Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Gifts (of the Spirit or service) (11/22/07)
TITLE: Counted Among the Saints
By Ruth Neilson
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She was supposed to be the example of girls everywhere; a straight ‘A’ student who managed to keep a football star boyfriend who had all the answers to turn away the religious fanatics’ pleas to accept whatever deity. Yet, she was one of ‘them.’
The dark bags under her eyes had to be carefully covered with concealer and foundation. Celeste couldn’t tell her parents about her dreams. Not with them becoming true.
Her only confidant, her diary, knew her dreams. With a flick of her wrist, Celeste turned on her lamp and pushed herself up. She kept careful record of her dreams and the dates that they came true.
She closed her eyes, pulled out her pen, and began to carefully write out her dream.
I was walking past a sea of men, worn and battered. Years of troubles etched into their faces—and I stopped and asked one, ‘What happened?’
With aching joints and fingerless hands, they pointed to a statue that loomed in the distance. The man’s mouth opened to answer, but a sound of a silencer-equipped gun cut through the air. I spun around, looking for who would shoot an innocent man. However, there was no one around.
I started to run towards the figure only to fall to my knees. It was my father! I could see myself standing in the front of the line…
Celeste paused in her writing and chewed on her lip for a long moment. Her knowledge of the scriptures told her that dreams were warnings. What was it that needed to change in this balance to prevent this from happening?
She had kept her faith hidden for a few months now. The strain was beginning to break her—this was her time. She kicked off the thick winter blankets, sank onto the hardwood floors, and began to pray.
She needed guidance and strength.
“God, I want to be counted among Your prophets of old...” She whispered, pulling her night clothes tighter around her body to ward off the chill.
Celeste paused for a long moment and listened for the familiar voice that she had grown use to hearing. “Are you sure about that, my child?”
She hesitated for long moment before whispering, “Yes, Lord.” The familiar voice didn’t respond, and Celeste could feel her weariness tugging at her mind and body.
She crawled back into bed, pulled her blankets back around her body, and allowed herself to drift to sleep.
She was standing at the front of the line, staring at her father. His dark eyes gazed at her angrily and Celeste stood her ground.
“I want to be remembered among the prophets of old!”
Hard hands gripped Celeste’s arms and violently shook her awake.
“Celeste, are you okay? Celeste, wake up, hun.” Her father was trying. She opened an eye and frowned. His face was a mask of fear and another emotion she couldn’t identify.
“Daddy...I’m fine...” She muttered and he breathed a sigh of relief and sat down on the bed next to her.
“You were saying something about being remembered among the ‘prophets of old.’ What were you talking about?” He asked, and Celeste swallowed once.
It was time...
“Daddy, there’s something I need to tell you...” Celeste quietly began.
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