The Parable of Time’s Redemption

Abandoned warehouse
Photo by Bence Balla-Schottner on Unsplash
[I consider this to be my first decent short story.  When I finished it, I felt I had grown much as a writer though I was cognizant (and still am) that I have much more to learn.]

Crushed. Devastated. Destroyed. Only three of the words he would have chosen to describe the effects of this great day of reckoning in his life. Old enough to know little, save this: that to him, despite his best efforts to prove his doubts wrong, his life was worth little. Rejection, despair, and loneliness had become his best friends as he traveled the path of self-hatred that ended in destruction. What was the reason behind this traumatic biography? He suffered from a disease called a broken and abused heart from which he believed there was no cure. Don’t think though, that his life was ruined by just a failed attempt to win the heart of a girl. No, his suffering was years in the making- from the insecurity of a broken home to rejection at school to self-criticism. Any one of these things can darken one’s outlook on life severely. Combined, they are enough pain to drive one’s young heart to the insanity of hopelessness.

You may be wondering what became of this young man’s life. He chose to live in darkness, wasting his years becoming the picture they publish next to seclusion in the dictionary. He built so many walls so high and thick around his heart that many were afraid to even approach making an effort to reach him. He became the poster child of neglect and eventually ran away from home in a search of an end to his journey of pain. He lost all sight of himself as he drowned in the mire of self-hatred. He found a place to in his terms, “reside.” There was nowhere at any time he could rest his soul. He knew of no such thing. In darkness where he lived, fear was his pillow and nothing but his own shadow his blanket. His shelter became an abandoned warehouse that had been condemned, not only in business, but also in spirit and life years earlier.

Time lost all track of him and he lost his grasp on life. The diary he kept in his heart was never unlocked. One footnote needing to be shared is how every morning the sun would shine brightly through a small crack in a window just enough to gain his attention. But each time he rejected this symbol of hope for the scars were so real to him he couldn’t deny them for even a moment. He refused to accept hope and so lived the rest of his days in the night.

He was found weeks later there by a few young boys who were his age when had run away. They too, had blinded hearts, yet they believed they had all the answers. They were living for one reason- themselves. Little did they realize that this was their great day of reckoning.

Their curiosity peaked as they checked the body. As they rolled him over onto his back, they saw a piece of paper that was clutched in his hand. His other hand seemed to be clutching his heart. With all the interest their hearts could hold they took the paper and read it, hoping to find some horrific detail to climax the story they would tell. They were disappointed, for it said was, “Don’t be like me. Redeem the time.”

These boys pondered this statement day and night for weeks. It came back to them in dreams and nightmares. Those seven words eventually changed their lives and they lost their selfishness as they drowned their hearts in the Blood of Hope, for they found not only redemption for their time but souls.

Thank the Lord I am but the narrator of this horrifying story. One last detail must be mentioned: shortly before this young man’s death he had looked in a mirror he had found. Little did he know how time had passed him by and the years had now bought his face. It was then he wrote his note and died of shock from a heart attack- for deep down, even though he knew his body was breathing, it was then he came to the full realization that his heart and life had been dead for years.

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