Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction – Lord, Which Church Do You Go To?

As Peter lifted up his head, a smile covered his face. The joy of his new conversion to the Lord filled his eyes. The Uncle who led him to the Lord excitedly spoke, “I’ve got to catch a plane, but let me leave you with some advice. To grow as a Christian you must get involved with others in a church! Body life is what causes you to grow.”

“Where should I go?” asked Peter.

“Not being from this city, I can’t help you. Look up churches in the yellow pages and let the Lord guide you. I’ve got to go; I’ll be calling,” said the Uncle as he dashed out the door.

Peter , for the first time in his life, quietly prayed alone as he had been instructed, “please, Lord, lead me to Your church where I can grow, whatever means.”

The next Sunday, Peter arrived at a church he had read about in Saturday’s paper. It was known for its great preaching on topics relevant to everyday life. As Peter sat through the sermon he was impressed with the style of the preacher’s delivery. The message was on self-realization and finding your true self in God. On the way back home, he thought to himself that this must be where he should go, since he felt so good after the words the preacher spoke.

At that moment, for the first time since conversion, Peter heard God speak to him. It was not an audible voice, but he knew it was not his mind speaking to him either. “Son, I want you to become like Jesus. The preacher you heard today only made you feel good about yourself. Hope is good, if it is hope centered on what I can do for you. My first priority is not to make you feel happy but to introduce you to who I am.  Great teaching is of me, I gave this preacher his gift. But teaching is to bring you into an encounter with Me not yourself or the preacher.”

The next Sunday, Peter excitedly went to a new church he heard about from a fellow coworker. It supposedly had the best music in time with the largest number of musicians, instruments, and singers. The music was said to be so good it must originate in the throne room of God. Peter was overwhelmed with the service. It was indeed good and was so well organized it was better than many concerts he had paid to see. As Peter was making his way home he said to himself, “I can surely grow here with such great music.”

“Peter,” the voice of God spoke again. Hearing this voice again was the greatest thrill Peter had ever experienced. “This is not where I want you to go.”

“Why, Lord,” Peter replied?

“I want you to meet Me at church. You didn’t think about me once during the service. The musicians were good. I know, I gave them their gift. But all you thought about was them.  You went to church thinking about them, and you left thinking about them. Music is to bring you into an encounter with Me. ”

Peter knew this was right. But his heart was sad because he had abandoned the Lord in going to church.

On the third Sunday after his conversion Peter again set out to find a church where he could grow. This time he chose an entirely different type of church, one which reached out into the community. During the announcements he read over the bulletin. The list of outreach activities and programs were astounding – a soup kitchen, senior citizens home visits, teen outreach, homeless ministry, and many others were on the agenda for the week. Peter thought about the good things Jesus constantly did for those around Him. Before he could even say it, the still small voice inside of him spoke, “Son, this is not where I want you to attend. This church is caught up in doing. My church does reach out, but it first concentrates on being rather than doing. I want you to learn how to be then we will do.”

Peter was becoming discouraged in finding a church. As he rounded a corner in his car, God spoke, “that building over there on the left is where I want you to go to church.”

Peter couldn’t believe what he just heard. He replied, “But Lord, that is the biggest church in town. I am afraid I will get lost in the crowd. Do you really want me to go there? I thought you would want me to go to a smaller church.”

God continued, “I do only inhabit certain type of churches but size is not the criteria I choose for my inhabitation. I am in big churches and in small churches. I inhabit churches which allow Jesus to be the head and let Him be over the church. You will grow at this church I am showing you not because they are big or small but because they emphasize what I emphasize – people. Jesus died for people, not programs, performances, and buildings. Church is where you share and live life with your fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord. Jesus and the disciples had church for three years. They cared for one another and bore one another’s burdens. They challenged each other to be more like Me. This is real church life. Full maturity comes only through this type of church life.”

“It is not attending meetings and watching someone perform, being blessed and then going home. Lone rangers never become all they can be. They become self-centered and don’t see their weaknesses. This happens with large and small churches. Sometimes it will be painful as others challenge and correct you. But the unity and growing together will be one of your greatest joys. Sunday is not an end unto itself. It is a celebration of an on-going lifestyle with others and Me. As you participate in church life, get ready for an adventure.“

“Ok, I’m in,” said Peter, “let’s do it!”

As Peter turned his attention back to the highway he didn’t notice the Lord smiling.

“And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and soul” Acts 4:32 

“Bearing one another’s burdens and thus fulfilling the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2, paraphrased.

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction – Who are these Children?

His voice boomed across the courtroom, “Alfonso, do you have anything else to say on your behalf before you are sentenced?”

Alfonso looked around at all the children that surrounded him at the front of the courtroom. There were tens of thousands and more were coming.

“No, my Lord. I didn’t realize real people would be affected by my decision. But who are these children?”

The judge’s gavel pounded on the desk, “I will give you your sentence at the end of the day. You’re dismissed. Bring in the next defendant.”

Alfonso, one of the most powerful politicians in his country left followed by tens of thousands of children.

As the next defendant stood before the judge hundreds of children came in from the side door and stood with him.

“Andre, you stand accused. Do you have anything else to say on your behalf before you are sentenced?”

Andre said, “No, my Lord. If I could do it over I would change everything. I knew what I was doing involved real lives but I wouldn’t admit it. But who are these children?”

The judge’s gavel pounded on the desk, “I will give you your sentence at the end of the day. You’re dismissed. Bring in the next defendant.”

Andre, one of the wealthiest doctors in his country left the courtroom followed by hundreds of children.

Alexander entered the courtroom with his head hung low. As he did eight children came in from the side doors and stood around him.

“Alexander, you stand accused. Do you have anything else to say on your behalf before you are sentenced?”

Alexander with his head low said, “No, my Lord. I just wanted to have fun. I didn’t realize my actions affected other lives. But who are these children?”

The judge’s gavel pounded on the desk, “I will give you your sentence at the end of the day. You’re dismissed. Bring in the next defendant.”

Alexander, a young attractive middle class man left the courtroom followed by 8 children.

———–

As the day came to a close, the Judge said to the security officer, bring in the defendants.

Alfonso, Andre, and Alexander were brought in and stood before the Judge’s bench. Alfonso was surrounded by thousands of children, hundreds surrounded Andre, and eight surrounded Alexander. In fact, most of the children had to stand outside because the courtroom was too small.

The Judge looked at the three defendants. You are here because you have committed murder. You did not know until now the extent of your crimes.

“Alfonso, look around at all these children. They are the ones you murdered.”

Alfonso looked around in dismay. He knew he had committed crimes but not murder, and surely not these thousands of murders.

“He stammered, I know I was a corrupt politician but I never committed murder Judge.”

“Tell that to these children you killed,” the Judge said.

“But…”

“You were the originator of a law in your country that legalized abortion. These are the children that have been aborted since that law was passed last year in your country. You died unexpectedly this year. I knew you would never undo that law so I brought you here early. That was my grace so that more blood would not be on your hands.”

“But…but…”

The Judge turned his attention to Andre, “Andre, …”

Andre interrupted, “I know, I know, I know I overcharged my clients and it was wrong. Please have mercy on me.”

“Andre, you think you are here for your greed and you are right in a different way than you know. Your desire for money caused all these hundreds of children to be aborted in your clinic. It was easy money for you but it was hard on these children,” the Judge said.

The Judge looked around at all three defendants; “these children are all here to witness justice being done.”

Alexander starting sobbing loudly, he knew he was next and his emotions were quickly getting out of control. Tears ran down his cheeks so that he could hardly even see. He spoke before the Judge acknowledged him.

Alexander interrupted the courtroom proceedings, “I understand what happened now. I am so sorry. I am so sorry!”

Alexander turned towards the 8 children that were around him and said directly to them, “I was only wanting to have fun with my girl friend. I didn’t realize that her abortions because of me were killing my sons and daughters. I am so sorry.”

Alexander fell to the floor and wept uncontrollably. The Judge was never able to address Alexander directly again because of his crying.

The Judge stood up. None of the regulars in the courtroom had ever seen this before. As he stood up the defendant’s eyes were drawn to the nameplate on the judge’s bench. It said ‘Jesus – King of Kings and Lord of Lords’.

Jesus looked at each of the defendants. He was not mad or vengeful. Instead he was sad.

“Your ignorance is no excuse. You chose other things instead of the right things. There was a way around your crimes if you had taken it.”

At that moment, Jesus moved his hands that were in a clasp behind his back and spread them wide at his sides with his palms out. The nail scars in his hands were visible to everyone in the courtroom.

“Unfortunately, your concerns eclipsed what should have been your main concern,” Jesus said.

Jesus continued to look at the defendants with love, mercy, and compassion. Alfonso stood perplexed, Andre stood slightly defiant, and Alexander could not stand at all. None of them could look Jesus in the eyes.

“Today is the end time judgment and I sentence you as murderers. Since you are not covered by my salvation your punishment is spiritual death in the eternal lake of fire.”

There was a long pause, “I wanted to know you and now it will never happen. You are dismissed.”

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction…Down, Down, Down

“Oh No! It’s happening again!”

“I can’t do it this time. I will never make it out. I can’t take the trip downward again! I almost didn’t come back up last time. What if I don’t get out this time? What if I stay down forever? What will happen to my family, my job? What will my friends think?”

“It hasn’t been that long since I made the trip before. Why can’t it just go away and stop dragging me down?”

“It’s just like last time but more intense. It’s coming at me and pressing in.”

“Oh my God please save me!”

“I hear my friends telling me not to give in but their voices are dimming as I go down. It won’t be long till I will not be able to hear them any longer.”

I turn to see the door of my dark soul opening. It is a cave that is dark and foreboding. It’s mouth is mocking me, inviting me sarcastically to enter a place that it knows I do not enjoy. Before I could turn away I am walking down the hard corridor bumping into the walls with my spirit.

As I step through the door of my soul’s cave my vision narrows to a few feet. A chilling, cold wind blows across me from seemingly miles beneath my feet from dark places that I have yet to explore. As my eyes adjust to the low light I see a spiraling staircase carved out of stone making its way downward to places that provide only torment. I feel the hardness of the first stone step up into my back as painful memories flood my mind. “God,” I whimper, “why is this happening to me again? Please make it stop.”

Descending the staircase I go round and round downward and my twin friends of loneliness and hopelessness grip my heart. They come flooding up into my lungs like water filling a pool drowning me of all life. I can no longer hear my friends, reality, or hope. Something destructive keeps pulling me towards it. I am now surrounded by total darkness and have to direct my path with my hands against the wall while my feet search for the steps. But I keep going down and I am powerless to stop it. Constantly I feel like I might fall and then I would not know which way would be up.

Something is drawing me with malice and anger. Though I feel no human presence its voice is real and cruel: “You are worth nothing…You are going insane…You have no hope, only death and heartache awaits you. There is no hope from your situation.”

In my soul I crumple to the floor crying out for deliverance.

In my body I fall into my bed hoping for sleep that will erase the drowning. For in sleep is the only place I find temporary relief from this cave called Depression.

As my body falls asleep, I enter a dream. At least I think it is a dream, maybe it is more. I see Jesus approaching me. Maybe it is a God dream. He speaks to me, “Son, you will never be delivered from depression by looking inward. You must turn your eyes upward towards the cave entrance and look for me. Your soul is a never-ending staircase that leads to destruction. Introspection will only take you deeper. You must stop looking downward into the pit and look upwards toward me.”

I am suddenly awake in my bed. Was that God? Was that my imagination? Will that work? Pills and other sedations haven’t worked. Is that my cure for depression?

I turn the eyes of my soul upward and start looking for Jesus and whisper under my breath, “Jesus, I need you.”

As I sit up in the bed I feel myself walking back up again the spiral staircase. “Just keep my eyes upward I repeat to myself. Just keep my eyes upward.”

Written for everyone who suffers from depression. Always look upward.

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction…Take the Light

The sun had long ago set. Darkness had fallen and the touch of dew was on my face. The moonless night cast its blackness across the land. Moms, dads, and kids had been asleep for several hours. My digital watch beeped twice notifying me it was 2 am. I resented the intrusion upon my peace as I admired the beauty of the city resting in the valley below. I had for many years prayed to see the world as God sees it, to let my eyes be extensions of His eyes. Since then He had shown me much beauty, much love, much orderliness, much creativity in our walks together. But tonight He let me see what sin had done to His creation.

My eyes were guided to details in the valley that I hadn’t noticed before. He showed me the part of creation that He was the most proud of – that sixth-day miracle – people. People were the height of His creation.

I saw a drinking bar where a heavy door with a thick pane of glass swung open and saw a man named Robert come staggering out. The smell of beer came with him as he fell over his feet trying to find his keys. The blackness of the night seemed pale in comparison to the darkness around him. The prince of darkness had him firmly in his grip. Demonic spirits hung around him so thickly that all spiritual understanding and insight were gone.

“God,” I cried out, “how can this be? Robert is the president of our company. He seems to have it all together!” The Lord spoke softly to me, “the darkness surrounds him even in the day, and he hurts because he is not fulfilled without me. Son, he needs the Light.”

My teary eyes were drawn across town to a beautiful ranch house. The lights were out and everyone seemed to be asleep. Before I had time to consider what I was seeing, my eyes were drawn to the den where I saw the mother of three slouched on the couch. At first I thought she was praying. But the sobbing sounds told me differently. Her heart was breaking for she had just discovered that her husband had another woman in his life. I watched and cried as the devil’s soldiers gleefully tormented the woman. Darkness of the worst kind, spiritual darkness, filled the house. I heard God say quietly, “She needs the Light.”

The next scene was one of gaiety and joy. The Prom was just finishing up and everyone was leaving. As the gym lights were turned out my eyes fixed upon a girl in the corner of the yard. Puzzlement quickly filled my mind as her hands were pushing pills down her throat to end her life.

“Why, Lord? You must stop her now,” I pleaded! God crying said, “She told her boyfriend that she is pregnant. He dumped her tonight for someone else.”

I could see the cohorts of hell weaving their despair and darkness upon her. The Lord’s words echoed in my ears, “She needs the Light.”

The ability to see into people’s lives stopped and I was back on the hill top looking at the city again. I cried, “No, Lord, bring them to the Light! Bring them to Church!” Instantly I saw lights piercing the darkness. They were the lights of the churches in the city.

Praise the Lord! The darkness will be removed I thought! But very quickly the Lord arrested my jubilation and reminded me that these lights had been there for some time.

God spoke His last words of the night to me, “Son, the Light does not clear away the darkness of the city when contained inside the church walls. You must take the Light to the people. You must show love and kindness to my people. They are too much in darkness to come to the Church. As Jesus took the Light to you take Jesus to them. Be a loving help wherever you can and share Jesus whenever you get a chance. Your love and concern will be what gives them hope! Then they can come inside the Church.”

“You are the light of the world.” Matthew 5:14

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction…What Have We Come Too?

Crying in his arms she said, “I’ve got something to tell you.” She then broke out in uncontrollable sobs for several minutes.

He spoke softly, “It’s alright dear, you can tell me. You know that I love you and want only the best for you.”

This made her cry all the more. After several long minutes she managed a few choking words, “You will never love me after today.”

Being caught by surprise and not sure what was coming next he responded, “Nothing will ever separate us. I am eagerly awaiting our coming marriage. Please tell me what is bothering you.”

She asked him to sit down and then proceeded to tell her secret, “My period didn’t come this month.”

Partly relieved, thinking something worse must be going on, he jumped in, “Are you sick? Do you need to go to a doctor?”

She was now more concerned for him than herself, “No, it’s nothing like that. I took a test this morning and it was positive.”

“What kind of test? What do you mean?”

She was starting to become aggravated now because her hints were not working. Choking back her tears, she finally blurted it out, risking everything, “I’m pregnant!”

The words hit the air and met total silence. She was afraid that she had just ruined all she had ever desired. She had been engaged to this wonderful man for one year. He owned his own construction company and was doing well. He would provide a good living for them. He had lavished her with praises and gifts. She loved him and wanted to be his wife. Now it was all at risk.

She would not look at him. She buried her face in her hands and softly sobbed. She noticed that he removed his hands from her shoulders. If she had looked up, she would have seen pain etched in his eyes. Bewilderment and betrayal was branded across his brow. She did not say a word, but just sobbed. She was not sure if life or death awaited her in his next words.

After a long few seconds, he said, “Who? When? I have always treated you with respect. How could you do something like this?” His deep hurt showed in the tone of his voice.

He paused and waited for her response. He was hurt too much to say anything else.

With her face buried in her hand, she said, “but I don’t know how it happened! I love you and I don’t want this to stand in the way of our marriage. I tell you I don’t know how it happened!”

“You don’t know how it happened? Be realistic, I’m not an idiot! If I marry you, my name and my family’s name will be disgraced. It’s a no-win situation. My friends at church will think we have slept together before marriage. I will be disqualified from my lay position. If I tell them I didn’t get you pregnant, you will be accused of being loose and your reputation ruined.”

Struggling against great emotion she said, “I love you. I don’t know how it happened. It is the truth.”

With patience all gone, he angrily said, “I love you, but I will not go through this disgrace. If you want this wedding to happen, you will have to get an abortion before anyone finds out.”

Her crying stopped along with her heart. She couldn’t believe her ears. She slowly looked up at him. She had been raised in the Word of God with the utmost respect for life. She could not believe this was the same man she deeply loved and respected.

“I can’t do that. This is a life inside of me.”

He retorted, “listen, you have just finished school with a good degree. My dad’s associate has offered you a great job. This could jeopardize all of that! Think of yourself and your future happiness. A child at this time will bog us both down.”

With a new found strength she replied, “I don’t know how this could have happened, but I know this child is special.”

Quickly, he verbally moved in, “I wish you would stop this nonsense talk, ‘I don’t know how it happened stuff’. Don’t bring it up again. I don’t want to know who the father of this child is. You don’t want to bring a child into the world under these circumstances. A child should be wanted by both parents. What quality of life would they have?”

The arguments and responses went back and forth all evening. He refused to budge on his requirement that she get an abortion. She grew in her resolve to die to her long held desires rather than commit a greater evil.

He finally drew the line with one last statement, “Mary, you get an abortion or the wedding is off!”

With death in her soul, she responded, “Joseph, I will not do it. I cannot do it. I am a virgin. I don’t know how this has happened. God has even given me a name for the child of Jesus.”

…What if the virgin birth had happened after the 1973 USA decision legalizing abortion?

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction…I Hate Their Guts!

Lucifer defiantly screamed, “I will form my own kingdom where I rule! People and angels will bow down to me and not you! I will never bow down to anyone again!!!”

The Creator of Lucifer responded with controlled force, “Your name shall no longer be called Lucifer – the Shining One– but Satan – Enemy. Your rebellious angels shall be called demons. Depart from Heaven! Be Gone! As you are removed from My Presence remember you will always have to bow down to me and wherever my presence is!”

DATELINE: Pentecost, approximately 30 A.D.

“King, King, King,” cried out Satan’s scout. “It’s happening again. It’s happening again.” Satan swiveled on his throne high in the earth’s atmosphere to receive the priority message. He took pride in his information gathering network. Almost instantly he was aware of all events on his planet – planet Earth.

“God has returned! God has returned,” said the scout, trembling! “Slow down, you slimy, depraved scout. God has not shown His face on my earth for over 400 years. As a matter of fact, He has only been in one room of a tent or temple for the last 4000 years.”

The scout responded, “but…but…but what about Jesus?”

“Oh shut up. I took care of Him didn’t I?”

“Yea, but He came out of the grave you put him in.”

“Shut up!”

Satan’s voice echoed throughout his chamber and the scout cowered in the corner.

“We haven’t seen Jesus for many days. He’s gone for good! Things are back to the way they were before He came. Don’t mention his name again!”

The scout managed to reply feebly, “But I saw God on earth, Master.”

Satan burned with anger. His eyes betrayed fear rising up within him. He wasn’t as confident on the inside as he acted on the outside. Jesus’ presence on earth was still having an effect on him. After a few seconds he said, “He would never show up now. He wouldn’t dare. I control this planet, and I bow to no one on it!”

The scout bowed low to the ground and responded, “I am telling the truth! God is here. He is inside of man this time! In Jerusalem!”

The entire throne room of Satan panicked upon hearing the news. Demonic spirits normally strong, confident, and cool started shaking in remembrance of the past. Total chaos ensued as fear swept through the room. Even Satan flinched.

Satan’s mind flashed back to the first occurrence when God fellowshipped with man. It was an awful and humbling experience seeing God walk and talk with Adam and Eve. He grimaced with pain at remembrance of this.

Satan flew to Jerusalem. As he grew close to the city his ears heard a sound that sounded like a sound he only heard in God’s throne room. As he grew closer to the crowd of people he realized it was true. He had not heard these sounds since He was kicked out of heaven. He looked down and saw people speaking in what they called tongues. Anger boiled in him as he realized that these signs of God were on his planet! He had to destroy the leader Peter who was preaching.

He quickly flew towards Peter with the intention of killing him. When he got within about 50 yards of Peter he saw something that he had never seen in his entire existence. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing. This was different than at Creation. He screamed with a fear that could be heard through the depths of hell. It was only the second time he had ever screamed with such fear. The first time was only a few days ago when He realized Jesus was no longer in the grave. He quickly stopped advancing towards Peter and hovered in the air about 50 yards above Peter’s head.

As Satan looked at Peter he couldn’t believe his eyes. He took a second look to confirm what he was seeing. It was undeniable. There He was. There was God Himself. There was God inside of Peter! His glory, power, and wisdom were right there. What is this? How come God is inside of man? He thought, “this must be Jesus’ doing. It can’t be true. But it is.”

“Noooooooo,” Satan screamed out! The entire spiritual world including both heaven and hell heard Satan’s cry.

Satan panicked and was more determined than ever to kill Peter. He must kill Peter. He had to kill Peter. He didn’t understand what was going on and the threat had to be eliminated. He started charging once again at Peter. When he came within a few yards of Peter the Presence of God inside of this man swelled powerfully and radiated outward and burned his skin and blinded his eyes. He could get no closer and had to back away.

Unknowing to Satan, as he advanced towards Peter, God spoke to Peter and told him Satan was attacking him. The anointing of God rose up inside of Him and he spoke to the invisible Satan, “I rebuke you in the name of Jesus! You must bow your knee and leave!”

At these words, Satan was knocked out of the air and crumpled to the ground under the force of God. He defiantly looked up at Peter and spoke to his mind, “Who do you think I am! I do not obey weak human flesh!” Peter spoke again, “You must bow to the God who is inside of me. Be gone in Jesus’ name!”

Satan felt like he was hit with a great weight against his chest. He now lay on the ground defeated before Peter. He could not advance any further and was losing ground every moment. He retreated to his throne room and as he left his mind was filled with confusion, shame, and humiliation. As he entered his throne room he suddenly realized there were others in Jerusalem filled with God.

He quickly turned to the scout and demanded, “How many of them had God inside of them?”

“120 your Master.”

A thought so powerful entered his mind that Satan shook with fear. “What if this spreads? What if more humans get God inside of them? How does this happen? I must stop this!”

A picture formed in his mind. “What if thousands, even millions, of humans start rebuking him and he is forced to hit the dirt every time?”

Satan yelled in anger, “I hate their guts! I will not bow to the God inside of them. This must stop! How dare they rebuke me and order me to leave! This is my planet! I am the ruler!”

Thousands in the throne room heard what their Master said. All of them wondered if they would still rule. Just too much had happened in the last 50 days since Jesus’ crucifixion that they didn’t understand.

A second scout from Jerusalem entered the throne room. All eyes turned to the small relatively powerless creature.

Satan wearily turned his attention to the scout, “Yes?”

The demon scout became greatly disturbed as thousands of eyes turned towards him. He had never had an audience like this and didn’t quite know what to do.”

“Speak,” screamed Satan!

The demon bowed low and without looking up at his master said, “I thought you might want to know. God is now inhabiting over 3000 humans.”

 

Faith Fiction Stories

Faith Fiction…The Pain Hurts So Much!

Ziiinnngggg!

It was so close that Roger could hear it. His hair stood on end as the bullet flew by his head and lodged in the wall behind him. He deftly moved to his right and shot back at his opponent with the intention of maiming. His shot went wide of its target. Roger then swung around and instead of escaping the shoot out, he unwittingly walked into his opponent’s line of sight. As soon as he realized what happened it was too late. A bullet caught him in the left shoulder. He looked at down and saw the bullet’s effect on his coat where a small, insignificant hole appeared. A bystander would not have noticed the hole unless they saw the black gunpowder ring around it. But the bullet had found its target.

Roger fell to the floor and in his fall landed on his wounded shoulder. The pain was excruciating. Every nerve in his body cried out for relief. He felt like a red hot iron had been stuck into his body.

There was no time for “licking his wounds”. He was on the defensive and needed to turn the tables to survive. Another direct hit and his life would be over. He rolled over on the floor several times to get out of the line of fire. Somehow he found the strength to rise to his feet and emptied his pistol’s cartridge in the direction of his adversary. He quickly hid behind a wall to avoid return fire.

After a few seconds Roger knew he now had the advantage. No return fire came, only human groans that indicated his enemy was in severe pain. With the upper hand, Roger pressed in to make the most of his advantage. In a full frontal attack, with screams and yelling, he rounded the corner and finished off his assailant.

He would live, but his opponent was dead. As Roger soothed his pains, his heart grew despondent and desperate. He realized he had just killed his wife.

……………..

The battle that was just described happened in Roger’s living room. There were not real bullets flying but they felt like ones. Roger and his wife had been shooting hurtful words at each other hoping to destroy the other. Roger did not physically kill his wife but he did kill her spirit and soul.

The battle that Roger and his wife took part in happens every day as marriage partners who were once intimate lovers wound each other with their words. The words go deep and can cause more damage than physical bullets. The words we speak can burn others souls.

Ever been in a deadly battle like this?

Often the battle of words elevate into yelling as each partner becomes determined to deliver the last bullet. Insults and emotional jabs continue until one person gets the upper hand. No matter who gets the last word, both sides end up in emotional and spiritual intensive care, with the losing partner going down for the final count.

How do we stop the massacre? When one person stops shooting.

If one partner will return a soft answer, or even nothing at all, instead of shooting words, the way of peace can begin (Proverbs 15:1).

Hard? Absolutely!

Impossible? Close to it, but not impossible.

When you receive a cutting remark, don’t fire back. If you do the skirmish will turn into full blown war.

At first it’s fun shooting back, but in the end you will both die if you do. Instead, quietly and inwardly, talk to Jesus and give Him your pain. Ask Him to soothe it and not let the word stick. Ask Him for His love in knowing how to respond.

Also ask Jesus to help you put your gun back in the holster.