“Make way for peace!” the voice thundered. Strife, Defiance, Bickering, Anger and Hatred all quaked at the sound that shook the earth under their feet. As soon as they gained their composure, they all shouted in unison: “We will NOT!” Banding themselves together in a war-like force, they glared at the messenger sent from The Voice.
The lone white dove whose name was The Ambassador of Peace fluttered over them and lovingly sprinkled their heads with dewdrops of mercy. “You’re forgiven,” she cooed in a gentle voice, but they could not hear her for their hearts were hard and their ears were blocked by unbelief. To them, the dove appeared as one having no power- an unwelcome intrusion into their lives. Hatred reared up with Anger. “Get out of our way, Ambassador. We have no time for you. We are determined to get what we want,” they growled at her threateningly. “What is it that you want?” the dove asked in her sweet voice. “We want our way and we’ll make war to get it! Get out of here or we’ll make you sorry,” they warned, as Hatred picked up and pointed a loaded shotgun at her. The peaceful dove was unshaken by their words or by the gun pointed in her face because she had the host of heaven surrounding her, which they could not see. Shaking her little head sadly, The Ambassador of Peace found it difficult to understand humans. Most of them that she had been commissioned to help were belligerent and illogical and worse, they did not know themselves. The ambassador heaved a big sigh and flew out of target range. Her mission was near impossible, but she would find a way. She was sure of it. “I know,” she thought! “Yes, I know just the right person to help. There she is!” she chirped cheerfully as she spotted Much Afraid huddled in a corner. Much Afraid more resembled a trapped, frightened mouse expecting to become cat food, than she did a hero. When Much Afraid was only three years old, her family had been viciously murdered by Hatred, a vagabond stranger that they had taken into their home to help. Only little Much Afraid survived the massacre. A family by the name of Fear adopted her and changed her lovely name of Courage to Much Afraid, which was more compatible with their own. She barely remembered her parents and her brothers and sisters but would feel her heart swell with pride and happiness when the townsfolk would tell her about them; that they had been true to their ancestral names of Fortitude and Kindness. How loved they had been by all. At the coming of the dove, Much Afraid lowered her headand closed her eyes. Her fear was so great that she trembled at the sight of anything that moved and would pretend it didn’t exist. “Fear not, little one,” Ambassador spoke softly. “I won’t hurt you for I have been sent from your Father in heaven to tell you that He is pleased with you and that He has work for you to do in His name.” “Me…Me? He’s pleased with me? Are you sure? I haven’t done anything of importance. How could He be pleased with me?” she replied mournfully without much hope that what she heard could be true. “There must be some mistake,” she thought to herself. “Dear, dear, little one. Your Father has seen your heart- that it is kind and gentle. He is pleased that you have made love your aim, for it is for this purpose that were you born.” The dove smiled reassuringly and patted Much Afraid’s head. “Come with me, and I will show you treasures that will make your heart ready for your work.”
The dove touched Much Afraid’s sides with the tip of her wings, and instantly beautiful, golden feathers sprouted. “Oh my, oh my!” the little one cried as her wings spread out and her feet were no longer on the ground. “I can fly. I can really fly,” she exclaimed as off the two of them soared far away to ThePlace of the Treasures. “This place, precious one, is a microcosm of your Father’s heart. All that you find here is yours,” she merrily sang, “for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you His kingdom.“
How the dove enjoyed watching her wide-eyed protégé, whose wings fluttered with so much joy that everything around her vibrated with new song. Never had she seen anything so beautiful as ThePlace of Treasures. “I am not worthy,” Much Afraid sobbed when she took her eyes off the wonders and regarded herself. “In ThePlace of Treasures, no one is allowed to look at the old self,” the Dove sternly admonished. “You were permitted to do so this one time so that you might understand its effect.” Much Afraid rubbed her eyes hoping that she could see the wonders of the treasuresonce more butdarkness was everywhere. There was no sound, no beauty, and no feeling of peace now that her negative word was expressed. “Keep your eyes on things above, on all that is lovely and pure,” the dove warned, “for this is the way to happiness and to health of mind and body. Do you understand? Will you obey this command that is for your good?”
“Yes, oh yes I will if you’ll help me,” Much Afraid replied with trembling lips, but uncertain in her heart that she‘d be able to do so.
“You’ve passed the test, my dear,” Ambassador spoke lovingly and with much relief that Much Afraid was willing for that was all that was needed. Great light burst forth as the multitudes of angels chanted: “She’s willing. She’s willing. Now the work can be done!” In a flash, Much Afraid was no longer much afraid for the sound of the angels’ voices broke through the fear within her heart and she could breathe now without her chest tightening up.
“It’s time to return to the earth Little Courage, the ambassador announced, giving her a push. “You’ve got work to do.” “Little Courage? You called me Little Courage! Why yes! I,.. I do have courage. Isn’t it grand?” “
“Come along now. Flap those wings,” the happy dove commanded. When Little Courage obeyed, gold dust came forth out of her fluttering wings sprinkling all the earth with their beauty and wonder. Every hill, every valley, every house, every man, woman, boy and girl was covered although none could see it for it was in the invisible realm. The gold dust was the sign given that the kingdom- God’s kingdom had come.
Little Courage found herself standing before Strife, Defiance, Bickering, Anger, Hatred, and all of their relatives along with Ego who was their head, and wonder of wonders, she wasn’t afraid. “You can no longer have your way!” Little Courage announced with an authority that even amazed herself. She sparkled, she danced and sang: “The kingdom is here! If I can change, so can you. Indeed you shall change because deep down, you want to. I know you do!”
And it was true. Little Courage who had become Big Courage could tell no lie for she had discovered her true self in The Place of the Treasures. “Come with me and the Ambassador of Peace and I shall take you to the place where you can find yourselves.” And so it came to pass, that none could resist for the way of love had come and gold dust was now visibly seen on everyone.