Copyright ©2002 Ren Baer

The Gathering - Chapter Nine

Terry had been driving for hours while Martha slept. He was to excited to sleep for they had just enter the Colorado state line. He prayed his sons would be there. He longed to see them again. He stopped to get gas and some coffee. Martha awoke and said, Where are we? We just entered Colorado, answered Terry. I must of slept a long time. You needed to rest, you had been driving for hours. Do we have far to go? she asked. Not much further, replied Terry. Just a few more miles. Martha asked Terry, Do you need anything? Yes, a map, please. Martha goes into the gas station gets two cups of coffee, and a map. She hands a cup to, Terry. Thank you, Martha. You're welcome, she replied. 

Martha takes over driving while Terry looks at a map. Terry, the man at the Gas Station told me they were not accepting cash anymore, that a new law has come into effect as of tomorrow. What law is that? asked Terry. That now your right hand will be scanned to purchase anything. And this is worldwide. Is this the mark of the beast? she asked. Yes, it is, Martha. What will we do, frightened Martha asked. This is where we trust God to provide all are needs. We need to pray, Martha. OK, said she said. Terry and Martha prayed for God's guidance and for the protection of their families. They prayed for His will to be done. 

They finally could view the cabin in the mountains. Matthew stepped outside the cabin. Not long afterwards followed Tony and David. Who is it, Matthew? asked David. "I don't know, answered Matthew. Should we hide? asked Tony. I don't know, answered Matthew. Lets just pray and wait to see who it is. Maybe it is Dad, with excitement said David. That is crazy, said Tony. Let's just wait and see who it is, said Matthew. As the car approached them, they saw a man get out of the car with a smile. It was their dad. They ran out to meet him and they embraced one another. Terry was in tears of joy to see the sons he longed for.

Many years had passed and they had grown so much since the last time he saw them. Terry introduced them to Martha. They all went inside and sat down at the table. Matthew told his dad everything that had happened. He told him all about Ferr, his mom, and sister. I know I saw your mom and sister, said Terry. She came to see me while I was in jail. She and your sister both have the mark of the beast. I saw it myself on their right hands. I have bad news after your mother left she was at a cafe and she went outside leaving your sister inside. When she tried to start the car, the car blew up and your mother was killed. I am sorry, sons, this happened. They all cried for the lost of their mother. Where is Teresa, asked Matthew. She is with Ferr, answered Terry. We got to go get her, said Tony. We can't son, she has the mark, it is too late for her now, with sadness he said. 

They talked for hours and making plans on what they were going to do next. Terry told them all about where he was all these years, and what happened with Mat and how he met his friend's mother, Martha. He also told them about cash is no longer any good. But they could maybe do some trading. he said. It is only a matter of time before they arrested us for being Christians, he told them.

Well, dad, they are already burning down churches in some places as well as bibles. I pray you three have been studying up and have the word grounded inside of you in good ground, he asked. Yes, dad, we have been studying daily, said Matthew. Good, son, very good. I have missed you all very much and I am proud of you that you did not take the mark, said Terry. I wished I could of stopped Mom and Teresa from taking the mark, Dad, but I was too late, said Matthew. Son, there is nothing we can do about that now, you got your brothers to safety and I thank God for this. We got to stay focused and look forward and endure until the end. I just want you all to know when it comes to accept the mark or dying, I will die for what I believe. You must do the same no matter what, said Terry. We will, said David. 

Martha sat quietly listening to the men talk. She did not know what to say or think. She thought about her daughter Mary and her parents. She began to cry. Terry came over and comforted Martha. Are you alright? he asked. I am scared for my family and myself, she answered. Terry looked at her and said, Martha you have been a good friend to me, just as your son was. And I know you have a good heart and love the Lord Jesus. He did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind. Are you afraid to die, Terry, asked Martha? No, Martha, I am not, because I believe the promises of God. You have to believe them also even though you have not seen them come to pass. We will be with the Lord forever if we just stay faithful until we die or Jesus comes back, said Terry. Do you believe this, Martha? Yes, I do, she replied. Terry got up and went outside to bring in some wood. David and Tony followed him. 

Matthew gave some coffee to Martha. Are you alright, Martha, asked Matthew. Yes, this is just really hard for me at times. I understand said, Matthew. You know my son that died was named Matthew, I called him, Mat. He was named after his dad, she said. I am sorry to hear that your son died, said Matthew. I am sorry that your mother died and what has happened to your sister also, said Martha. Yeah, it has been tough, replied Matthew. Are you saved? asked Matthew. Yes, I got saved when your dad got out of jail, she replied. Well, I am glad to hear that, with a smile, said Matthew. 

They all spent the next few months making plans of what they were going to do. During this time Matthew and Martha were getting closer. They would take long walks and talk and share about everything together. Matthew was started to have feelings toward Martha, and she felt the same towards Matthew. 

His dad asked him to go fishing with him. Matthew and his dad left the cabin and went down to the pond. Son, I noticed you and Martha are spending alot of time together, he said. Yes, we are becoming very close, Dad, replied Matthew. Do you love her, Matthew? he asked. Yes, dad I do, answered Matthew. I want to marry her, Dad. Well, Matthew you know we don't have much time left here. Yes, Dad, I know, said Matthew. Well, son, I think you should ask her, and if she accepts I will marry the both of you. Matthew smiled.