Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: RAIN (04/18/19)
- TITLE: Shattered Dream.
By Karen Vlantis
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Abigail’s heart palpitated as she reread the WhatsApp message from Tom. She was dumbfounded by her husband’s bad news. Dazed, she stared out of the window and watched the torrential downpour. Like popcorn, the rain smacked the sealed earth and bounced back up. Droplets shattered into shards and joined the sheet of water that skimmed over hardened ground. Rainwater flooded into the gutter and disappeared as it was swallowed up by the storm drain.
Anger, caused by the unfairness of the situation, threatened to engulf her. She squeezed her eyes and took a deep breath. To calm herself, she picked up her book of ‘Daily Devotionals’ and turned to the current day’s entry. She read the words on the page but nothing penetrated. Distracted and indignant, she flung the book onto the floor.
She sank back onto the pillows on her bed. Tears overflowed and trickled down her cheeks. She bolted upright, clenched her fists and shouted, “Why? Why would God give, and then take away? I’m tired of playing at this game of life… it’s just too hard.” She slumped into self-pity and submitted to sobs as they wracked her body.
Ebony, sensitive to Abigail’s mood, clambered over her. He purred as he pushed his nose against her wet cheek.
She stroked his silky black fur, “You know Ebony… it would have been better if Tom hadn’t been offered that job in the first place. There I was, dreaming again about how life would change with that extra money… dancing around, thanking the Lord… and then, wham! The carpet got ripped from under our feet.”
She shook her head as she recalled the shock of Tom’s news. She hunched over the cat, nuzzled him with her forehead, and whispered, “Ebony… they withdrew the job offer… who does that?”
Soothed by Abigail’s voice, Ebony nestled into her lap and pummeled his paws on her leg. Preoccupied, she was unaware of pinpricks as his claws punctured her skin; greater was the pain in her heart. Why didn’t God stop the job offer BEFORE Tom resigned? Now he’s back to being unemployed… and in this economy that’s a scary thing.
Thoughts of unbelief pelted her mind. I know God works everything for the good of those who love Him… BUT Does He really care? I know God is sovereign and created everything… BUT Is He really personal? Now look at the predicament we are in... Particularly at Tom’s age.
Abigail blocked the kneading of Ebony’s claws with her hand. Her thoughts continued to shred her heart. The Bible says the Holy Spirit will comfort us… but I don’t feel any comfort. Maybe this is all hocus-pocus.
Ebony wriggled onto his back and stretched a paw up to her face. Abigail gently held his outstretched leg and kissed the pads on his paw. A tinge of guilt crossed her mind; she knew the truth of God wasn’t hocus-pocus.
Spent from crying, she drew a deep breath, and slowly exhaled. She retrieved the book she had hurled onto the floor; it flopped open on a well-worn page. Her eyes scanned the verse; it pulsed with life. She read it out loud, “Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew, like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.“
Despite feeling raw, she knew that God was good. Her life over the past few years had been showered with trials – one storm after the next. It was during times of rising water that she had dug deep and gained wisdom.
She contemplated her cat as he lazed with slit eyes, “I know Satan tries to destroy us and at times life is hard, but God takes all those nasties and miraculously turns them around and works everything for our good.”
Abigail glanced out of the window; the violent downpour had eased into gentle rain. The rain drops tinkered across the rigid surface like fingers playing a melody on piano keys. The constant patter softened the hard ground; the life-giving water settled and slowly seeped into the parched soil.
Abigail settled back onto the pillow and Ebony closed his eyes. She read the remainder of the verse, “I will proclaim the name of the Lord. Oh, praise the greatness of our God! He is the Rock, His works are perfect, and all His ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is He.“
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