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“He’ll always love you, no matter what you’ve done or who you’ve been!” the man shouted. It was then that I saw what the world really is. I wasn’t blind anymore, and the world looked crystal clear for the first time. It was this day at the Alamo that a preacher of compassion showed me the comfort of acceptance, the strength in obedience, the hurt of rejection, the injustice of judgment, and the warmth of unconditional love.
The sun was blaring, and the heat was intense. Leaving the cool interior of the Alamo to go outside made the heat seem completely unreasonable. A huge, old tree stood in the middle of the opening with its limbs reaching out right over our heads as if it were the master of the Alamo, and an old, humble well lay right beneath it.
“Come with me, and let’s make a wish in the well” my mother said to me with a smile on her face. She had awakened me from my daze as I was studying the tree and the well.
“No I’m fine,” I smiled back at her with an expression on my face that confirmed that I had no desire to do so. I had no worries to wish away.
“Aw, come on! Will you please just make a wish with me?” my mother begged, already heading down the path. There was something childish in her manner. It made me smile because I know she only gets that way when she’s completely care-free and happy. I knew in my heart I couldn’t say no to her in all her happiness.
“Ok Mother. I’m coming,” I said without any enthusiasm in my voice. I walked down the path right behind her, looking to each side of me to see if anyone was looking at us with disapproving eyes. I saw no one that did except for the guard that seemed to be giving everyone that look, so I paid no attention to him.
“Here,” she said while handing me a coin. She turned around and paused for a short moment before tossing the coin in her hand over her back and into the well.
“Ok, now you,” she said to me gesturing to the well. I turned around and paused for a short moment just as she did and wished for the first thing that came to mind.
“I wish to be the best servant I can possibly be for my Father.”
I then tossed the coin over my shoulder and into the well and instantly knew that He heard me. The atmosphere around me faded into another world.
My mother smiled at me with approval, and we walked away to join the rest of the family.
We walked out the gate that led to the front of the Alamo, and my heart felt like it was burning with light. The sensation, that was not only engulfing me but all around me, wasn’t because of happiness, but because of a source of love that was not my own. We took our last pictures in front of the Alamo and headed across the small street to the median with the memorial. We sat there enjoying the shade of the trees when his voice first met my ear.
“He’ll always love you, no matter what you’ve done or who you’ve been,” the man shouted. I looked over to see an older man standing in the middle of the median. He was nearly bald, and the hair he did have was snow white, and he wore his Sunday’s best on a day that made shorts seem hot. I could tell by the look on his face that he was exhausted and burning up.
“It’s not too late to accept Him as your Lord and Savior,” the man shouted out while waving one hand in the air and holding a reddish-brown Bible in the other. It was then that He spoke to me. I heard His voice, a voice without words or sound. His voice was one that could only be understood by hearing and feeling it with your heart.
“I heard your wish, and now I’m answering you. This man before you did not enter your life on accident, but by My will. There is something you must see to understand what it means to be My servant.”
I was confused at first but things started to become very clear. The preacher grabbed my attention and the attention of my family, but I slowly started to become enraged to see that we were the only ones respectfully showing him attention. The place was crowded, but no one dared to get close to him. It was like his words were a disease, like the word of God was a disease. They paid him no attention with their nose stuck in a phone or straight up in the air. But strangely I wished they would all at least do that because only a few ignored him; the rest just laughed. And the ones who didn’t laugh just judged from a distance, peering at him like his words were burning their ears. They just rolled their eyes like he was just babbling nonsense. I watched the preacher preach with one of the strongest and truest loves there is: unconditional love. And I watched him pay for it by being rejected and harshly judged by the ones he cared so much for, by the ones he tried so hard to help save. Although they treated him so horribly, he never gave up trying; he never gave up loving; he never stopped listening.
It was as if I was watching everything unfold in a movie; like I was not a part of it, but that I saw this world while standing on another. The reality of it all shocked me like being hit by a high speed train, and my innocence of this harsh reality was eradicated at that point. But now I understood. And I knew in my heart that He knew that I now understood.
“This is the true reality of your world. This is what it means to be My servant. This is the life you will live, but it will bring glory and honor to Me. Tell My son I love him. Let him know that there are still people out there listening and that he is not alone.”
My family was walking away towards the bus pick up, and the preacher was walking away. It was here and now that I had to make a choice: to be a part of this world or something greater. I broke away from my family to walk my own path. I approached the preacher and tapped him on his shoulder.
“Excuse me, sir. Hi. I’m Kaylynn,” I said to him with a friendly smile. He turned to me, and his shocked expression made me think that he did not expect a friendly greeting or did not often get one.
“Oh, well hello. I’m pleased to meet you,” he said returning my friendly smile. He reached out and shook my hand like most preachers do.
“I just wanted to say that I think what you’re doing is just wonderful, and I know that God is proud of you,” I said with a shaky voice, overwhelmed with the presence of God. The preacher seemed shocked again but in a different way. I saw a new kind of smile on his face, and he had a light about him that he didn’t have before. My heart was now at total peace, for I knew that I had also made God proud.
“Well, thank you. It’s always so nice to be able to meet a new sister in Christ,” he smiled at me with a comforting smile. My family had now also come to greet him and although everyone around us judged, the comfort of acceptance of each other was enough for all of us. After a while we all said our “goodbyes” with the preacher and loaded up on the city bus.
“I’m proud of you.”
Then the atmosphere around me faded back to normal and the bursting light in my heart vanished. The intense emotions I had afterward left me in tears, but for once in my life I did not care who saw. They could see me cry because each tear was a blessing. I then knew what it meant to be His servant. I learned the lesson of the comfort in acceptance, the strength in obedience, the hurt in rejection, the injustice of judgment, and the warmth of unconditional love.