Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Flowers (10/03/05)
TITLE: Ben's Rose
By Anthony David
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The gentle breeze was swaying the few scraggly plants and bushes in that lonely place. A single Rose plant was shivering in the midst of many other bushes. It was full of thorns: large menacing thorns. But right in the center, swaying slightly above the thorns was huge red rose flower. Its fragrance was being wafted up and caught the attention of Ben.
Ben was entranced by the flower and bent close to inhale the beautiful fragrance it was giving off. He had been walking aimlessly and mindlessly out of the town and had reached this deserted place. He stopped at the rose plant and sighed deeply. “What a fine rose flower. It gives me a hope, a reason to live.” He thought.
Lonely, rejected dejected and depressed, that was how Ben was now. His wife of ten years had walked out on him that morning, carrying his beloved daughters in tow. She rejected him as soon as the HIV test result came positive. Ben’s face contorted in agony, as he thought of all his near and dear ones - neither near nor dear anymore. How fickle is human love? He mused.
“Why should I live anymore? Whoever for? It is wise for me to kill myself now.” Depressing thoughts darkened his mind. It was then that the rose caught his attention. For a while, he was distracted. “How come this rose blooms amidst these wretched conditions? It is amidst many big thorns and weeds. Yet, it faithfully is fragrant.” Ben thought.
“My son, I brought you to this rose for a purpose. See how it survives in the most hostile surroundings. I want you too Ben, my son to smile and be fragrant. Be willing to be my witness even now. I love you and have never given you up.”
“Was it my Heavenly Father who spoke just now?” wondered Ben, “ Oh He has never given me up! I have a hope! Indeed I have a hope in my Eternal God, blessed be His Name.”
Relying solely on God, Ben began to live. His only source of support was his constant communion with God. “My God wants me to be a fragrant rose amidst these trying circumstances.” Mused Ben as he struggled to survive.
Days passed. Alas, the beautiful rose faded, withered and dried up. Ben too began to become weak and sick more and more. But the rose retained its fragrance till the last. Ben continued to commune with God. At last, the flower fell to the ground. Ben died that same evening. The rose was no more but Ben began to live, eternally from then on.
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