Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Abundance (06/08/06)
TITLE: Super-Size Me, God!
By Beth Muehlhausen
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Hot fury pounded in Angela’s temples. Not me. I’ll never be able to love God. Maybe other people can worship Him, but not me. Not me. Not me.
She grabbed her car keys and stomped outside. I’m gonna hang out at Wal-Mart. Any fool can do that.
The fiery red Volkswagan zig-zagged through traffic while her pulse hammered out a telegraph message inside her head: e-m-p-t-y and a-n-g-r-y.
Ugh – I hate this! I’m sorry I ever started going to church.
She passed McDonald’s, and her thoughts shifted involuntarily.
Ah, so you want the super-size deal today…?
HA! Yeah that’s it, super-size me, God!
Pull right up to the next window.
A familiar-looking car sat in the lane on her left at a stoplight. As she rolled to a halt, the passenger in the front seat recognized her.
“Hey Angie! Hey how ya doin’? See you in church in a few minutes!”
Lord, what kind of joke is this? The deacon and his wife…and I wasn’t planning on goin’ today!!
The green light flashed and the car zoomed off as if on its way to a party.
You’re needing something? Hungry? Thirsty?
Was this little encounter at the stoplight an accident?
Vehicles buzzed by on either side. Some loud guy on the radio shouted about an appliance sale to top all sales.
Angela’s white knuckles clenched the steering wheel. She breezed down the road past Wal-Mart, slid into the church parking lot, and marched into a seat in the far back row of the sanctuary. Her nerves screamed “why” as her headache boomed: f-a-i-l-u-r-e.
Maybe I can slip out early…
The atmosphere seemed thick in the church - not oppressive but definitely heavy. She glanced at the clock. It said 11:15 a.m.
The heaviness shrouded her like a blanket. She could hardly sit up; her head drooped.
Where am I?
You are traveling deep within yourself.
You wanted the super-size deal…
If you’re real, if this is real right now and You are here, then show me how to worship You – how to open my heart to You.
Angela began to see pictures in her mind, almost like dreaming. At first they were clips from Jesus’ life, especially his last hours on earth. Then she saw herself - except that her face was blank. Jesus seemed superimposed over the blank-faced person. He was suffering terribly; probably dying.
Then the scene shifted and a very white, bright Jesus stood before the same faceless person. He held out a big gold ring with gold keys dangling from it.
Angela heard Jesus speak, but his lips never moved. It was as if the words came from all around him, not just his mouth. He said, “You can worship me because of what you’re seeing right now.”
Angela understood without any explanation. Fear imprisoned her heart and darkness guarded its locks – but Jesus owned the keys.
Come get the keys, Angela.
Resistance rose up within her – an anger that seemed foreign and yet familiar.
She heard the anger scream and felt its rage shake her. An icy snowstorm of chaos and fury surrounded her.
Angela saw the faceless person look up at Jesus. He stood firm holding the keys, totally unaffected by the chaos and rage.
Angela knew how to receive those keys: confess her faith in Jesus. Mute and seemingly helpless, the faceless person fought for the words for such a confession while wrestling with the chaos. Every once in a while Jesus held back the fury and allowed her to rest before it returned in full force.
Eventually the faceless person blurted out: “I belong to You, Jesus!” and then lunged to clutch the keys while repeating the phrase over and over. With each repetition the chaos diminished until peace and quiet reigned.
You can worship Jesus now, Angela. You will worship, even in public where you will raise your hands to Me. Grace and peace be yours in abundance.*
The scene shifted to a church where the faceless person now wore Angela’s features. She stood tall, radiantly worshipping Jesus with upturned hands. Then the image vanished. As suddenly as it had descended, the heaviness lifted. Angela sat in the back pew, weak and exhausted but filled with peace.
God was here – with me!
The pastor and his wife peered from either side with eager eyes. “Tell us about your encounter, Angela.”
The clock said 4:00 p.m.
* * * * * *
*I Peter 1:2b
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