Tonight at youth group, my dad began teaching on a topic that is going to take us a few weeks to cover--a subject that is of vital importance... really, of the utmost importance.
Jesus Christ, dying on the cross, for the sins of the world.
Sermons cover everything, from divorce to creation to the end times, but the singular most important aspect of Christianity, and the aspect that all sermons should point to, is Jesus, and the sacrifice he made.
I like writing. It's something I'm good at and passionate about. As I listened to my dad teach on what happened in Gethsemane and the events leading up to Jesus' crucifixion, I began to get an idea. What if I wrote a historical short story that detailed the events before, during, and after the death of Jesus? This was something I really wanted to do--something I could praise God with.
I had a similar idea near Christmas, to write a short scene from the viewpoint of John the Baptist, as he set off to begin the ministry God had called him to. It was brief, but interesting--at least, it was to me as I wrote it. I had always been thinking about doing something like this--a novel or the like of historical narrative that brought the Bible to life in a story form. There are amazing events in the Bible, but unfortunately, it only gives us a "telling" of the story, not a "showing". Hopefully, in the next few months, I can "show" an interpretation of the Bible's narrative. And hopefully you like it.
For right now, I'm going to leave you with the short scene I wrote for Christmas, to give you a feel for what I'd like to do--thanks!
He Is Coming
John stood there, overlooking the town of Bethlehem.
He knew what had happened there, almost thirty years ago now, though he had been little more than an infant when it had occurred. He had heard the stories, though--from his mother and father--about his cousin Mary and her husband, Joseph. He had heard of the night when Mary's baby had been born, and the newlywed mother had laid her offspring in a manger, swaddled in cloth. He had listened to the story of the shepherds, who had been told by an angel of the Lord of the infant's birth in Bethlehem.
And now, finally, John came to the place where God had been born among men.
He had been meaning to come to see the place for some time, but it had only been now, on his way to the Jordan River, when he'd finally gotten around to it. It was an unassuming town, though it had been the home of King David about a thousand years ago. John stared across the land, trying to imagine in his mind the star that had appeared over the city, guiding the magi to the place where the child lived.
What a sight that would have been, John thought, squinting as the desert sun glared down at him from the sky.
John--who would come to be known as John the Baptist--sighed, and started off again towards the Jordan, his spirit aflame with anticipation for what would soon come to this land. He would've liked to visit Bethlehem, and possibly see if he could find the house where Joseph and his wife had stayed, but there was no time for that now. There was too much to be done, and John had been given the task of doing it. He had to prepare the way for the Messiah's arrival, and that would start with preparing men's' hearts first.
"He is coming," he whispered to himself as he took one last look at the lonely town of Bethlehem, and then set off towards the Jordan River, and his ministry.
He is coming.