Those of you who know me well know that I love faith-based writing, and that I also enjoy flash fiction. Imagine my excitement when I discovered Christian Flash Weekly, a flash contest that uses a passage of Scripture for its weekly prompt in lieu of a photo! Competitors are given 500 words to craft a story based on the Scripture of the week. This is my first attempt at this, but I love the concept!
This Week’s Prompt:
They asked, and He brought quail,
And satisfied them with the bread of heaven.
He opened the rock and water flowed out;
It ran in the dry places like a river.
Hubble Directly Observes Planet Orbiting Fomalhaut. Hubble Telescope, November 13, 2008. (This Photo is in the Public Domain, courtesy of NASA and ESA.)
COURSE OBSTRUCTION DETECTED. HYPERSPACE ENGINES WILL FAIL IN ONE MINUTE.
Hazard lights blinked frantically on every panel as the Zion shuddered from the effects of its emergency deceleration. A violent jolt yanked Joel from sleep and sent him sprawling across the durasteel floor. He cursed, but his voice was lost as the crisis alarm screeched at an earsplitting pitch. The standard lighting must have flickered out, because the entire ship was bathed in the alarming red glow of the emergency generators.
COURSE OBSTRUCTION DETECTED. HYPERSPACE ENGINES WILL FAIL IN THIRTY SECONDS.
Joel leaped to his feet, crying in surprise as his feet left the ground. His stomach churned at the sudden plunge into weightlessness, and his head crashed against the low ceiling.
“Great,” he thought. “Just fantastic.”
Making it to the corridor, Joel gripped the side rails and heaved his weight toward the nose of the rickety old ship.
COURSE OBSTRUCTION DETECTED. HYPERSPACE ENGINES WILL FAIL IN TEN, NINE, EIGHT…
He reached the cockpit and used the launch restraints to lash himself into the pilot’s seat. His eyes flew across the winking flight screens, furiously trying to assess the problem.
Then he was out of time. The Zion groaned in loud protest as it lurched out of light speed, and panic seized Joel’s chest as he glanced through the view shield.
They had dropped into a wild orbit, caught in a large planet’s gravitational pull. Almost immediately, the ship started shaking violently as they were thrust into the atmosphere. Joel slammed his fist against the controls with a frustrated shout.
“Calm down,” a quiet voice spoke. “The LORD will help us.”
Joel whirled to see Gram belted into the co-pilot’s chair, clutching a Star of David with head bowed in prayer.
“Why are you just sitting there?” Joel cried. “I need your help, Gram!”
“I am helping,” she said calmly.
Exasperated, Joel gripped the navigational controls and fought to ease their descent. He grimaced from the strain, and could no longer tame his anger.
“Where was your God when we were forced from our home, Gram? From our planet?”
Gram opened her grey eyes. “He’s been here all along,” she said soothingly. “Who do you think helped us find that fueling station?”
“I did!” Joel began, then gasped as the ship made impact with the ground.
The alarms silenced, and the view shield was covered with dust. After a long moment, Joel ran a diagnostic report.
“We’re stuck here, Gram,” he whispered. “On a dry world with no water. Is this in God’s plan, too?”
“He’ll give us rain,” she said simply. “Have faith.”
Joel felt exhaustion overtake him. He sagged in his seat. Should he even bother trying to explain
“It won’t rain, Gram,” he was resolute. “The environment’s not right for that. I’m sorry –“
His voice broke off as glistening water droplets began pelting the view shield, transforming the dry dust into small brown rivulets.
Joel was speechless, but Gram was not.
“We’re home,” she told him.