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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Hunger (11/08/04)

TITLE: The Runaway
By Kathleen Shelton


At one time, she had lived an abundant and filling life. She was watched over and cared for by her Father and groom. But somewhere along the line, she was enticed and seduced by the world outside. She fled the safety and comfort of Her Fathers home, the restraints of the rules and regulations to join and taste the excitement that beckoned to her. And now, she was like so many others; forgotten, unknown, faceless and nameless as she wandered the streets.

Aimlessly, frantically, she roamed the streets in search of nutrition. At first the hunger appeared as a small pang, and then evolved to a small rumble, and now its fierce pain engulfed her, gripping her entire being in its unwavering, unrelenting clutch. Her being now thoroughly consumed by this raging inferno was slowly dying, its life force gradually ebbing away, bit by bit. Malnutrition was claiming its devastating toll upon her.

She knew she was dying. She could in all reality feel herself die, slowly, agonizing, piece by piece; physically, emotionally, mentally and most excruciating, spiritually. Meticulously, she searched for the nourishment that she so desperately needed. She frantically dug through and prowled in each and every trash can and dumpster that she stumbled upon, but, to no avail. Some held odds and ends, a hodgepodge of the nutrients that she was seeking while others were empty, totally void of the substance she required and needed to live or full of vile poison that infused her system.

From His mansion, beyond the abyss that separated them, her Father watched her, His daughter, His creation. He helplessly watched the needless suffering she was enduring, the unhurried pending death that emaciated and bounded her. So complete and unconditional was His love that He had to allow her the freedom of choice. He was known as the supreme doctor, the utmost healer, and yet, rejected by His ailing child. So great was His pain that the tears He cried flowed over the mountains, filling the oceans and rivers. So wrenching was His sorrow that Heaven itself mourned and the angels themselves grieved for Him. So universal, complete was his sorrow that the clouds themselves thundered, the skies darkened, lightening flashed, the mountains rumbled, and the earth trembled and shook.

Her abandoned and carelessly discarded groom stood beside the Father, His pain and grief as pronounced as the Fathers’. His love for her was still evident, written in the stars themselves. Countless times, He knocked upon her door, hoping, waiting for her to answer, yet, His gentle knock was drowned out and overridden by the clamor and clatter of the world outside. He softly called her name, but she either ignored him or heard not His voice.

Then one night over the din of the world, He heard her whimper, cry for Him and call His name. When He knocked upon her door, she flung it wide open and asked Him to come into the torn and tattered ruins of her home. With His own body, He fed her hunger, quenched her thirst.

“I have nothing to give to you but myself, dirty and soiled. I have committed fornication, adultery against you, but, if You will have me, I’m Yours”, she cried. He cleansed her with His own blood and tears.

“I want to go home to my Father’, she sobbed, “but I have trespassed against Him and have no way to pay for my transgressions.” He gently lifted her up off her knees. Only then did she see the raw and pronounced scars. “I have paid the penalty for your disobedience and wrongdoing” He smiled.

He took her to her Father. “Abba, Daddy!” she uttered.

In His arms, her Father held her, His daughter, His creation. He wiped away and erased the needless suffering she had endured, refuted the unhurried pending death that emaciated and bounded her. So complete and unconditional was His love that He had to rejoice at her choice. He was Yahweh-Rophe, the supreme doctor, the utmost healer, and He healed His ailing child. So great was His joy that the tears He cried flowed over the mountains, filling the oceans and rivers. So exhilarating was His elation that Heaven itself rejoiced and the angels themselves sang for Him. So universal, complete was his love and forgiveness that the clouds themselves drummed, the skies lit up, sun light flashed, the mountains rumbled, and the earth trembled and danced.

Kathleen Ann Shelton

Member Comments
Member Date
Kathy Cartee11/15/04
Beautiful and well written.
In the writing of each writer, a part of their heart can be seen.
I can see in you a gift of abounding love and a care for God's children.
Betty Shattuck11/15/04
Great story of mankind's hungry search for the Father.
Lois Jennison Tribble11/15/04
Good sentiment and portrayal of how we tie our Father's hands when He wants to help us. I'd like to see you edit this, however, thinking in terms of "less is more" to increase the impact of your descriptions.
Lynda Lee Schab 11/15/04
I disagree about the editing. I thought this piece was riveting. Full of human anguish and the powerful love of the Father. Wonderful writing and descriptions - in my opinion, you captured the full essence of forgiveness despite rejection.
Well done!
Blessings, Lynda
Karri Compton11/15/04
We as the church and bride of Christ are often guilty of spiritual adultery. Thanks for reminding us of our true groom. God bless, Karri
Deborah Anderson11/15/04
I've always beleived that God will move Heaven and earth for one of His children. God bless you.
Trish Thompson11/16/04
This is such a powerful article...seeing it from a new perspective - a reminder of how our Father must grieve over our bad choices, and the rejoicing when we turn back to Him.

Riveting is exactly the right word!
Debbie OConnor11/17/04
This is really good. I was almost overwhelmed by the message here. I had to read it twice. I love the pictures of the runaway not finding what she needs, the Father hurting for her, longing to help, and the groom just waiting to rush in and rescue his tattered bride. Lovely.
Melanie Kerr 11/19/04
It reminded me of the message of the book of Hosea. Some of it read almost like poetry.
Pam Williams11/21/04
This reminds me of the same joy expressed in the Prodigal Son. You have done a good job expressing the joy.
Linda Germain 11/21/04
You have painted a picture of truth that is condemning AND confirming. Very nicely done. There are prodigal 'daughters' too! :0)