Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Irritated (11/08/12)
TITLE: Three Questions
By Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom
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The moderator glanced around at the conglomeration that had assembled before him. He saw people dripping in diamonds sitting next to others who were dressed in rags. “Everyone here has one thing in common. You have all prayed for an opportunity to ask Jesus some questions. You have chosen three delegates to represent you: a man, a woman, and a child. Those three will have an opportunity to ask Jesus one question each."
The lights dimmed and from the left of the stage a brilliant purple glow bounced off the walls as Jesus stepped onto the platform. The crowd gasped and shielded their eyes. A buzz rippled through the room as the people whispered about the phenomenon. Grown men starting pushing women to get a closer look. Soon angry retorts were flying about.
Banging his gavel, the moderator calmed the crowd. He turned to Jesus; goose-bumps popped out on his arm. “Thank you for coming, My Lord. On behalf of people everywhere, I’m honored to be in your presence and humbled by your willingness to answer these three questions.”
Stepping forward, Jesus warmed the room with his smile. “So many people have stated when they get to Heaven they’ll have a list of questions.” He held up his hand. “I know how impatient humans can be; so I've gathered you together and will answer one question from each delegate.”
Jesus tipped his head. “George, I believe you have the first question. Fire away.”
George rose and stroked his beard. “Thank you, Jesus. When will the Rapture begin?” The crowd murmured its approval and people leaned in, eager to hear Jesus’ answer.
Nodding his head, a small smile spread over Jesus’ lips. “That’s a wonderful question.”
George beamed, puffed out his chest, and tilted his head to hear the rest of Jesus’ response.
"However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” (Matthew 24:36 New Living Translation)
As his smile drooped, George hung his head. A man in the second row jumped to his feet and waved his fist in the air. “What kind of an answer is that? We want the date so we can be prepared.”
The crowd nodded their heads and mumbled in accession while the moderator banged his gavel. “Quiet down. Jesus answered the question. There’s to be no more complaining. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Now Marilyn, I believe you have the next question.”
Dressed in a flowing white gown, the woman stood, and tapped the microphone. “Thank you, Your Honor, Jesus. My question is one all mothers yearn to hear answered. How can we be guaranteed our children will enter Heaven?”
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6 NIV)
Shouts of protest rippled through the crowd. “No fair. We could find that answer in the Bible!”
Jesus lifted his arms and looked down at the crowd. “I believe you have one question left.” His eyes locked on the little girl who was waiting her turn. Jesus held out his hand and helped her up the steps. “Gracie, what is your question?”
Licking her lips, Gracie shifted from foot to foot. “Will there be a need for bathrooms when we get to Heaven?”
Once the crowd had processed her question, they jumped to their feet. People were pounding their fists into their open palms. “We demand a new delegate!"
Jesus held his index finger against his lips; soon the room quieted. “If you want me to answer, raise your hand.” No one moved, except Gracie who slowly raised her arm. Jesus faced the crowd. "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3 NIV)
Jesus bent over, cupped his hand and whispered into Gracie's ear. Slowly a grin crept over her face. She flung herself into the arms of Jesus. “Thanks, I've always wondered if there would be potties in Heaven.”
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