Image- Man in a Pew

Image may contain: people sitting, night, table and indoor

Sitting there alone, the old man felt too proud to approach the alter any closer than he already had. He was happy he’d made it this far. He didn’t know how it worked. He sat and waited. Nope, no one, yet. Let’s see what we have here. A couple of books, some paper and a nub of a pencil that needs sharpening, if not replacement. A hymnal full of songs he didn’t remember hearing ever, but who really knows the words. A book, not a bible, but a book of scriptures and directions. Sit, stand, sit. What? It reads like a script to some play from his distant past. This sounds like a lot of work. He decides to look around, maybe just a little closer. He starts by moving to the opposite end of the pew. Standing up, he stares at a massive wall of glass and metal. Colors darkened, with only a hint of light of the crescent moon outside. Lager than life depictions of angels slaying serpents, carrying men from one place to another, holding back winds and rains. Okay, so lets move down a few rows. A little basket lined in velvet is set in the opposite corner. Back down and through the row. A little tight for him, he takes his time and the picks up the white basket. Looking inside, he sees a little piece of paper. “IOU.” Hmm? Well, okay, somebody owes somebody something. He sets the basket down and moves out to between the rows of pews. Down a little more. To the right is a board with some numbers. Attendance. Members 356, Sunday School 185, Last Sunday 266. Where is everyone, he thought? This is the place the invitation said to be a half hour ago and he’d been here at least 25 minutes. Just a little longer. Still moving forward and looking around he notices the closets. Four in a row. He got closer, but didn’t hear anyone. Opens the door, nothing but a cushioned seat and chicken wire window to the connecting closet. It can’t be for punishment. Surely, it’s out here and the two are connected. He closed the door moved away quickly being sure not to trip. Further down he could see the alter was covered in candles. A few were lit and flickered about. Somebody must be here. He picks one up and lights it, what could it hurt? The faint smell in the air as he gets closer to the podium, starts to bring him a memory long lost. At first, hard to discern, it hits him hard, he sits down on the stage and looks around. Taking a deep breath, he begins to pray, something he hadn’t done in a long time. He felt he had no need. He was a successful retired businessman. Had a happy and healthy family that loved and cared for each other. Friends and acquaintances that he could always count on. No financial worries or health scares. So, why was he here? There once was a young man who made a promise. A promise to turn to God as soon as he “made it.” “Please, God. I know I have nothing now, but, please. Please let me owe you this one time. You see, I have nothing but a few dollars to live on. If I give them to the church, I have nothing. I trust you, but I’m still scared. So, please God, just this once?” He forgot his request as soon as he exited the door. His money multiplied as did his properties, family and friends. He wanted for nothing. He was happy and healthy. Happy and healthy when the crane fell off the building. Bringing down steel bars and equipment. As he drove past his competitions new development, upset because he’d missed out on the opportunity. As the steel bars and weighted buckets and chains tore through the roof of his blue custom Bentley. He’d forgotten. That young man also demanded God prove Himself, before he would commit to the God “he couldn’t see.” He weeped. How could he forget? He looked and there was a book that had fallen from the podium as he had bumped it during this revelation. He looked at it, worn leather binding with gold tipped edges. He read the note on the inside, which read “This is the book of second chances. I give and I take as I please. Life or treasure, it all belongs to me. This book is mine to give or to keep. Promises broken break my heart. I’m not too happy with challenges either. As you read this book I want you to consider, why I chose you. Why I had you come here to pick it up. Why you must go on. I won’t tell you, nor will I hint. The world’s not going to be any easier. In fact, it’s going to be more difficult than ever. You have to make your own choices and fight the fight you hadn’t fought before. It’s not a movie or story in a book of books. This is reality. You will lose and gain, rise and fall. This time it’s on you. If you want me, really want me, I’ll be here. I just won’t be as evident and then you will know the difference. And maybe, you will hold up your part of the bargain.” The old man weeped. He cried out “But, God, I am too old. I don’t know how much more I can take.” The note fell and he was able to read the back. “Your first test.” The man got up, wiping away his tears he reached back for the book and it was gone. He was on his own to remember his promises to the Father of all mankind. But, he remembered, God keeps His promises and they were easy to find. He slowly walked down the aisle to the back door. He didn’t turn around, it didn’t feel right to his spirit. He walked out and down the great steps. As he looked across the street to cross it, he saw a banner he couldn’t read with a vivid rainbow across it. “It’s not over yet,” he thinks as he crosses over to his car. “Dad! Dad!” Sirens blaring. “You’re alive, we’re taking you to the hospital. Dad, you’re alive!” #everydayinspiration

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