Message in a Bottle

December 24, 2006

It would be a Christmas Eve like none they have ever experienced. A day they’ve longed for without knowing a need existed. A man and woman stranded on the Island of Blame. It’s been thirty-one years since the storms blew them there. But, today would be their day of rescue, their day of freedom from the invisible fence encircling the island in my mind.

A message in a bottle, sent adrift by God long before the storms arrived. (The Most High is most-wise like that, always providing an answer before the question’s birth.) As if adorned with eagle’s wings, this bottle has traveled many miles, and has seen it all. After floating through years of sunshine, rain, ricocheting off passing ships and sea life, the bottle finally reached me this year. But I was not its final destination, nor its rightful owner. My purpose is to give it, lead it home where a loving reception awaits.

As the bottle came nigh, I recognized this purpose and what I must do with it. So, I prepared it nicely for its final, two-day journey, tossing it back adrift, creating waves and ripples to set its course in motion. Still within wading reach, part of me wanted to launch out into the water and bring it back, turn two days into two more years. Those thoughts soon disappeared, though, as the ripples’ rings expanded out of sight.

With a sigh of relief, today…it arrives. Final destination. God’s mission accomplished. Welcome home. The gift and message of forgiveness received. While I won’t see their faces as they unroll the scroll, we still have a lifetime to celebrate the homecoming.

This is the best and most expensive CHRISTmas gift I could have ever given them in my life. It cost me everything…but not as much as Christ paid to show His love and forgiveness for me.



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