Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Sad (07/26/07)
TITLE: Happy spender, sad giver
By Folakemi Emem-Akpan
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The car gleams in the rare afternoon sunshine, screaming without words to all those that care to stare that it is brand new. Jonathan, the proud and happy owner stands beside his latest acquisition and breathes in a heavenly smell of new leather. He is sure the passers-by are wondering how someone so young like him could own such a terrific car, one whose purchase figure was approaching seven figures. Smirking, he tells himself that they needn’t know his credit card is maxxed out. Who cares about debt, as long as one has the kind of fancy car ones friends drive?
Strapping himself in, he can almost swear that his is even better than theirs.
It’s a black jacket, not really leather and not really wool. But the sales assistant had assured him that it is as durable as the first and as soft as the latter. As Jonathan, the proud and happy wearer punches one of his arms through the jacket, he concurs with her observation. Well, this even looks better than that slinky thing Dave had on at the part last week, the one he boasted his fiancée got him when she went to South Africa.
He can’t help but catch admiring glances as he strides to the swivelling door, his new purchase on his back. Who says money can’t buy happiness?
As he looks the slim book over, he concludes the bookshop attendant is nothing but a thief. Just a few sheaves of paper rambling on about male friendship, and at that steep price? Or wait a minute…Ben hadn’t complained about the price. He’d only said it was a book to have.
Jonathan, the proud and now happy book owner carries his book to the newly made bookshelf and places it at such an angle that even a blind man would see it upon first entering the room. He’s not really sure he’d read the book, but he sure wouldn’t feel left out when the guys are boasting about their copies that they left back at home.
Who cays money can’t buy friendship?
It’s really nothing more than a plastic tray but tonight it functions as an offering basket. It’s moving towards him now, passed from hand to hand. Soon, it will be his turn to dip into his pocket and give something.
Jonathan, the sad giver wonders what on earth he’s doing in a church. These righteous people make him feel unclean, and by the way why are pastors so unashamed about asking people to give offering these days? Why couldn’t it be like the old days when you gavee as you were led.
The tray is passed to him, and for a moment his hands shake violently. Then, he fumbles around in his pocket and emerges with the single bill he would have spent on a stick of candy. Here you go God, he thinks grumpily, as he drops the rumpled money on the plastic tray.
“He is happy when spending on frivolities,” the angel observes, scratching his chin with the tip of his right wing. “But when he has to give to God or people that really need it, well you’ve just seen him.”
The other angel nods in agreement. “So I guess it’s poetic justice that God won’t send him that miracle he so badly needs. For a minute there, I just thought Adonai would capitulate and give us that number about mercy.”
“Just shows that God is really wiser than the rest of us put together.”
Every man as he purposes in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly or of necessity: for God loves a cheerful giver. 2 Corinthians 9:7
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