Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: CROWD (07/06/17)
TITLE: Friendship Memories
By Katy Foster
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I feel I can easily relate to anyone who has come too close to a beehive, or has traveled too far into the desert, or has dived too deep under the sea. There’s a moment in these situations where safety and livelihood are redefined as remnants of the past. I felt this same feeling as I stood in the middle of three-thousand blood-thirsty men, with my friend David.
The incident began early one evening. David arrived back at our hideout to tell us that he found King Saul. “But he didn’t find me,” David exhumed.
“David, King Saul has three-thousand men with him. Three-thousand!” Ahimelech bluntly informed David, “It’s by the grace of God that one of them did not see you.”
“God is good, David,” I sided with Ahimelech.
“He is good, Abishai,” David agreed with me in deep thought, “I need to show the King just that. I’m going back out to their camp tonight. Anyone want to go with me?”
For a moment, there was an intentional silence, then a few background chuckles, followed by flying disapprovals: “What?....Three-thousand men!...They want to kill you!...”
“I will go down with you,” I interrupted the flow of chastisements.
I wanted to go. A righteous man would proclaim that the friendship was his reasoning, or that David cannot do this alone, or that he needed protection, or that God’s heart was sought as vigorously as David sought it.
Albeit, I am a righteous seeker of God, and loyal protector of David; but these were not the reasons that drove this desire in me to go. I wanted the adventure, and with David, we would have it.
David looked at me with a half-smile and narrow eyes. He knew my reasoning, and although it did not match his own, he understood.
Once darkness consumed the sky, we headed out. As we walked some distance, David offered some advice.
“Abishai, try not to trip over anything at their camp, alright friend? They’ll all be asleep, so try to be quiet. No sneezing, coughing, stepping on men, or tripping over men.” David amused himself at my expense.
“And, we’re just going to amble on in, expecting not one out of three-thousand to wake up, right? This will be good.”
“Shhh….” David motioned his hand downward for silence and stooped lower as he walked much slower with careful steps. I followed suit. We crouched behind some brush and stretched our necks to see King Saul’s camp through the leaves and branches.
A rush of terror and premature defeat poured through me. Over a large mass of ground, men lay asleep everywhere. The ground was covered with sleeping men further than I could see. Even the trees propped up sleeping men. Every single man slept so peacefully and still, without making a sound. The deep sleep was a comfort, but the mass amount of men inflamed a tremble in my throat.
David turned to look at me with an indifferent expression, then seeing my fear, he gave me a reassuring smile.
“Follow me! Let’s find the King!” David whispered.
This was utterly insane; however, be that as it may, this was fun.
I tried to place my feet exactly where David’s feet stepped to avoid pinning down a head or a finger. As I walked in giant leaps, one foot accidentally thrust hard into another man’s foot. My blood froze, so I froze. I waited for him to awaken or shout or at least snort, but he did nothing.
God’s presence is here! Thank You, LORD! I said in my heart. Then I continued behind David. I looked around me as we continued into the thick of these sleeping men. We were like flies walking into the middle of a spider web where there’s less of a chance to escape, and less of a chance to live. Of course, King Saul was situated right in the middle of three-thousand sleeping men, asleep himself.
God had brought King Saul right into David’s hands. I tried to explain this to David, yet we walked away with only King Saul’s spear and water jug, sparing his life.
Walking away from the death trap of sleeping men was invigorating. We continued quite a distance away from the danger. Then, David stopped, turned around, looked at me, and said, “Let’s wake them up.”
What? I was thinking. Beehives, great deserts, and deep seas, here we come!
Smiling, I answered, “Okay, let’s do it.”
(Based on 1 Samuel 26:1-14.)
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