And they lived happily ever after.
And they lived semi-happily until they were priced out of the housing market.
They lived miserably until the neighbor’s dog lost his voice.
He in his recliner, she in hers, they lived nappily ever after.
As a novelist, I’m used to the “delete” key. I’m adjusting to the idea that some of my favorite passages won’t wind up in the final product. And I’m now well-practiced in the concept of alternate endings, sometimes changing them radically from how they were originally sketched out in the drawing room of imagination.
Have you imagined alternate endings for well-known Bible stories?
What if Adam had said to Eve, “Darlin’, I know this looks tempting, but I can’t in good conscience disobey my God. Drop the fruit, sweetie.” Can you imagine all that would have been affected if Adam had refused to disobey, no matter how Eve pouted?
What if the story of Moses had a different ending? What if when Moses descended the mountain he’d found the Israelites on their knees, praying for him, eager to know what God had to say? What if they’d been caught up in worship rather than idolatry?
What if Ananias had done the courageous thing and told the truth about the sale of his home?
What if Pilate had listened to his wife?
Change one detail and the outcome is dramatically different.
We know that all events in history have worked into the sovereign plan of God, but it’s sobering to think about how many times we stand in a place of decision-making with several optional endings. We’ve read how stories end when a person chooses to ignore the wisdom of God. Not even close to a happily ever after.
PRAYER: Lord, I’m humbled by the reminder that my wrong choices write alternate endings to the life You’ve designed for me. Thank You for Your grace that offers me the ultimate happily ever(lasting) after.
“He that heareth my word, and believeth on him who sent me, hath everlasting life,” John 5:24a KJV.
Today’s devotional is by Cynthia Ruchti, writer/producer of THE HEARTBEAT OF THE HOME radio ministry and president of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). Cynthia’s debut novel—They Almost Always Come Home—releases with Abingdon Press May 1, 2010–http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JtZb0by984g. Cynthia writes stories of Hope-that-glows-in-the-dark (www.cynthiaruchti.com).