|Let's all meet again some time ...|
In Gods' Good Time
C V Ford
Chapter 28: Epilogues
If you're reading this, it means we have gone. Needless to say, Jack and I were as much surprised as anyone when we still found ourselves here after reciting our vows. It seems the good Lord wanted us to spend some time as man and wife before taking us home and for that we are grateful to Him.
Of course we were never really sure of when we would leave but in case we hadn't any time for a real last word with you and the others, we thought some letters to be appropriate.
Wether we have passed on to be with our Lord or maybe returned to our previous lives, either way, don't cry or worry over us. Our time here is over. We go to a better place. You need not be concerned.
It is we who are concerned about you and the others.
Your time, however long you've been here already (Years?), may have only just begun. It is you who are still in that in-between and may see many more pass through.
As I said some time ago, you have all eternity before you. Forever is a long time for fighting God.
You don't think Kanade is really an angel of God, do you? I understand you got to know her some time before you formed the Battlefront. When one thinks about it, the powers she displays are actually no more fantastic than your way of making tools and weapons or for that matter, death here being impossible. She is only utilizing the environment in some way as you and your Front group are in your own.
You may think you're hurting God in your resistance and you'd be right. But you're not hurting Him in the way you think you are.
When I first came here Yuri, I was scared ... and mad. Mad at how unfairly I thought I had been treated in life. I was mad at one and all, thought of ways to get back at the world. At first everything was working out. My anime and movie hobbies led to my interest in languages and history, a better education which in turn unexpectedly opened doors into the world of business. Something that almost never happens to most "otakus".
I had ambitions that later got the better of me. I used people and someone in turn used me. He being much more experienced in the ways of the world, tripped me up. Not only my body but my desire to get ahead was used against me. I found I was to be nothing more than a manipulated toy for others and I got out of that situation as fast as I could.
Only to fall into one worse.
Life and dignity in the world of pornography is cheap. I held on to one and almost completely lost the other. With what tiny bit left, I managed to leave that but just barely.
Having gone home I tried to rebuild into a better life and could have if I had not let the past weigh me down and continue to warp me. In dwelling on it I let even worse damage to myself and my soul happen.
You know even better than I how hard the initial trauma of something can be. The blow is hard, quick and devastating ... The shock paralyzing and numbing. We draw into a hard shell. One so hard that, even though it keeps things out, it's even more effective keeping things in. We're in that shell not wanting to leave.
Just ourselves and our thoughts to keep us company.
And that's where the problem can really begin, Yuri. With only ourselves to refer to ... to consult ... and comfort us. With only ones' self as a frame of reference ... We then block out anything from outside including who and what may help us.
Yuri, God has never intended anyone to suffer, you included. Pain, loneliness, separation and evil are the result of the fallen state of the world we are all born in. A state caused, not by God, but by the negative choices we, starting with the first man and woman (Romans 5:12-21), and initially in your case, others make in life. It's because of this it rains on both the good as well as the bad.
At times we let the choices of others dictate what our future choices and decisions will be. When we make the wrong choices or none at all (Even making no decision is still a choice.) we compound the bad situations we're already in and things get worse. Because of that we tend to blame others for subsequent things going bad.
Sometimes we blame God ... for everything.
We don't want to face the truth about ourselves. It's so much easier to point the finger at others and absolve ourselves.
As in your case, Jack and I went through experiences we'd rather but couldn't forget. They hit hard and mean. We wanted to call God into account as you have and we couldn't help but wonder where He was in all our troubles. Though we had a faith and confidence in Him, it was quite superficial. We subconsciously took the Lord for granted, looking upon Him as convenient and handy. Someone to turn to in case of trouble ... and even then only if we felt like it, as if we could just take or leave Him like we would a tool.
Too others, He's an impersonal force who, though He made the world and all in it, pretty much left things to stumble along to crash and burn.
From our discussions with you in the past, you being a passive Buddhist, you had even less of a conception of and faith in Him and thus doubly innocent compared to us. Yet, you do refer to Him as a real person when you blame Him and not as an unfortunate set of circumstances or fate. You think of Him as an actual individual personality and want Him to reveal Himself so you can have it out with Him.
You say you have a grudge against God because of what happened to your brother and sisters. Though you've never said it, you probably even hate Him.
This proves Yuri, that you know Him on some level. You've always known him in some way in your heart as have all of us (Romans 1:19 and 20.).
There was a story of a martial artist who, though try as he might and no matter how good he got in his skills, still couldn't measure up to his teachers' demanding standards. When he confided in his teacher how much he hated him, the teacher replied "It is a start".
In the Bible copies we've left you and the Battlefront, you'll find a story about a man named Job. Reading it, you'll see a story of a very godly man living his life dedicated to the Lord. He would go out of his way to do that which God commanded and required. No fault could be found in him and he had the favor of God.
Even though he was a very rich and powerful man, he didn't let pride in his achievements blind him into thinking he could do without God or that God had no hand in his life and good fortune. The world was his but he gave credit to God, knowing in the end, that everything belongs to God and it all comes down to Him.
A fallen angel, the very same one who tempted Eve in Eden (Jack said he mentioned that in a discussion he had with you a few months ago.) (1), made a bet with God that he could have Job cursing God if all his children and servants were killed and his wealth stolen.
When this had no effect on Jobs' faith in God, the same fallen angel escalated the wager to Job himself where his body was covered in sores and boils.
Jobs' wife turned on him urging Job to curse God and kill himself. His friends tried to "console" him saying things might have been his fault in some way that he should make up for it to God.
In his misery, Job indulged in self pity and cursed the day he was born and wished he could die and be done with it.
He even questioned God and his motives. He couldn't understand why those terrible things happened to him and why such things happen to good people while evil people go on their way and living well (Job 24:21). He thought God to be unknowable though not impersonal and tried to fathom Gods' mind but couldn't.
But through all his wavering and doubt, he still kept his trust in God
He only knew that God had a purpose for what happens in the world and even though we can't find the particulars, we can know that this purpose, however bad things may seem, works for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28-31).
Job also knew he had one in Heaven speaking for him and pleading his cause (Job 16:19 and 19:25-27.).
Later in the story, Job is confronted by God who restates this.
Appearing in a whirlwind, God tells Job to stay steadfast in his faith in Him. He states His unlimited being and power. He reviews the great works of his creating the world and all in it. God then points out how limited man is in trying to figure him out and how futile it is to try.
Job ends up acknowledging that such things are so and he has no right in questioning Him.
God then restored Jobs' health, his property twice over, new children and a long life.
In effect, God gives Job a new life. A new life that, even here in this in-between, can be yours Yuri.
We can no more completely know the mind of God than we can of the wind or the weather. We have trouble understanding why God allows (But does not do.) the negative things happening in our lives and the world. What we do know is that the world is the way it is and that He has to let things play out.
We can however know to some extent through a relationship with Him. A relationship that comes about through acknowledging our own helplessness and turning to Him in hope, faith and trust that the control He exerts is not random or indifferent.
We begin by acknowledging that blood price he paid through his son, Jesus, that we ourselves cannot (Mark 10:45, Ephesians 1:7, Hebrews 9:22). We cultivate that trust by living the life he would have us live (Matthew 22:37-40). We find the strength to live that life through daily prayer and the reading of His word.
Yuri, the life each of us lives is like a valley. Our view of the sky is limited. We only see of it what the mountains on either side and the trees allow. With some, the valley is wide and more of the sky can be seen. With others, it's narrow and less is seen.
The view can change.
With negativity, less of the sky is perceived. When sorrow, regret, resentment ... despair, the valley becomes a trench, a hole.
Think of a well. The deeper you go the smaller the round view of the sky gets. Anger, despair and hatred gets one deeper and deeper.
Jack and I had descended far in our own bitterness and sadness. Our lives, though not hit as hard as yours, were dead and empty. The farther down we went, the smaller the opening to the sky became. We thank God we didn't go so far down as to not see the sky at all.
Don't let that happen to you, Yuri. Don't go so deep in your resentment that the sky will be completely shut off to you. You can climb up.
With happiness and fulfillment, more of the sky can be seen. With a full relationship with God, much more can be seen. When we're with God in Heaven, ALL can be seen and appreciated and one is in a much better position to know the mind of God. (1st Corinthians 2:9)
Though it doesn't seem so, God does care about you and has a purpose for you in life or as in your present situation, this quasi afterlife we're stuck in. There is a purpose for you being here. Think of it as a second chance. A second chance to reconcile with Him and know Him before leaving for forever. That forever being either with Him ... or without him ... With only your bitter thoughts to dwell on and keep you company.
You say you blame God for what happened to your brother and sisters. It's easy to see why you would say that. All what you loved and cared about were taken from you within thirty minutes in a most brutal way and you wonder why God couldn't have prevented or intervened.
Yuri, Gods' own son, Jesus, was brutally killed too. God Himself saw his son die slowly on that cross and though he could have stepped in, he didn't (Matthew 26:53 and 54).
He could have, but it wasn't in His plan of salvation to have done so.
As the world and the bad things in it must play itself out, so God had to allow Jesus to go through what we all do, through the actions of other fallen beings as ourselves and the consequences of our own choices, good or bad. Thus he went through birth, the good and bad in life, temptation, pain and even death.
In doing so he made it possible for you and those like you to keep from enduring forever the pain and loneliness that you are going through right now and hopefully for you, only temporarily.
Again, the world is the way it is because of the fault of ourselves starting with the first man to today (1). God is letting things play out until the time all who will know him, come and do.
You can be one of those.
Yuri, please think about what we've said and read up on this. Your future in eternity depends on it.
We both hope to see you and the others soon. As promised, when Jack and I get to be with our Lord, we'll meet Mari, Saya and Kei and tell them all we know about you. What your doing, how you're getting along ... And how confident we are that you will be with them soon. I doubt they would want you to miss out on what they're experiencing (John 14:1-3).
Again ... You have a chance where you are. A second chance. According to Gods' word, that's not supposed to happen. It could very well be you are something really special in the eyes of God. Please think about it.
Yours forever in Gods' love,
Jack and Rachel
Snapping open his eyes, Jack stared up at the familiar ceiling of his apartment. The TV on the scene of the film he last remembered at ... Where?
Clutching at his chest, pain now absent.
Did I ... pass out? Rachel! ... Where!?
Lifting himself off the floor he blearily gazed about the place. The door, window frames and drapes brought him up short. They were of the same old house construction he had been for years familiar with.
Head clearing further, he suppressed an anguished cry from welling up within.
Only a dream ... The usual overdone, cop out ending of many a bad sci-fi/horror/fantasy. The fantastic experience from only moments before, the joy and happiness of the latter part ... nothing more than a fanciful thought and illusion ... yet had been so ... real.
Hitching up his loose pants, the man staggered to the window. Parting the blinds, he looked out to see the quiet of Darlington Boulevard and the old Ford sitting where he parked it.
It was a most unique feeling of emptiness to find himself ... home?
Head clearing, with a sigh bordering on weeping, he straightened up, giving his minuscule domain a more thorough once over.
No. His apartment not the same as of a few minutes before. Some of the furniture placed differently ... a backpack and gear from a recent honeymoon camping trip in a corner yet to be sorted ... the Garand rifle resting on the living room table ...
Things as they were when he was last ... there ...
Running his left hand through his hair, something caught on an eyebrow. Looking at the hand ... ring ... wedding ring ...
Hurrying to the bathroom, Jack stared hard into the mirror. The one staring back was not the one pushing retirement moments before but that of the youthful Jack Duffy of several months past!
No. No one here but him yet-
Dashing to the phone, he was about to grab the receiver when he noticed the answering machine message indicator blinking. Reflexively he mashed the button.
"This is a message for James B. Duffy. Mr. Duffy, this is Dr. Delambre of Toronto East General Hospital here in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I'm calling to inform you your wife Rachel is here at our facility due to natural gas asphyxiation. Her condition is stabilized and is resting comfortably. Indications are for a full recovery. We are holding her for observation at this time.
"For further details, please call our facility at 800 - 555 - xxxx or 905 - 555 -
as soon as possible ... Thank you."
"To heck with that," Duffy muttered as he quickly dialed a Canadian cell number he more than already knew by heart and soul.
Only two rings his ears were met with a stern sounding,
"Yes ... I would like to speak with Rachel Duffy? Is she there?"
"Duffy ... Yes ... But she is indisposed right now-"
So cold and formal, who-
"Whom shall I say is calling?"
"This is her husband, Jack Duffy ... May I ask who this is?"
"This ... is her mother."
Yeah, Rachel mentioned I have a mother-in-law now. Anna or something like that. Father in law too ... Duffy you're an idiot!
"Mom! Please! ... Who ... IS it?!"
Duffys' heart leaped. The voice of the other coming in plain and recognisable. No dream ... no illusion. Reality more than assuring and happiness still.
"It's ... Him."
For Anna-Maria O'Hara, the day wasn't full of surprises as much as it was one colossal systemic shock.
On finding her daughter on the floor of her gas filled apartment, she hurled open the windows and dialed 911. Not even waiting for Toronto EMS to arrive she dragged the young womans' limp form outside, waiting exhausted for the ambulance.
The "golden time" being less than ten minutes, several ambulances and more vehicles from the municipal fire department pulled up in their speedy arrival.
Getting Anna aside from her administering CPR, the medics affirmed Rachel still alive, rushing her and the several other residents of the building to Toronto East General. Thankfully, no one was lost.
The fire marshal and gas company officials later stated the cause to be a faulty fitting in a line had finally given way causing the leak.
On waiting for her police sergeant husband Carl to hastily get off duty at his precinct, interesting bits of information hit Anna-Maria like so many fast moving freight trains.
As Rachel, being in an incapacitated state, the ER staff naturally asked Anna-Maria the pertinent questions needed.
"Duffy? Her last name is O'Hara," she said reaching into Rachels' hastily grabbed purse. "See its-!"
Looking at the drivers license and national health card, the woman let out an involuntary gasp.
"Rachel ... Duffy?" She gaped at the cards.
"It says here," the ER nurse pointing at the monitor," she's married to a one James Benjamin Duffy of ... let's see ... Yes! James B. Duffy ... 24 Darlington Blvd., Westerville, Ohio. We've already tried calling him and left a message ... Need to get in touch and let him know."
After an exchange of several more questions and sketchy answers on the part of a VERY confused mother, Anna-Maria was instructed to wait in the ER lobby.
Sitting down, she mulled over the events of the past frantic 40+ minutes.
"Married!? ... When? ... And her not even mentioning it!"
She crossed herself. A habit from her Catholic upbringing she couldn't shake even long after adhering to her Carls' Baptist leanings.
"James ... Duffy! ... Dear Lord, she's made the same mistake I did. An Irishman ... And a Yank at that! And he's almost twice her age ... He's old enough to be ... my older brother!
"Yes young lady. You've a LOT of explaining to do!"
An understatement to say the least, on just then learning some new facts about her "wayward" daughter.
"In running some mandatory tests, we seem to have run into a discrepancey."
Sitting in a chair across a magazine strewn low table, the intern went on.
"Our past data indicates your daughter to have type one herpes ... yet-"
"Please, sweet Jesus," the more than concerned mother implored silently, "not something worse ..."
"-our tests keep coming back negative ... no trace at all."
Anna-Maria stared deadpan at the intern in disbelief.
"There's no cure for that ... and ... it doesn't just go away ... Does it?"
"No Mrs. O'Hara, that's impossible," the intern answered. "It could very well be she never had it at all to begin with."
"Never ... had it ..."
"Other tests show alphafeto protein and beta quant counts rather high."
"For males it would indicate a possible onset of any of various forms of cancer but in the case of females, higher levels are taken into consideration and with further checking ... well ... Your daughter is pregnant. Possibly for several weeks now."
Slumping exhaustedly in the lobby chair, Anna-Maria O'Hara seemingly contemplating the overhead lighting. In actuality she was looking at nothing at all.
"My daughter almost dies ... Has secretly been married to an older man for the saints know how long ... An incurable chronic disease she may not have had to begin with ... now ...
"AND A GRANDCHILD ON THE WAY!"
Snapping out of her private chaos, she focused on the intern.
"Is there anything ... I can get you? Maybe-"
"No! ... uh ... No ... Nothing right now ... I just need to-"
A nurse stepped up, handing a paper to the intern. A brief whispered several sentence conversation concluded, the intern looked back at the still flabbergasted woman.
"I've just been informed," the doctor arose from the chair, "your daughter is fully conscious now, coherent though a bit disoriented."
Anna-Maria shot out of the chair.
"Yes," doctor replying, "but-"
"I must see her, now!"
"Of course," the physician leading the way back to ER. "But only for a few minutes. We need to prepare a bed and room. We're going to have to hold her for observation for at least 24 hours."
IV attached, Rachel lay on the gurney, exhausted, outwardly calm ... but mentally pained nonetheless. Something wonderful and precious had just been denied her. Moments before what she thought to be the prelude to a wonderful eternity, now proved to be but an illusional fantasy. Cut off from nothing but a dream so real and definite making the reality she was now in, the tawdry substitute it felt.
She was back.
The tears about to flow were cut off by the sudden appearance of her more than concerned mother and the uniformed intern from a few groggy moments before.
Anna-Maria grabbed hold of Rachels' left hand in a tight squeeze.
"Don't talk dear ... just rest. The doctor says you'll be fine. You'll-"
Both gasped at the wedding band about Rachels' finger. Rachel, in spite of her grogginess and fatigue, bolted upright in amazement.
"It's true! It- ... It wasn't some crazy-"
"Mrs. Duffy," the doctor advancing to the gurney. "You need rest. Your husband's being notified as we speak-"
Mrs? ... Duffy? ... HUSBAND!?
"It's real! It wasn't some wild-," pointing to her purse under her mothers' arm. "... MOM! I need to make a call!"
"There'll be plenty of time later for-"
The loud hum of a cell sounded from a purse side pocket.
Noting the anxious looks on both, the doctor nodded.
Taking the cell out and out of reach of her daughter, the older woman took the call.
"Hello?" Coldly calm, Anna-Maria kept herself composed.
A moments passage.
"Duffy ... Yes ... But she is indisposed right now-" Trying to control the situation. "Whom shall I say is calling?"
Another pause in time, Anna-Maria though still formal but getting apprehensive gave an answer to the callers' question.
"This ... is her mother."
"Mom! Please! ... Who ... IS it?!" Rachel anxiously and happily knowing who.
Seeing she couldn't hold off both longer, Anna-Maria slowly handed the phone over to her daughter.
"It's ... HIM."
Shakily grabbing the phone, Rachel put the device to her face.
"Rachel ... dearest-"
"OH 'm GOD! ... JACK! ... Is ... Is that you!?"
"Aw ... Man!"
Sharp intake of breath, eyes snapping awake, the young man on his back in crucifixion pose, stared up into the twilit sky. Mind trying to focus.
"Where am I?" Head slowly going from side to side. "What is this place?"
Running a hand through his orange hair, mind and focus becoming sharper.
To his right, a large three story, three tiered modern glass and brick structure
loomed out of the semi-darkness. On his left, a single level bridge with several other structures beyond.
To his front-
"You up yet?
Bolting upright, the young man took in the source of the sudden question before him.
At a corner of a low retaining wall next to a downward flight of steps, a girl in a strange blue and white school uniform crouched in firing position, shouldering the biggest looking rifle he'd ever seen. Aimed away and down toward a tiny, white haired figure standing on what seemed to be an athletic field.
Turning her green beribboned head toward the young man, the would-be sniper enthusiastically declared-.
"Welcome ... To the Not Dead Yet Battlefront!"
|"Welcome ... To the Not Dead Yet Battlefront!"|
Storyline and original characters (only) copyright © 5-1-14 C V Ford
1. Be sure to re-read chapters 12, 13, and 14.
The proceeding is what's known to believers as "the Roman road" as most of the verses are from the Book of Romans.
1.) Romans 3:10-12 - 10) As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11) There is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God. 12) They are all gone out of the way, they are altogether become unprofitable; there is none that does good., no, not one.
2.) Psalms 14:3 - They are all gone aside, they are altogether become filthy: there is none that does good, no, not one.
3.) Romans 3:23 - For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God;
No one is blameless. If you have trouble wrapping your mind around this, think of it as you would an illness or physical condition. It is a state which we are born under.
4.) Romans 5:12 - Wherefore , as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
The how and why we are that way. Adam is the reason we're under the weight of sin and trapped in this deadly cycle of entropy, decay and death.
5.) Romans 5:8 - But God commends his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
6.) Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Jesus is the way out. The other side of the equation. With our acknowledgement of our sinbound state we can go on to have the Lord correct that.
7.) Romans 10:13 - For whosover shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
8.)Romans 10:9-10 - 9) That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved. 10) For with the heart man believes to righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made to salvation.
This is the how in regard to Jesus. Do these and the cycle has no spiritual claim on you.
9.) Revelation 3:20 - Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Jesus is waiting for you to answer. He has been there all along knocking. It could be you just didn't (Or didn't want to.) hear it.
10.) John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Of course, it goes without saying, "Go and sin no more". I really stink at this.
However, one should always keep going back and asking the Lord for guidance and strength to resist (It's called prayer.). This is what's known as repentance, an active turning away from giving in to ones' baser instincts and it's an ongoing thing.
For guidance I strongly suggest one get in touch with a strong bible believing pastor/church in your area.
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