Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Part Four of Fearless Trust In God

It took me a little longer this time, but the fourth installment is here.

My story based on Psalm 27

     He landed in San Juan late that night.  He took a pair of jeans, his favorite t-shirt, a jacket and of course personal clothing, plus his toiletries.  When he left to get his stuff at home, they gave him his pistol back.  He took that and his cell also.  His Aunt Rita was leaving for work when she asked, "Where have you been?  I've been worried!...And now where are you going?"  Kyle didn't answer and just walked out and got into his jeep and took off for the out-of-the-way air strip that Juarez had.  There was just the pilot and one of Hernandez' men, Poppi and Fernando.  Poppi, age 37, got his pilot's license in Brazil.  Born and raised by South American terrorists, he got his pilot's license at age 13.  He came to the United States illegally to work for his father's best friend, Raphael Hernandez.  Fernando was 20 and buff, about 6'2". His parents were Baptist missionaries from Mexico.  They were serving in Columbia when Fernando became their prodigal son and left for the United States to work for Hernandez.  He knew the Bible in and out, but decided he didn't want the safe life.  He wanted to experience the wild life, and he did.  He murdered, he robbed and he smuggled drugs since he was 15.  Both men looked like they would kill you if you looked at them wrong.

     "We will be waiting in the hotel in room 124 until 11:00 tomorrow.  The drop off is 8.  Be back or we will find you and kill you, and Hernandez will kill the girl," Fernando ordered Drew. Drew answered back, OK, OK, don't sweat it, I'll be back.  And I'll bring your money too."  Drew took a deep breath and got into a Cadillac and drove off to the same hotel in room 224.  He put the address of the drop off in his GPS.  He tried to sleep a little, but couldn't without having nightmares, so he turned on the TV and watched a movie or two.  He was getting up at 6:30 in the morning and it was going to be a long night without sleep.  He tossed.  He turned.  The TV was a distraction, but the only entertainment for his insomnia.  He wanted to see Sheila again.  His heart ached for her.  The thought of her being held captive and possibly killed, tortured him.  He brought a New American Standard Bible that Pastor Ron gave him last week. It was a tan leather-bound Bible, with Drew Baker 2013 on the spine of the Bible.  He opened it up to the first passage he was introduced to.  Psalm 27.  He read verse four.  One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD and to meditate in His temple.  He knew what he had to do then.  He had to find a church, but at 3 a.m.?

     He grabbed his Bible, cell and pistol.  His wallet was in his back pocket with only about $5 in it.  He had never been out of the 48 states, and was very nervous being in a strange place.  The hotel was lavish, owned by Juarez' mafia.  Everyone that worked there was "owned" by Juarez, so Drew had to quietly leave without notice...the back way.  He got out of there with no one noticing and went to his Caddy and drove to find a church...any church.  He came to this old church that was several hundred years old.  It was St. Baptista Iglesia.  He stopped and went to the stairway of the huge church.  He went to the top of the stairs and stood facing the two doors that was the main entrance.  He was in awe of the sculptures of Jesus and angels.  He noticed how beautiful the stained-glassed windows were.  There was a cross, just above the doorway, in the center.  It was gold and very spectacular.  He was almost in tears.  It looked like the doors were slightly opened.  He looked and quietly walked in.  It was magnificent indeed.  There was a 40 foot wooden cross on the back wall of the church, with bloodstains and a cloth around the horizontal beam, with a red rose where the two beams meet.  He'd never seen anything like it in his life.  The sanctuary sat over a thousand people, at least.  He went to the third row from the back and knelt down.  He bowed his head in silence.

     He told God that he was afraid and that he was sorry for all that he did wrong in his life.  He was ready to trust Jesus with everything.  He prayed and poured out his heart to God for several minutes.  He repented and asked for forgiveness.  He now belonged to Jesus.  He felt a rush of adrenaline as the peace came over him.  Kyle had walked him through the plan of salvation several times, so he had an idea of what to do.  He didn't even plan doing it tonight, but God lead him to such desperation that it was the only thing he felt compelled to do.  And he meant every plea.  He sobbed, but with in at the fact that God was so merciful.  He wanted to call Kyle, Sheila and his Aunt Rita with the news.  He'd call Kyle to thank him and share that they were now brothers in Christ.  He'd call Sheila and Aunt Rita because he wanted them to know Christ.  Drew thought about all Kyle and Pastor Ron taught him, about Christ and the ministry.  He gave their words some thought just then.  God, what do you want from me?, he prayed silently.  He sat in silence for an answer.  He waited.  Nothing.  Five minutes went by and God whispered to him, Minister to my people.  He cried out, "But how, Lord?"   He was confused and yet at peace.  He thought maybe he should talk to someone about it...if he would get out of this mess alive.

     He looked at his watch.  It was now about 4 a.m.  He heard several suspicious noises out in the corridors of the expansive church.  He heard a door creak in the south wing of the church.  Then he heard footsteps coming his way.  He grabbed his gun, ready to shoot anyone who would do him harm.  His phone rang and luckily was on vibrate.  It was Kyle.  He wanted to take the call, but couldn't at this time.  He had to defend himself at the moment.  The footsteps stopped.  Another door creaked and Drew freaked...on the inside.  He had to keep his composure and stay quiet, for fear his assailant would find him.  His heart was beating a hundred and twenty times a minute it seemed.  He heard papers rustling in the footsteps' direction.  He crouched down in the pew aisle to wait for his death.  OH LORD, PLEASE!, he cried inside himself.  What would he do now?  He was bent down with his head resting on his knees, almost crying.  OK, Lord, I'm going to trust you.  You'd better have a plan...please, he asked God.  The footsteps started again.  He heard someone breathing.  The footsteps stopped about six inches from Drew's body.  The assailant put his hand on Drew's shoulder.  What would happen next is a mystery you'll have to wait to find out next time...






Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Pt. Three of My Continuing Story

An original story based on Psalm 27

     Drew was now out in the open and didn't know what to do next.  He knew he had to get away, but where?  Wes and Jose were now running after him.  Jose called in several of their compadres and the next thing Drew knew, about five more enemies came upon him, three in a jeep and two in a helicopter.  He was fumbling for his iPhone and was able to call Kyle.  "Hey Drew!  Where have you been?  Everyone is looking for you!  You're Aunt Rita is beside herself with worry!", Kyle told Drew.  "Some dudes are after me Kyle!  I'm near the mountains in the foothills!  I need help!  It has something to do with Sheila's disappearance!", Drew sputtered.  "I gotta go!  Get help!", Drew exclaimed.  He was on foot and the jeep was coming at him, with bullets flying past him.  The helicopter was hovering, trying to get a shot at him.  He was almost out of the foothills, back to his Cherokee.  He dodged bullets and tried to start his jeep, but it didn't start...not at first.  He finally was able to rev up the engine and take off back into town.  If I go back to town it may draw some attention, he thought.  Or at least keep the helicopter from honing in on me.  He thought back to that Youth Night.  Psalm 27:3.  "How did it go?", he asked himself.  He quoted it out loud.  Though a host encamp against me, my heart will not fear; though war rise against me, in spite of this, I shall be confident.  He thought for a moment with a little confusion.  He questioned God again.  "How, God?"  No answer this time.  Panic set in again.  He cursed.

     By this time it was one in the afternoon.  The traffic was thick and his attackers had backed off, in the jeep as well as the helicopter.  His cell rang.  Unknown number.  Another call from the nut with a kids song fetish?  Not this time.  It was SHEILA!  She was sobbing and he tried to calm her enough for her to cry out, help me!  He also heard a number and a street location.  He got the street, but couldn't pick up on the address.  776 something, Somerton Ave.  He was practically in tears, when a man's voice came on the phone and told him to go to 7765 Somerton Ave...alone.  He gulped in fear.  He put in the address into his GPS and drove.  He reloaded his pistol and got more ammo for back up.  He thought to call Kyle, but knew he would be putting his best friend in danger, so he squashed the thought and went on.  He knew he couldn't even tell Kyle what was happening.  It was now two o'clock.  He had fifteen minutes to get to the address.  It was an old theater, where back in the 1920's they did vaudeville.  It hadn't been used since the late '30s.  The roof was collapsing and the blue paint was worn.  Windows were broken and graffiti was spread across it like wild fire.  He froze.  He knew what this was used for, and he knew he should have known what was happening when he came across the South was a place a drug ring hung out.  The South American mafia ran out of there.  Drew knew this because of the news.  He saw it on the local ten o'clock news one night three months ago.  In fact...oh no!, he thought.  Sheila called in reporting a certain drug dealer who was snooping around the high school.  She had several friends get hooked on drugs from this guy by the name of Estavez, Jorge Estavez.  He was a drug dealer who was in the South American gang, Las Serpientes.  Translated in english is The Snakes.  He thought to himself, This is why Sheila was taken! 

     He came to this steel black door in the back of the antique building.  It wasn't part of the original architecture.  This was put in in the 1990's, when Las Serpientes came to make their first visit.  He then recalled that night on the news.  Senor Raul Juarez was the mafia drug dealer and Jorge Estavez was his third man in the ring.  He was a bad dude that got kids as young as ten to try anything that they had brought over from Columbia.  Drew cringed and cocked his gun, ready.  He rolled the door open.  It was quiet except for a faint cry way in the back room, where another steel door, obviously not original, was locked.  He heard two gun shots and ran toward the crying.  He realized he had to play it cool and quietly walked to the door.  A tall, muscular South American man walked out with a machine gun and looked straight at Drew.  He called out to Drew, "Senor Hernandez is waiting, please step inside."  Before he was able to enter the man searched him head to toe and confiscated his gun.  He thought, Oh no!  Not good!  Both men entered and Drew had a machine gun aimed at his head from the back.  Two more men with muscles and guns were on both sides of Hernandez.  "Come in," he demanded in a soft but firm tone.  Senor Rafael Hernandez was a man of only 5'6", but was the second most powerful in Juarez' mafia.  He didn't look threatening, but his voice boomed strength and evil.  "Glad you made it.  Come.  Sit down and have some tequila," he demanded.  The only problem with that is that Drew never drank tequila.  But it was demanded.

     He took a sip and about gagged.  He still remembered Psalm 27:3 and somehow knew God would take care of him.  He was surprised by that, nevertheless.  Senor Hernandez spoke again.  "I have a deal for you.  In order to get your girlfriend back, I need a favor of you."  Drew took a deep breath.  He was glad he wasn't going to be killed...just yet.  "What do you need me to do?", Drew asked with a shaky voice.  The man put his hands together with his fingertips, under his chin, and just stared blankly at Drew.  Drew didn't know what would be next and that scared him.  The man slightly laughed.  Drew asked again, "What do you want me to do to get me and my girlfriend out of here?"  The man hesitated, then stated, "Patience, my boy!"  He motioned for one of his men that had a package.  The man brought it to Hernandez.  Hernandez looked directly in the eyes of Drew and said, "Take this package to San Juan, Puerto Rico, at 555 La Roca Calle."  It must be drugs, Drew thought.  And Puerto Rico!?  Hernandez got up and went over to Drew and put his hand on his shoulder.  "I will send a plane tonight at 8.  Get what you need at home and be back here at 7:30.  We will be watching you!", Rafael Hernandez ordered.  Drew walked out, hearing the cries of pleas from Sheila.  He held strong and confident.  He would only do this for her, because he loved her.  It can't be that bad.  I'll get over there in secret, and leave in secret.  No one will know, he thought to himself.  Oh God, if you have never helped me before, please help me now, Lord.  He looked back at the building as he was getting in his jeep and leaving.  He looked up and prayed he'd find the confidence David found in Psalm 27.

I had been planning to write more often, but life got in the way.  Stay tuned for Part Four in a couple of days.
God bless,

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Part 2 of Fearless Trust in God

A story based on Psalm 27~Part 2

     Before he knew it, it was 6 in the morning the following day.  He couldn't tell night from day in the cave, but when he woke, he looked at his watch.  He must have gotten 4 or 5 hours of sleep that night, which was a relief.  He always carried a jug of water in the back of his jeep for emergencies, along with power bars ans some crackers.  He managed to take the food and water with him when he left his jeep.  He took a survival course last year because he liked to go hiking in the mountains with Kyle.  It worked well for him now.  He drank and ate little, just enough to get him by, because there were only a dozen bars and crackers and a gallon of water.  He thought, thank goodness I filled it up Monday morning!  He wondered how long he could hide in the cave, and if anyone would be able to rescue him.  No one may not know where he is.  He looked out the entrance of the cave.  The sunlight was just touching down on the trees and the rocks around the cave.  He squinted from the brightness of the light and peeked out carefully to see if anyone was hunting him.  He had the pistol in hand and walked out of the cave.  The light was too bright for him since he had been in the cave for a couple of days, where it was dark.  He noticed an eagle soaring in the east, near the pines on the top of the mountains.  It was a beautiful sight in the midst of Drew's horror.  He saw the snow covered trees and rocks.  The was an owl in the distance.  He thought to himself, I could spend the rest of my life out here, just as long as I had food, water and no one trying to kill me.  The sunlight kept him from shivering as he did last night.  His peace subsided when all of a sudden he heard crunching in the snow.

     He quietly ran back into the cave without anyone seeing him.  He then heard a couple of male voices, one was an American and the other voice seem to have a South American accent.  He heard muffled voices when he entered the cave.  They were talking about Drew and he heard his name.  He went into a panic.  He listened quietly and intently as the strangers talked to each other, but couldn't make anything out.  He was terrified.  They suddenly stopped talking and it was deathly quiet out there.  No voices.  No crunching snow, just dead silence.  His fear grew.  What was next?, he thought.  He pulled out his Aunt Rita's pistol to be ready for a fight.  He didn't cock the pistol, for fear that the men would hear the click.  He heard crunching snow and voices again.  He sat on a rock and prayed.  This was only the second time in a matter of days.  He was getting quite use to praying now.  He learned from Kyle to give praise to God, even in the worst of times, so he praised Him silently.  He remembered a song from Youth Group, on his first night at church.  It was Shout to the Lord.  He wanted to shout, thinking of that song, but only shouted inwardly.  He felt a release of joy at that moment.  There were men out to kill him and yet he felt joy, just thinking about Jesus for the moment.  He shook his head in unbelief.

     He stopped for a moment when he heard the two men talking about him again.  He noticed them calling each other by their names.  He heard one guy call the other one Jose, and Jose called his partner in crime, Wes.  Jose had short dark-hair with a pencil-thin mustache.  He was muscular and was 6' tall, probably age 30.  Wes was a skinny runt of a kid at 5'9", with reddish-brown hair that was down to his shoulders.  He was just a kid at around 19.  The crunching of the snow came closer and the voices became louder.  The joy that Drew felt 5 minutes ago was now turned into fear.  He readied his gun as quietly as he could and braced himself for the worst.  "Let's look in here Wes!", Jose ordered.  Drew wondered if Jose was the leader of the two.  He still didn't understand why Sheila was taken or why he was running for his life.  He thought back to what Pastor Ron was saying that first night at church and then he remembered Psalm 27:2, "When evildoers came upon me to devour my flesh, my adversaries and my enemies stumbled and fell".  Drew thought, "Would God defeat these thugs?  Would I escape this?"  He felt a little hope in that verse and wondered what was happening to him.  He never once gave God or the Bible a thought until he went to church with Kyle that first night.  Aunt Rita was an agnostic and gave no notice to God either.  She was bitter because of her brother and sister-in-law being so wasted on Meth, and not taking care of their son all those years.  She was also angry at God for that same reason.  Drew thought of that at that moment and was sad.  He wasn't still quite sure about God, but deep inside wanted his Aunt Rita to have the same experience.  He'd hope to tell her someday...if he had another chance.

     Just around the corner of the cave, Drew peeked and saw a tall South American man walk in slowly, looking around carefully.  Right behind him was the skinny kid with him.  Drew swallowed hard.  "If we don't find him tonight Jose, Senor Juarez will kill both of us!", the skinny kid piped up.  "Shhh!", Jose demanded, not wanting to let Drew know they were near, if he was.  Drew thought for a minute.  Senor Juarez?  Who in the world was Senor Juarez?"  Sheila never mentioned any of these three people, Jose, Wes or Senor Juarez.  I wish I knew what was going on, he thought to himself.  Luckily, where Drew was standing was very dark and no one would be able to see him, even if they walked by him.  He only hoped they wouldn't hear him breathe or hear his heart racing.  He knew this was it.  Either he had to beat them or die right then and there.  They were breathing distance from him and he froze.  The darkness saved him from certain death, but was also a hindrance to him as well.  He realized suddenly that they may have flashlights.  If they turned them on, he was surely a goner.  He tried to get away from there before they turned on the flashlights, without making one sound.  He held the pistol tightly as sweat ran down his face.  What was next for him?  He made a dash for the opening of the cave.  The men were startled and trampled around in the dark.  Thankfully for Drew, they didn't think to carry flashlights, since it was broad daylight.  Jose and Wes stumbled and fell over each other.  Drew was outside the cave and saw them trying to get up and he thought it was ironic, considering the verse in Psalm about the psalmist's enemies stumbling and falling.  He got a little chuckle out of it, then he ran for his life.

     This part took a little long to publish and I apologize for that.  Stay tuned for the next part of the story.  I hope you enjoyed it so far...