Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Chillax (04/03/14)
TITLE: Dicing With Death
By Graham Insley
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"Calm down and relax," Sammy shouted above the roaring wind in the open top car. "Enjoy the ride." The laughter in Sammy's voice made it obvious that for him this was pure fun. Johnny did not agree.
As they hit another steep downhill slope, the young lad's body was again aggressively thrust against the seat restraint. An involuntary scream was pulled away by the wind to join the cacophony of racing sounds that surrounded them.
<i>Think of God, think of anything else but this.</i> Johnny tried to focus his mind on something that would take away the fear that was starting to wrap itself around heart and mind. <i>No weapon formed against me will prosper, my life is in His hands and nothing will happen that He has not ordained for my good. All things work together for my good to form me into the likeness of Christ.</i>
The car was slowing slightly as it went up a steep rise and Johnny breathed a sigh of relief; but the relief was short lived. Waiting on the other side of the crest was an even steeper downhill run into a breathtaking chicane. Instead of slowing for the extra curves, the car seemed to pick up speed and slam its way through like a fool rushing in to certain death.
"It's okay, we're safe." The older boy's voice contained no fear. "Just relax."
Johnny tried to remember what his dad had told him the other day about facing his fears and controlling his reactions. "When your emotions take over, you are out of control. Remember Elijah in the cave."
The young lad forced himself to remember the story of the old Prophet. He had walked out to the mouth of the cave to be confronted by the world being torn apart. Great and strong winds were literally breaking rocks into small pieces and flinging them through the air like tissue paper. But God was not found in the midst of all of that danger, chaos and confusion.
And then there had been an earthquake. The violent shaking of the ground that Elijah stood on must have terrified the old man; with crevices forming before his eyes, large rocks crashing down as they were split and thrown from their perch and the animals running and screaming in fear. But again, God was not found in the fear and panic that surrounded the Prophet.
Then there had been a fire -- raging, scorching heat and flames that leaped to consume everything in their path. That must have really frightened Elijah and made him wonder how he would survive the day. And yet, again God was not in the midst of the certain doom and despair that came with the cracking sound of the fire.
But God was in the still small voice that followed all of the emotional turmoil that had assaulted Elijah's senses.
That was when another violent curve shattered Johnny's thoughts and brought him back to the moment. Suddenly the car was airborne and the two boys were upside down, still traveling at break neck speed, and Johnny knew that death was only moments away.
<i>Be still and know that I am God.</i> Johnny repeated the words from Scripture several times to calm his racing heart and relax his tense mind.
Miraculously the car flipped again and they were suddenly the right way up and thrust back into a plummeting, downhill race.
"Yes, Lord!" Johnny's lungs screamed out the praise his heart was now filled with. "Thank You, Father." The young lad felt the calm flood his mind and he now knew, beyond all doubt, that he was safe and God was in control. <i>Now I can relax from my fears and enjoy this.</i>
That was when the roller-coaster ride came to an end; the air brakes came on and the car pulled to a stop at the customer platform.
"See, doubting Thomas, I told you that it was safe."
Johnny looked into his big brothers eyes and smiled. "Can we go again? Please?"
References: Isa 54:17, Romans 8:28, 1 Kings 19:9-12, Psalms 46:10.
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