens. “Oh if only it were true! 'You have to see it to believe it!'”
Thomas--glum, sad, and silent--waits with his friends in the upper room. Nothing. He knew it couldn't be true! He saw the body, lacerated, mutilated and nailed to a cross and taken and laid in the tomb. No. His friends are mistaken. He's not alive. If He was, why hadn't He shown up? Downcast, Thomas leaves.
Night after night, Thomas returns, expecting. But—NOTHING! He sinks deeper into depression. “I knew it wasn’t true! I'm not coming again. It's all been just a charade.”
“Perhaps tomorrow," his friends urge. It's a week tomorrow we saw Him. “
Sunday arrives. The disciples gather in the upper room, their faces bright with anticipation. Thomas sits with his head down, glum and despondent.
Suddenly, Thomas' head bolts up. There He was!--the same Jesus he had known; yet He is different: the drawn, white, pain-filled face Thomas had seen at the crucifixion, is now glorious—bright as the sun. He looks away.
“Ah, Thomas, My beloved Thomas. Touch me. Put your fingers into the nail prints in My hands. Touch my feet. Thrust your hand into the scar on my side. Believe, Thomas. Oh, believe.”
"You have to see it to believe it." How he lamented those words now. It is REAL! It wasn't a CHARADE, after all.
“My Lord, and My God!” Thomas throws himself at His Master's feet, his face awash with tears. He would serve His living Lord for the remainder of his life. Yes. He would even die for Him.
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