Someone came up to me and stuck a flashlight in my eyes. Seriously?
"My name is Michelle, I'm here to help you. Do you have any pain?"
"No." (Just the annoying flashlight you're sticking in my face.)
The lady didn't answer. She just smiled and walked off. What the heck is going on here?
Someone else walking up to me now . . . a cop . . . and another flashlight. What is with you guys and your flashlights?!?
"Hi. How ya doin' kid?"
"I'm Officer Oaks but you can call me Daryl. Can I ask you a few questions?"
"Can you describe for me exactly what happened? Who was driving the car?"
"Umm, Lizzy was. Where is she? Is she alright?"
"Lizzy is fine, Miss . . . Logan. How did your night begin?
"I . . . I don't remember."
"When did you first get in the vehicle tonight."
"After school, I guess. We were going some place. Umm, youth group. We were going to Abby's youth group."
"Okay. What did you do there?"
"Some lady was talking. Destiny . . . something. Everyone called her Dee Dee."
"Okay. Anything else you remember?"
"Yeah. She was talking about Jesus. She was really excited. A little TOO excited, if you know what I mean."
"That's nice Miss Logan. When did you leave your youth group?"
"Oh, wait. Something else happened. Something happened when Dee Dee was talking. She asked us about our faith . . . our relationship with Jesus. Abby didn't want to hear it and wanted to leave. Lizzy did too. Abby was KIND of interested but not really. It was her youth group after all. And Lizzy . . . she really did not want to hear what Dee Dee was saying. But Chanel was really into it. Then something happened."
"What's that, Ma'am?"
"Please, call me Ali. I ain't no ma'am."
"What happened to . . . Chanel, is it?"
"Yeah, This lady, Dee Dee, was talking and she was really excited about Jesus. She was telling us all about sin and repentance and how we needed to KNOW Jesus and ask Him to forgive us. I don't know. Maybe you should ask Miss "Destiny.""
"We will ma'am. I mean . . Ali. What happened then?"
"Well, one of Abby's youth leaders came over to us . . . Maddy was her name."
"Well Maddy and Chanel went off in the corner and talked all night. Then Chanel started crying and Maddy gave her a hug. They talked some more and prayed I guess. It kinda looked that way."
"And then we left. Chanel really wanted to go some place. So we left."
"Where did you go then?
"DQ. Hey, can I get something for my head? It's really pounding."
"Sure. Hey, Jenny! Jenny!! Can you bring this kid something for her head? Thanks."
"So what happened at Dairy Queen?"
"Chanel wanted to tell her friend Josee something. Josee works there. She and Josee were talking all excited like. They both started jumping up and down and hugging each other. Weird. Anyway, then we took off for the Truck Stop."
"Busy night. And what happened there?"
"What ALWAYS happens there, we sat in the corner booth and ordered coffee and fries. Then Chanel started telling Judy, she's our waitress, she started telling her all about what had happened at the youth group. Then Judy got all excited. I've never see her excited like that. She was slopping coffee everywhere! And I didn't think they even knew each other! But it was almost like they were related. Weird."
"Well, we got in the car . . . and . . . . that's the last thing I remember. Lizzy wanted to do something else and Abby was all for that. Lizzy was kind of mad actually. I just wanted to be out of the car. Then Lizzy started yelling at Chanel. Is that lady ever gonna get me those pain meds?"
"Sorry. Hey Jenny!! You can talk to Officer Ed later. This kid needs those pain meds. Okay, You said Lizzy was driving the car, right Ali?"
"Yeah. Chanel and I were in the back seat, She was calling her mom. Umm, that's Kathy, if you're taking notes."
"I am. Go on."
"Yeah. I remember Lizzy leaning into the backseat, grabbing for Chanel's phone . . . tryming to make her stop."
"And then? What happened next?"
"That's it. I was in the car and now . . . I'm here. Hey, is that Lizzy's car?!? Oh, wow! Lizzy?? LIZZY!!!!!"
"Hey, HEY!! Settle down. Take is easy. Lizzy is alright. She's got a concussion and we think she has a broken arm but she's okay."
"And Chanel? Where is SHE? Officer Daryl? Where is Chanel?"
* * * * *All that happened over a year ago now. I still can't believe she's gone. I never saw Lizzy again after graduation. Abby neither. They both just kind of drifted away. I still see Chanel's mom though. Maybe I should call her Auntie Kathy because that's what she feels like to me.
I miss Chanel SO much. She was so excited to tell other people about her new-found faith and what had happened to her that night. I almost wanted to believe it myself but I'm . . . I'm just not sure. Still, there was something in what Dee Dee said that night. I can even remember it.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."
Hmm. Not perish? Eternal life? Maybe Chanel isn't really dead then. Maybe that means . . . she's just with Jesus.
* * * * *
"That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. 2 And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, 6 but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears, let him hear.”
16 But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. 17 For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.
18 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. 23 But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” - Matthew 13:1-23
Thanks to those who allowed me to use their names in this short little story. I will be writing more of these in the future. Stay tuned . . . and blessed be the name of the Lord!