Born again

This is a short story I wrote which is inspired by the preaching of Pastor Bob last Sunday. I shall improve on this later on. So far, this is the draft. I hope you too will be blessed.

About five hundred kilometers away, people were dying every minute as guns were fired and bombs were dropped.

The young soldier named Mallinson, only in his seventeenth year, did not expect to see so many men with such careless hate, men willing to kill even the innocent to forward their wretched ideologies, so after sustaining a gunshot wound in his left arm, he knew that he would not live long. He had lost a great amount of blood, and the infection that occurred was almost incurable according to the doctors who treated him in the make-shift hospital ward. The pain he experienced was both physical and emotional, and it was something that no person could take lightly. Mallison was not an exception.

The boy could practically see death coming towards him, but he would not succumb to it because he felt a need for something. He called for Mr. Andrews, the wardmaster.

The wardmaster was in his late 50's; his face was wrinkled with stress, but he had a grin that made Mallinson smile even for a second. Mr. Andrew's presence comforted the boy.

"Sir." The boy tried to get up to show respect. Mr. Andrew told him it was okay and that Mallinson should not tire himself any more. "Sir, I know I'm going to die moments from now, but I feel that something is missing in my life. Do you know how I can be born again?" The boy's voice was very tired and pained, a voice that showed nothing less than resignation.

"Oh boy. I'm really sorry, but I don't know how," the wardmaster replied. 'Why do you ask, my boy?"

The boy's breathing was becoming heavier every minute.

"I read an old book--the Holy Bible, I was told--that told of a story of Nicodemus who asked Jesus how a man could be born again. I want to be born again, wardmaster, Sir. So please get me a chaplain so he could tell me how I can be born again," Mallinson said, almost in a whisper.

"I will, my boy, I will."

Mr. Andrews knew that Mallinson had lost too much blood to survive for the next two hours. His promise was empty--he didn't call for any chaplain because he believed that the boy was going to die anyway.

When he did his rounds in the ward, Mr. Andrews was surprised to see the boy alive. He went near the bed, and the boy opened his tired eyes, and said, "I am about to die, wardmaster, and I need to be born again. Can you please get a chaplain for me to explain to me how I can be born again? My father abandoned us when I was a child, and so I lived with my mother and sister. We've all lived miserable lives, but I know that if I can be born again, my life will change. Somehow, it will, wardmaster. I know the Lord will help me." The boy's voice, though resigned, sounded with firmness and resolve.

Mr. Andrews said he would call for a chaplain.

Moments later, they boy was still alive, and Mr. Andrews already felt fondly of the boy. Mallinson's breathing was heavier now, he looked paler, and the wardmaster knew for sure that he wouldn't live long. Mr. Andrews approached the bed.

"Where is the chaplain, wardmaster? I need to be born again."

"There is no chaplain, my boy. I am sorry." Mr. Andrews was sorry indeed. He had tried to find someone who knew how to be born again, but the war was raging like fire and it was difficult to find a chaplain in the middle of the war. While watching the boy, he wondered why a person who was about to die would want to talk about being born again. Mr. Andrews, after all, had become an agnostic throughout all these years.

The boy looked very disappointed. It was his last request before he'd die. He had so wanted to be born again, but he didn't know how. What he knew was that he had wanted to go to heaven, to be with God, and not to be in a wretched, horrible place like Hell. Mr. Andrews looked at him with sad eyes--he felt a strong attachment for the boy, for he was a kind soul whose ways were still gentle despite the looming death.

"I may not be able to find a chaplain to tell you about being born again, but I can tell you what my mother had told me when she was still alive. Oh, how I miss her--if anyone knows something about these matters, she would be the one! She lived a happy, simple, prayerful life," the wardmaster told the boy who was getting weaker every minute. "She told me that to be born again, I should accept the Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior. She told me that it's only by the grace of God that man can be saved, not through works but...but...by faith--yes, I think that was what she taught us in Sunday school. She also said something about eternal life--ah, I remember. When someone who had born again dies, he will have eternal life."

The boy thanked him, pleased with what he had heard. Mallinson closed his eyes and mumbled some words which were he alone could understand.

"It works, wardmaster! It works!," he told Mr. Andrews. Mallinson's gladness was too great to bear...despite his situation, he had still managed to smile. "You should try it, Sir. I am born again." The boy, now weaker than ever before, had the look of death in him, but his eyes were moist with tears--not of pain, but of inexpressible joy. He had been born again, and his joy could not be contained.

"Sir, in a few minutes I will die, but I have one thing to ask of you. Please tell this to my mother and sister. I hope to meet them someday in heaven.They live near the bakery at York Street. Please tell them about Jesus. It works!"

"I will, my boy, I will."

"It works! It works! It works....."

The decrescendo of his voice accompanied the halting of his breathing and for a moment, Mr. Andrews had a hard time digesting everything that had happened. Tears swelled from his eyes, for he had learned to love the boy, only 17 years old but showed more wisdom than him.

He too desired to be born again.

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6 thoughts on “Born again”

  1. I loved it! I almost cried! Ang galing Lance, praise God for giving you a talent in writing...
    ~poy

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