Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: The Family Home (05/29/08)
- TITLE: The Seven Rooms of Revelation
By David Johnston
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The door slammed securely shut behind me and I was alone with this strange, smiling man in a long, long hallway. Doors – seven in all – opened to each side, and from somewhere above, on a higher level, another storey, came the sound of heavenly singing. “Stairs are just down the corridor there,” said my new friend, indicating with a piercing finger, “but let’s have a look around first.” The first door he moved towards was intricately designed: its sunken panel a harbour, sirens perching on the sea wall of the supporting hinges. As the door opened my eyes alighted on a beautiful desk in the corner: solid, sturdy, immovable, surely created from a sister of that old tree of life pushing against the window. Covering the desk were books, brand new, unread, relating to different faiths, new philosophies. With a sweep of his hand, my guide swept away the new. “Beautiful, isn’t it?” he marvelled with me as we stared at the old before returning to the hallway and to the door opposite.
With a loud clanging noise the shutter of the second door slid to one side. I peered in, seeing a lone lamp battling a barred window which resolutely refused to allow in any light. The room drenched in darkness was hardly decorated, such a contrast to the third room we moved to. Here, bread lay on an ornate table before a throne of fire, a furnace into which my morning star reached, emerging with a white stone, which he slipped into his pocket, leading me back into the hallway with a smile. “Saved that one,” he whispered as we strode along the corridor.
“Still some work to do here.” He opened the fourth door where a garage housed an old, reliable car which was obviously used to transport beautiful materials, cottons and silks, from market to market. One headlight winked its progress at me; the other resolutely dark, its glass in pieces on the bed of the floor. A step, a door, a room filled with beautiful plastic plants now blossomed before me. My eyes darted around, searching for the source of the sounds of the chattering squirrels, bluebirds, for the signs of life which would seal the forest scene with authenticity but all I saw was a lone slug, moving over the half-hidden speaker looking for something that might bring it life.
The sixth room along the corridor was dominated by a phantasmal pillar bearing the names of God and Christ, towering high, peacefully penetrating the ceiling as the sound of angels could be heard drifting down. Around the pillar were garlands, wreaths of real life, gently fluttering as a wind blew through the open balcony carrying a soft breeze with the hint of a storm to come. The draught chilled our backs even as we entered the final room where the illusion of wealth burned as brightly as the fire failing to melt the icicles. White clothes lay discarded by an undisturbed bath, its blank face mirroring the costume jewellery hanging from the walls.
These costume words melting behind us, we continued along the corridor, leaving the seven doors, the seven rooms, the seven lights behind. Up the stairs we victoriously marched. Conquering each step, I could feel my soul float higher and higher, rising into the heights of the house. For a moment it seemed as though an eagle were lifting me above the roof, the chimney, above our family home. Looking down on a sturdy building, I could see the wind and rain buffeting it from all sides as the promised storm came. An ocean of waves surrounded it, pounding against its walls, the seven rooms seeming to quake and shake yet still the house stood, still it stood. Despite the faults and scars, despite the stormy scares, built upon a solid rock, our family home could not be destroyed. I could see the Rock it was built upon; I could see its solid foundation; and the Rock was Christ.
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