John and the Herodians - From the What a Strange Little Man Series (Chapter 8, page 1 of 4)

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Chapter 8

"Come on, guys, who is John?" Bill asked. Then his expression changed as if he had just had an epiphany. "Wait! He's the frozen man, isn't he?"

Mary walked back over to the kitchen table with a smile on her face that lit up the room. Her expression was enough to raise questions from Tom and Woody.

"What is it?" they asked in unison.

"It seems we're going to have a child," I said, staggering back to the table.

"Well, that's great!" Tom said.

"Congratulations," Woody exclaimed.

"Yeah, great, it's wonderful," Bill said, a little perturbed by now. "But, WHO IS JOHN?"

We all looked at him as if he had only asked the question once.

"He's one of the original twelve disciples," Woody explained.

Bill's peachy face, once again changed to a ghostly white.

"You're kidding, right?" He asked.

"I'm afraid not, Bill," I started. "He is from the same century as my wife and I."

He thought for a minute and then said, "It has to be God! How else can this be?" His color had returned to his face, which was now intent on seeing John again.

"Would you like to see him, now?" Woody asked grinning, as he pointed the way to the lab.

Woody, Tom, and Bill left the kitchen, leaving Mary and me alone. I put my arms around her waist and pulled her close to me. I looked into her eyes, hoping my gaze revealed my deep love, and explained how I felt about the recent news.

"I cannot find words that express my joy," I said quietly.

"I know. It's a dream come true," she beamed.

"Can you imagine the privilege afforded us to not have to raise a child under the Roman Empire?"

"There was a time I would have argued with you about the Roman Empire, but I've learned there's more to life than just that," I said.

About that time Woody's servant entered the kitchen and sat at the table. His countenance was distorted by perplexity.

"Something wrong?" Mary asked genuinely concerned.

"I- I had a strange dream last night, and I don't know why," he said as he wiped the sweat from his brow.

"Do you mind telling us the dream?" I asked.

"Not at all," he said as he cleared his throat, "I was in this field of tall, golden grain. It was leaning under the stress of maturity. I don't know much about farming, but I could tell it was ready for harvest." He paused for a moment to catch his breath, and then continued, "As I stood in the middle of this field, a huge black cloud came over the horizon. At first, I thought it was going to storm, but then I noticed it was only about five feet up from the ground. It was so black, and ominous; it was scary. To make matters worse, it was headed right for me! I tried to run, but couldn't move. As it drew closer, I knew it meant the end for me, so I began to pray. All of a sudden a child appeared, as if he came from within the grain itself. He couldn't have been more than two or three years old, but he stood, raised his hand towards the black cloud, and said 'Stop'. I woke up with sweat all over me, and came in here to get some water."

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