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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Christmas Tree (10/09/08)

TITLE: Hallowed is the ENBA
By Tim Pickl


In the early 21st century, the World Economy collapsed and adversely affected everyone. Most importantly, countries could no longer sustain the basic needs of human life, especially food. As food became scarce, a Great War engulfed the earth. Over two billion people worldwide died during the war, and the United States of America virtually ceased to exist. Survivors in North America gathered and created cult kingdoms--usually based on a single person—who preached hope and change for a better future.

King Ammabo was one of those preachers. After the Great War, Ammabo befriended and convinced other survivors in the Chicago area to join his cause. He promised them great positions in his new kingdom.

The survivors were entranced by Ammabo’s charming charisma, and they blindly followed him.

As a large-scale dust storm blasted through the Illinois Desert, the Chicago-area survivors huddled in the basement of the remains of a large office building. In an inner chamber, King Ammabo conspired with his Second-in-Command—the Prophet Needib—to strengthen control over his followers.

“King Ammabo, we’re on the verge of a game-changin’ discovery.”

“Oh? I thought you made up all that nonsense about the Great Image--

A messenger approached the King Ammabo and the Prophet Needib with exciting news.

“O most merciful Prophet of the Greater Chicago Kingdom, and—“

“Yeah-yeah-yeah, enough of the pleasantries! What’s up?”

“We have good news from the Illinois Desert Dunes Dig Site! They found the Great Image we’ve been looking for!”

“That’s excellent news, indeed. Let’s go!”

Soon the messenger and Prophet arrived via Jeep at the dig site. The Desert Dunes were north of Chicago near Lake Michigan. The wind wasn’t as strong there, which enabled Ammabo’s workers to continue Needib’s search.

“What’d you find? Show me.”

“It’s in the northeast quadrant, near the leaning water tower—over there.”

The pair trudged through the dirty, sandy soil toward the tower. One of the workers held up a shovel and waved it, pointing down with his other hand, and excitedly yelled, “Here, O great Prophet!”

Dozens of curious workers stopped and talked simultaneously.

The Prophet Needib quickly stumbled his way to the bottom of the hole. The Prophet’s eyes flashed with the realization of the importance of the moment. He held up his hands, and screamed, “Silence!” He looked around into the workers’ disheveled faces, and boldly proclaimed, “This is the Great Image we’ve been searchin’ for! This is the mighty ENBA! Our great god!

He bent down and pulled back the lid of a large box, revealing a 15 foot, silver-white one-piece Christmas tree, complete with an angel on the top and a few sparkling ornaments. He pulled the tree out and stood it up.

The tree scintillated in the sun and its branches bounced in the breeze.

“Hallowed is the ENBA! HALLOWED IS THE ENBA! Even the great water tower bows before him! Kneel before YOUR GOD!

Guards pointed their guns at the workers.

The workers complied; kneeled and chanted, “Hallowed is the ENBA! Hallowed is the ENBA!”

The Prophet ordered the messenger, “Bring ENBA and his resting quarters back to home base.”

A breeze blew the dusty box lid closed. On the ripped, duct-taped lid in large forest green-colored font was stamped, “ENBA”.

They returned to base camp and reported to King Ammabo.

“This is-a good news. I can use this ‘ENBA’ for a great advantage.”


Because of ENBA, Ammabo’s kingdom grew exponentially over the next four years. Once a year, Ammabo’s subjects were forced by Ammabo’s army to gather to kneel before ENBA and pay tribute to him.

After they bowed, the people attached treasures and trinkets to the tree.

The messenger appeared to the king with disturbing news. “An unbeliever was discovered on the edge of our kingdom near the caves.”

“Send the infidel in.”

Needib screamed in her face, “Who are you and WHY ARE YOU HERE?!?”

Speaking loudly so all could hear, she answered, “I am Esther and I bring you all good news! This ENBA you’ve been worshipping is a false god!” She bent down and flipped ENBA’s box over. “ENBA is part of a larger word, TANNENBAUM. It is NOT a god, it’s just a tree!”

“Get her outta here! Imprison her!

It was too late--the seeds of truth Esther planted grew and eventually changed their minds.
She taught fellow prisoners and guards about the image of the one True, Living God--Jesus.

Within a few months, Esther was released, and Ammabo’s kingdom fell.


Colossians 1:15-16 (New Living Translation)

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This article has been read 1088 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Gregory Kane10/20/08
What great fun you have had with the post-apocalyptic genre!
Sheri Gordon10/21/08
I totally got the play on names of your two main characters, and I think you did an excellent job portraying them. Interesting how you worked the Christmas tree into this piece...but the message is quite effective.
Scott Sheets10/21/08
Very relevant piece for the times. I enjoyed your 'fictional' tale of the times.
Carole Robishaw 10/22/08
I didn't get the word play, but I knew there must be one. totally loved the story. Great writing.
LaNaye Perkins10/22/08
Oh this was good! I love the futuristic stage this story was set on. Well done my FaithWriter friend.
Angela M. Baker-Bridge10/22/08
This creative piece covered the past, present, and future all at once! That's not an easy task, but you made it work.
Leah Nichols 10/22/08
This is a very unusual entry, and I much enjoyed it. If one didn't know it's an analogy they might be confused, but how could one miss it? LOL :)
Marlene Austin10/22/08
You are not creative - you are PROPHETIC! This would have been a hoot, if it weren't riddled with so much truth. :D
Karlene Jacobsen10/22/08
I may be reading into this, but those names, if turned around, could resemble a couple other names we are becoming familiar with. I like the analogies, and the fact that truth will prevail.
Great story!
Pamela Kliewer10/22/08
Oooh, I got the word play right away, and wondered how in the world you were going to bring the topic in. Nice job. And it would be funny if there weren't so much truth to it, as has already been said...