Conversion - Part I
"But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behavior, slander, and dirty language (Colossians 3:8 NLT)."
Slyvan looked over his small hometown of Wilkenheller and grinned. Today was the day he would make other people suffer like he had. He held magical powers his whole life, which had caused him to be shunned and rejected. Mayor Clayde Evermont demanded that the folks in town could only be saved by attending his personal church and bowing before him, and that magical folks like Slyvan were meant to be looked down on as corrupt beings. The people were manipulated into staying in the terrible conditions the mayor left for them, while he lived with everything he desired. Slyvan may have been driven out of town, but he efficiently learned how to use his powers in his four years of exile. Feeling fully confident with his skills, he was ready to make the mayor pay. He used some of his magic to make himself invisible, and then slipped into the mayor's extravagant church building during an active service.
"My friends, you can be forgiven of your sins, and you can live a great life forever. All you have to do, is bow before me and give your earnings to this church!"
Slyvan observed the mayor on a shiny golden stage, sitting on a giant throne. His audience was cheering in their places, which were ragged camping chairs. He cringed at how easily manipulated they were, then smiled a twisted smile. Slyvan then walked onto the stage before the mayor and became visible for all to see.
"You, I banished you from our wonderful town!" Mayor Evermont yelled. "Take your horrible magic and leave once again!"
"Sure Mr. Mayor, but let the crowd here see some of my horrible magic in action first. My friends, I am going to cast a spell that will impact many around the world. Those that are making poor choices will find themselves transforming into the monstrosities that they truly are. If the mayor is unaffected, then you may continue to believe in him. And here we go!"
The mayor fell to his knees, screaming in pain. His arms turned into vicious snakes, and fangs soon grew all over his face. The crowd screamed and ran out of the church.
"Apologies Mr. Mayor, it seems they don't care for the real you!" Slyvan jeered. "And no one is going to save you!"
"I will help him." A young man said as he walked into the church. "In honor of the name of my Lord Jesus, I will use my magical abilities to heal this man!"
The fangs vanished, and the mayor's arms returned to normal.
"Well done son!" Mayor Evermont exclaimed. "Now let us banish this troublemaker together, and bring my followers back to worship me once again!"
"No, I won't do that!" The young man countered. "It is true that Slyvan needs to change his ways, but so do you! My faith helped me to stop traveling down the wrong path, and it can help both of you as well! May I share my story with you?"
To be continued....
Conversion - Part II
"Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity (Colossians 4:5 NLT)."
"I have no interest in what you have to say!" Mayor Evermont yelled, frantically exiting his church. "I need to gather my people and get them to follow me again!"
The young man looked at Slyvan, who was now trembling.
"You stopped my curse, and yet you are showing me mercy." Slyvan remarked. "I have to hear your story. You are?"
"Kalen." The young man replied. "Like you, I was banished from my hometown for having magical talents. I was taken in by a pastor that introduced me to my faith. I was taught that my sins would be covered by God for accepting the death and resurrection of His son Jesus. I was also taught to care for those in need, just like the pastor and his family did for me. That is why I traveled here, to look for those I can assist with my powers."
"This is a lot to take in, but I wish to learn more." Slyvan answered. Your mercy and willingness to help an enemy like me are fine qualities, and they make me question all I have been doing. How do you suggest I right my wrongs?"
"Consider what God has done for us, and help me to revert the magic you have used." Kalen advised. "Can you reverse the spell?"
"The spell was designed to be hard to undo, that is the true evil behind it." Slyvan answered sadly. "The spell lingers for ten years, and will transform people making poor decisions randomly all over the world. To reverse the effects, each impacted person will have to be confronted directly."
"Then we have our work cut out for us, don't we?" Kalen said with a smile. "Why don't we travel the world together, and seek out those impacted? We can heal them and also offer to help them with their struggles."
"I would very much appreciate that, thank you Kalen!" Slyvan said thankfully, smiling his first non-malicuous smile in years. "I will also enjoy the opportunity to learn more about you, and how your faith drives you."
"Sounds great to me!" Kalen said enthusiastically. "We can begin when you are ready."
The mayor ran back into the church, frantic and shaking.
"They're gone, they're all gone!" Mayor Evermont said, sounding defeated. "I am nothing without my followers! I took them for granted, and now I have this empty church that will fall apart without their support! What can I do now?"
"Stop putting yourself above God and others." Kalen said gently, but firmly. "Stop taking everyone's money and leaving them with nothing. Serve and help others, and become a blessing for those in need. We are leaving now, but will return to check on you soon. I wish you the best of luck Mayor, but we have a mission of our own to begin."
Kalen and Slyvan's adventure will continue....
This story is inspired by Daniel 3:17-18
“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up (Daniel 3:17-18 NLT).”
King Nelkon stood before the one warrior in his army that refused to follow his demands. Once a benevolent king of the small country Grashorn, Nelkon began calling for his army to attack the neighboring countries around them. The neighboring countries had thrived by living in peace and sharing the resources of their lands, but something had changed in Nelkon. Now he wanted everything for himself. His army reluctantly agreed to their ruler’s demands, but a young woman that went by the name Ikari refused.
“You will join us, or my army will crush you!” King Nelkon demanded. “Your faith will do nothing to save you, only I can make that call!”
“My faith remains in God, and His Son that rescued me from my sins through his death and resurrection.” Ikari said firmly. “God can rescue me Himself if He chooses, or He can send someone He has chosen to work through. I believe in His timing. And even if He decides not to help me, I won’t go through with this plan of yours.”
“Then you must die, and it is a shame!” King Nelkon yelled, as his eyes glowed red and his mouth began baring fangs. “You are one of my finest warriors, but if you do not do all that I command, I have no place for you. My army of loyal followers, destroy her now!”
Ikari drew her sword, prepared to defend herself to the end if needed. To her surprise, no one in the king’s army attacked. In fact, they were all frozen in place, unable to move. Ikari sensed that she was not alone after all, and she looked to her right and left. On either side of her were two men who each held a glowing blue fist in the air.
“We heard reports from the neighboring countries that the king here has been acting out of character, and we have arrived to help.” One of the men said. “My name is Kalen, and the fellow here with me is Slyvan.”
“Hello Ikari.” Slyvan added. “I made a grave mistake and unleashed a curse around the world that is causing people to become monsters, a mistake I am seeking to correct. Your king may be one such person, and I will free him from this dark magic that I unleashed.”
“Thank you Kalen and Slyvan, I believe You may have been sent by my Father in Heaven. I accept and appreciate your help.”
“Keep holding back the army Kalen, and I will take care of the king!” Slyvan yelled, rushing past the soldiers. He put his still glowing hand on the king’s shoulder, causing the king’s fangs to revert back to normal teeth, and his eyes to change from red back to their normal color.
“My army, please stand down, I have made a horrible mistake!” King Nelkon cried out. “I confess that the temptation to overthrow our neighbors crossed my mind, and all of a sudden I couldn’t stop myself from following through with those evil thoughts. Please forgive me everyone, I am so very sorry!”
“I am the one that needs to apologize, you fell under a spell that I casted.” Slyvan lamented. “I am traveling the world to fix my mistake, a mistake that unfortunately impacted you. I thought the curse would only go after those that acted in evil ways, I did not know that it would affect those struggling with temptations. Cleaning my mess up will be harder than I thought.”
“You may have caused trouble, but so did I for even considering what I was about to do.” King Nelkon replied sympathetically. “However, in your efforts to change your ways you have saved me, and I think that the God Ikari follows sent you to do exactly that. Keep on changing the world and yourself through your new direction, and as a token of my appreciation for keeping my country and our neighbors from shedding blood, I would like to offer the service of any volunteers from my army that would like to join you. If any of you would like to travel with these gentlemen, you have my blessing.”
“I will join them if they will allow me.” Ikari said with a smile. “I believe they are doing God’s work, and I would like to be a part of it.”
“Thank you Ikari, your bravery and conviction would be a great asset to our cause.” Kalen said happily. “Do you agree Slyvan?”
“I do, and I thank you too Ikari.” Slyvan said gratefully. “To undo my curse, your assistance will be most beneficial!”
*Kalen, Slyvan, and Ikari’s adventures will continue*
An Alternate Holiday Story From A Small Snowy Town
"So let me get this straight, you both have magical abilities and were previously shunned because of them, and the poor treatment Slyvan went through caused him to cast a worldwide curse?"
"That's right Ikari." Kalen answered. "Slyvan's curse is causing people who make bad choices to become monsters. However. Slyvan has had a change of heart, and he wants to save those impacted by his curse."
"Yes, this is true." Slyvan said humbly. "I still have much to think about, but Kalen's faith in God moved me, and I want to right my wrongs. I am considering Kalen's beliefs while I seek out those my curse is impacting. And with it even affecting those that are simply being tempted to do something wrong, we have our work cut out for us."
"Right, my king's attempted attack that you both stopped." Ikari reflected. "I'm a believer too Kalen, and I will gladly work with you. And Slyvan, I will gladly help you in your redemptive cause as well."
"Thank you Ikari, I appreciate it." Slyvan said sincerely with a smile. "It would seem that we don't have to look very far for our next victim to assist."
The trio had arrived in the small town Chriscendal, and the town's inhabitants were running and screaming in terror. Christmas candy, cards, and decorations were flying around the town, terrorizing the townsfolk.
"I'll protect the folks here, and you guys find the source!" Ikari yelled, drawing her sword and attacking the holiday traditions that had become weapons.
An attractive couple in the distance laughed gleefully as they held their interlocking hands in the air. Their hands glowed purple as various Christmas items flew past them.
"We may look like we belong in a Hallmark movie, but we hate Christmas!" The couple jeered. "This small town may have snow, but it won't have any holiday cheer in this story! Besides, it's too early anyway, Thanksgiving hasn't even arrived yet!"
Ikari continued striking down decorations, cards and candy with her blade. A few Hallmark Christmas romance dvds were also felled by her sword.
"I can't believe they're making me destroy some of my favorite films!" Ikari lamented. "Stop those Scrooges guys!"
Slyvan and Kalen ran towards the power couple, dodging candy canes and giant lawn Santas that were being flung at them from the couple's abilities that had been granted to them by Slyvan's curse.
"Cover me Kalen, and I'll stop them." Slyvan said with resolve.
Kalen smiled and nodded. Kalen blasted attacks away with laser blasts from his hands as Sylvan ran beside him. Once they were close enough, Slyvan dove towards the couple and hugged them, touching their backs with his now glowing blue hands.
All of the holiday projectiles fell into the freshly fallen snow, and the couple stared at Slyvan and Kalen, speechless. Ikari approached and stood by her allies.
"I'm not a Christmas fan either, and the whole good will towards others approach is new for me." Slyvan said kindly. "But Christmas brings a lot of joy to many, especially folks from your town here. You don't have to join in, but don't take it away from those that could use the positive energy in their lives."
"And if you like, we can talk about the one whose birthday we celebrate at Christmas." Kalen added, smiling. "He's helped me through a lot, and He can change your lives too."
"If you need some time before talking with us, here's my contact info." Ikari said, offering a smile and a slip of paper. "If nothing else, I will be happy to listen if you ever need to vent."
The couple apologized and promised to repair the damages they caused, as well as replace everything that they had turned into an attack. They treated Slyvan, Kalen and Ikari to a meal at Chriscendal's famous diner, where they all talked for hours.
After parting ways with the couple, the heroic trio set off, and Slyvan hummed Christmas Carols as they traveled on.
"I love those songs too bud, but let's save it for after Thanksgiving." Kalen teased.
"Don't worry Slyvan, I sing them all year. Don't let Scrooge here stop you." Ikari playfully said back.
The team laughed as they pondered who they would minister to next in their adventures.