He sat on the mountain overlooking a vast and lush valley; fields of grain, wheat, corn, and barley grew near to harvesting. Across the valley, miles in the distance, the sunshine sparkled off the ocean waves. Below him, at the feet of the mountain, the villages and camps of the people spread out with a glowing warmth of life, the laughter of children and the sweet sound of praise to the day, and the glory of the One who made it all.
"Greetings Witness," the messenger said, as the golden sun started to go down, promising to be a beautiful and fiery sunset.
"Welcome Gabriel," Enoch said in greeting to his long time friend. "Do you come in peace, or is the time of need come?"
"In peace I come, friend," Gabriel said, leaning on a golden staff, swaying slightly to the sounds of joy coming from the people below. “For a little while yet, you may enjoy the warmth of the day and the peace that comes.”
"There is hope for them, in their songs." Enoch said, silently listening to the song of praise coming up from the valley. "To turn again, and step back in peace?"
"There is always hope," Gabriel laughed, "if those living turn back to the joy, releasing themselves freely, that God might lead again. That is repentance. But many are they that step away, and not turn back, some that return, but only in seeming."
"Pride, I think, drives them," Enoch said with a laugh, though feeling sad at the thought.
"Yes, it is so," Gabriel said, seeming then to feel the sadness his friend felt. "Often when they step beyond the trial, man feels pride in himself, and not joy in God’s strength in getting them passed."
Enoch's heart welled up within him at the memory of the trials that had passed, and those yet to come. 'Will they be ready?' he thought, reflecting on the darkness that would come before the end. 'For now, they sing praise,and find peace for the day. But when the trial comes, will they yet be singing?’
"Even in the Beginning of His work," Gabriel replied, " it was marked in the journal of Moses, as creation was made, and yet darkness was on the face of it, HE then sent the Light to separate the two, that goodness would be seen for itself. Even so with man. As darkness covered the face of his heart, His Light was sent to separate them. Yet man has turned, in false pride, seeking to take down the weak, and this for their own glory, losing the truth of the real vision."
"Is there no way to remove the dark seed?" Enoch asked.
"Only if they turn in truth," Gabriel replied, shaking his head slowly, "for this the Light came to be, giving light to all."
"I yet stumble," Enoch responded sadly, "many times falling from the trials that come against me. The cares of the needs of the people are great, even at the best of times. Listen to them, in praise they sing now, yet in their trials they cry out against the Father."
"Yes, sadly," Gabriel said, "even as your father Adam, shifting the blame seems to be man's way of saying, 'It is not my fault.' How has this come to this, my friend, that we stand only to see the fall that is yet to come, and still no wiser to the time of its coming?"
"It comes quickly, I think," Enoch said, "though as you say we have some time. All things point to the coming end, but will we be ready for His coming?"
They drew silent, both within their own thought, as the sun went down, and the first star of the evening sparkled to life in the night sky. Slowly, the messenger began to sing, his voice ringing soft and clear as the morning breeze.
"Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord almighty! Early in the morning, our song shall raise to Thee."
Adam joined him in the song, even as the people in the valley below lifted high their own voices in the song,
"Holy, holy, holy, merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed trinity."
"Thank you for the rest, my friend and brother," Gabriel said as he stood, "it is always good to see the humbleness of your heart, and that it changes not with the trial."
“Farewell, my friend,” Enoch said, watching as the messenger disappeared into the mist.
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