Once upon a time in a land far far away there lived a little boy named Matt. He was a nice Christian boy, and he was blessed to have two wonderful Christian parents and a cute but huge dog as his trusty pet.
Matt had a deep and personal relationship with Jesus, and he enjoyed getting to know the Lord more every single day.
There had always been hostility against Christians from the King of the land but everyone was surprised when the King issued a degree that all Christians should register their names for the sake of book keeping. People didn’t like it especially since his out of the blue book keeping didn’t require non – Christian statistics. Why would it only contain Christian statistics.
The Christians in the Kingdom went along with it all the while skeptical of what the King was doing.
Soon the King ordered all Christians to start wearing red gloves and red vests written “Christian” anytime they are in public so that they could be identified from afar and so they won’t contaminate anything they touch with their Christianity.
At this point, people knew that something big was up and something seriously evil was coming.
The King did all he could to reassure the Christians that what he was doing was in the best interest of the Christians and that he wasn’t planning anything evil.
Some Christians followed his new law. Some others started leaving the kingdom at night to travel to other Kingdoms. While some didn’t obey the King’s new law but they stayed behind because they had already built too much of a life for themselves in his Kingdom and they couldn’t imagine walking away from all the fruits of their hard-work and labor they had built in the Kingdom ever since they were born.
Matt’s parents where one of such people.
They couldn’t imagine themselves leaving and leaving everything they had built behind.
A few days later, the King stopped Christians from leaving his Kingdom. He set people to stand at the gates at night and by day with copy of the list of names of Christians that had registered themselves. Only non – Christians were allowed passage out of the Kingdom for whatsoever reason they wanted. But Christians where not allowed to leave but where allowed to enter his Kingdom.
This new move made some Christians within the Kingdom who didn’t want to leave earlier know now that they have to leave by all means. They tried getting past the people at the gate with the list of names by all means necessary but they always got caught and as soon as they were caught they were thrown in prison for breaking the law. But the interesting thing was that none of their loved ones was ever allowed to contact them and they were never seen or heard from again.
Matt and his parents began to pray ceaselessly at this point. They and other believers started setting aside some hours during the night and during the day to pray.
As time went on, the theaters and the music festivals in the Kingdom started having things included in their art that started suggesting that Christians are out dated and that Christians are the source of all the problems in the Kingdom.
But Matt still stood strong in his faith and refused to buckle under the pressures of persecution.
As the anti – Christian message was preached in public, the preaching of the gospel became tagged as offensive to non – Christians and was therefore out – lawed in the Kingdom. So the King had succeeded in passing his own ideology that Christianity was evil to the people on a daily basis in public and he had taken away THE RIGHTS for Christians to defend their faith in public and tell people what their faith truly taught. So in time, only the King’s idea of what Christianity means was the only idea of Christianity that the non – Christians had.
Over the months, hostility towards Christians by the public began to grow. People started blaming Christians for all the problems in the Kingdom and Christians couldn’t defend themselves because if they did they would be thrown in prison for breaking the law.
But Matt still stood strong in his faith and refused to buckle under the pressures of persecution.
People started charging Christians more money for food, they started forbidden their kids from hanging out with Christians, and in their learning centers all kids where taught that every other god is real but the Christian God is just a big hoax.
It didn’t take long before Christians started being arrested for praying in their homes.
It started with Christianity not being allowed to be preached or practiced in public and was meant to be practiced at home alone. And it soon turned into Christianity was not allowed to be practiced at home too. Which was the obvious direction that everything was heading in the first place.
When a Christian was arrested he was never seen again. If he was ever seen again which almost never happened; he or she always said that they didn’t want to talk about what happened and that they don’t believe in Christ anymore.
Also for some strange and mysterious reason, their financial state seemed to improve when they returned.
The population of Christians in the Kingdom had soon gone for thousands to hundreds.
Matt still have faith in God. He would go about to the playgrounds with his dog and he would preach about Jesus to the other kids there that were around his age. He would play with them and gain their trust first and then trickish-ly start talking about the persecution of Christians and what Christians believe that they are willing to even lay their lives down for what they believe.
Matt believed that even though he was just a little boy, he could turn the Kingdom around. He believed that God could do anything. He believed that the same God who used Moses, Elijah and all the other great men in the Bible to change the course of nature can also use him to change the course of the kingdom he lived in. As a matter of fact, he believed that he was chooses for that purpose.
One morning, the King declared war on all Christians. He sent his soldiers all through the Land looking for Christians to kill them on sight. And the non – Christian community did nothing to stop the King. The were Ok! with his plan.
Matt’s parents got killed one day while they went out to get some food.
When the news of what had happened to his parents reached Matt, Matt was broken on the inside.
He felt as if the foundation of everything he had ever believed in chattered and crumbled from within him.
The weight of the loss was so heavy on Matt as a little boy that for the first time in his life he asked the question; “GOD WHY?”
Matt had a peaceful spirit and a calm heart but at this point he was mad at God.
He wept before God in prayer and he poured out his complaints, accusations and anger towards God.At the end of it, he told God that he no longer believes in God.
Of course, he couldn’t really sincerely say that he believed that there is no God but that was they only way he saw he could use communicate to God that he is mad at him and wants nothing more to do with him. He was going to turn his back on God and he wanted God to know it.
Now Matt could have easily gone to the King’s officials and told them that he denounced Christianity and then get paid and return to his normal way of life but Matt couldn’t do that even though he was mad at God now. He didn’t do it because he felt he would be betraying his parents by going to embrace the King and his followers who were responsible for killing his parents. No matter how much Matt was mad at God now, it was still nothing compared to even how more angry at the King and his followers he had become. Matt told himself that he refused to join the King’s followers because of these reasons and that it had nothing to do with the fact that he still felt the love of God comforting him in his heart.
The remaining Christians where living in hiding all through the kingdom at this time, and Matt had to look for his Aunty who was a Christian.
When he found her, they lived together in a cave with a few other fellow believers.
His Aunty found out that Matt had lost his faith and had given up on Christianity so she prayed for him and would always talk to him about trusting God in all things but he would always prove stubborn and refuse to rededicate his life to Christ. He was still mad about the loss of his parents. He would even ignore his Aunty of give her the silent treatment sometimes when she tried to talk to him about Christ.
However, she never gave up. She would always pray for him, talk to him and make sure that she always did her best to make him and his dog happy. Until one of the believers betrayed them and their cave was raided.
They all managed to get away make it into the nearby forest but his Aunty was shot in the back with a poisoned arrow when she made her escape.
When all the Christians that had escaped from the cave where now safe enough to stop running. They quickly prepared a place for Matt’s Aunty to sit down and rest. They knew that she didn’t have much time left.
Matt held his Aunty as they looked at each other both knowing that they are looking at each other for the last time.
Matt started to regret all the times that he had ignored his Aunty and given her the silence treatment. He knew know just how precious she was to him.
His Aunty could barely speak as the poison began to take full effect as it followed through to every part of her body. “Have faith in your faith”, she said. Then her eyes closed for the last time never to be opened again.
Tears began to bubble like hot water behind Matt’s eyes but as a fountain of tears was about to burst out of his eyes, Matt noticed the look on his Aunty’s face. The look on her face before she died, at the second she died, and right after she died registered in Matt’s brain. It was a look of peace. She was at peace.
That was when Matt remembered that even though many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him (us) out of them all (Psalm 34: 19). And even when we are persecuted and we end up getting killed, we still have hope because we know where we would go when we close our eyes.
It dawned on Matt the peace he was missing in his heart right then.
It also dawned on Matt that in his current state he was probably going to get killed sooner or later. And when he gets killed he would certainly go to hell if he doesn’t re-dedicate his life to Christ.
Matt re-dedicated his life to Christ right then and there as he held his dead Aunty in his arms.
When he was through, the Christians around him said that he was the one that betrayed them as he was the only one who was not a Christian among them. They said that he was faking mourning over his Aunty so they tied him up to a tree in forest and left him there. They tried to catch his dog too but his dog ran away. They decided to forget about the dog and go on their way.
The dog came back when they had gone and after a lot of attempts to cut the rope they used to tie Matt with his teeth, the dog succeeded.
Matt thanked God as he patted the dog on its head.
Unfortunately for the people who tied him there, the real person who was amongst them who betrayed them, betrayed them again and they were caught by the King’s followers. It was only right before they were about to be killed that they discovered who the true traitor was.
Matt however was alone with his dog. He didn’t know where to run to.
He decided to heard towards one of the gates in the Kingdom and hide in the safest place near it he can find and then he would try to make a run for it if he sees the slightest opportunity to do so. If he dies, he dies. If he makes it, he makes it.
As Matt was heading towards the gate through the cover of the forest, he meant some other group of Christians. They told him that some Christians had mounted a resistance and had decided to fight the King and his followers to their deaths. They told him that there was an all out war going on outside the forest but considering how out-numbered the Christians are, they are sure to lose.
They also told Matt that they were heading towards a different direction. That they were heading towards a whole in the wall. Someone had blown a human sized hole in a part of the wall surrounding the Kingdom. They believed it was unguarded and that the King didn’t know about it so that was their way of escape out of the Kingdom.
Matt decided to follow them with his dog.
On their way there as they got out of the forest they saw a girl in a well. They didn’t know who she was but they were certain she was not a Christian. If they left her there she would die.
Matt suggested that they help her but they asked him if he was crazy that doesn’t he know that since she’s a non-Christian that she could tell the King’s followers that she saw them and where she saw them.
Matt told them that leaving her in the well to die was not the Christian thing to do. They told Matt that he should come with them, that this is his last chance and that they are not going to give him the directions to where the hole in the wall is because if they do, after he rescues the girl and the girl turns him in. The King would torture the location out of him and if they themselves would have made it through the hole at that time, that hole could be the only way of escape for other Christians in the city.
All the while, the girl was listening to their conversation from within the well.
Matt taught about it. He had two choices. One was to escape with the other Christians. The second was to be a Christian and save the girl.
Matt told them to go on that he is going to save the girl.
They asked him if he was sure and he said that he was that that what he wanted to do because that is what Jesus would want him to do. That is the Christian way.
They other Christians shook their heads, wished him the best, and moved on on their way.
Matt helped the girl get out of the well.
He tried to ask her how she got trapped in a well in the first place but she refused to answer him. She was more interested in finding out why he would risk his life to save hers. She was also extremely curious that he said that doing that was the Christian way.
She asked him questions about Jesus and the more he spoke the more she wanted to hear more. The anointing of God filled the place and Matt spoke with power and with wisdom. By the time he was through the girl had asked Jesus Christ to come into her life and she was a tongue talking believer.
Matt lifted up his hands with the girl to thank God for his goodness but just then the King himself came out of nowhere with a multitude of soldiers with him.
Matt heard the girl’s hand and wanted to run but he was shocked beyond words to see that she didn’t want to move. Matt wondered what was wrong with her. Doesn’t she know that she is a Christian now and therefore the prey of the King?
Matt tried to pull her with him but she still wouldn’t run. She stood still.
At this point, it was even too late to run and all Matt could think about was that they were dead.
Matt noticed that for some reason all the angry eyes was on him alone and not on her.
The King came down from his horse himself, drew his sword and as he was about to strike Matt, the girl jumped in-between them and shouted, “DON’T YOU DARE FATHER!”
“FATHER?” Matt thought. That was when he realized that the girl he saved was the Princess. He should have known. There was something different and unusually authoritative about her. And Oh! – My, he had gone and lead the Princess to Christ. The King would probably make him die in the worst possible way ever.
However, to Matt’s surprise; he had never seen such authority and influence in anyone before. She was stubborn as stubborn can be and she tells her father that if he wants to kill Matt, then he must kill her too.
The Princess was mad at her Dad for lying about what Christianity is about to all the non-Christians. She argued with her father for hours and ended up making him break to her will. She called a meeting of all the people and told the people to forgive her Dad, and then she explained to them what true Christianity really was calling in Matt to help her clear out some points where she needed help. She ends up ending the war and stopping the killing of Christians.
There was now finally peace in the Kingdom and love could reign once more.
The King however still hated Christians and while he sat with the Princess, Matt, and some other members of the royal family at a private bouquet; the King said, “I still don’t see what I or the nation has to benefit from the presence of Christianity.”
Then Matt spoke up and said, “YOUR ROYAL HIGHNESS. IF I MAY BE PERMITTED TO SPEAK. YOU ASK THE QUESTION WHAT IS IT THAT YOU OR THE NATION HAS TO BENEFIT FROM CHRISTIANITY? WELL, FOR ONE THING YOUR VERY OWN LIFE. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR KILLING MY PARENTS AND EVEN THOUGH I SIT AT YOUR TABLE EATING FOOD WITH A KNIFE AND FORK IN MY HANDS. I HAVEN’T THROWN THE KNIFE AT YOUR HEAD IN-SPITE OF HOW SHARP AND CAPABLE IT IS OF GETTING THE JOB DONE. I HAVE FORGIVEN YOU. IN FACT I EVEN LOVE YOU, ONLY BECAUSE IT IS THE CHRISTIAN THING TO DO.”