Prodigal Daughter: A Bedtime Story for Independence Day

July 4, 2014

The Prodigal Daughter

by Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna

Cold Play, Atlas

Then He said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven. But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons.
Luke 21:10-12
“What do you think of the novel I lent you? Exodus?”
“It’s naive. To put it kindly,” answered the black bearded man.
“I remember how it was before the walls came down. Before we came to America. Your mother, she never forgot what it was like to live under a dark spirit of lies, slander and accusation.
She never forgot the fear, ambition and terror of the party members. Oh how our neighbors and colleagues proudly wore their red star. They wore the sign of their fallen master like a badge of courage! Yet they lacked any courage. They lacked chests.

Here, we are again.


We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.

Now there is a good book!

C.S. Lewis’ The Abolition of Man.

Have you read it?”

Sarah unhappily sipped on her iced venti caramel latte. She glanced at her candy apple red iPad. 6 new email.
She glanced at the first email.
DHS Sector 3 Battalion 3 Nimrod Protocol
Does he check out?

As she reviewed email on her iPad, Sarah fidgeted with the key to her company car – a sleek BMW X6.
The key to her car was a source of decisive inspiration for her- especially her lucky key ring charm. A black cat of Swarovski crystals.
She so loved how it sparkled!
Sarah was working things out in her head.
How do I get him to understand, she wondered to herself.
The Christians must be stopped before they start a civil war. They needed to be detained. The radicals. The Christians that believe Jesus is the Son of God, who was supposedly resurrected and who will supposedly come again.
Out of the corner of her eye, Sarah noticed a tall, dark and handsome man nod to her from a nearby table. He looked like Apollo – the god of war. He was hot.
“You’re hot”, he texted to her.
She texted back.
Me too! I think so too. Here’s my number. Call me, maybe. 😛
“I’ll carry your world…” he texted back.

Sarah rolled her eyes and winked at Mister Tall, Dark and Handsome.
Then she slid a button forward on the side of her iPad and the monitor became a mirror. She checked her look and smiled. Her azure blue lip gloss was killer. Dangerous. Sexy. Forbidden Fruit.
I am that hot… she replied with a grin.

The black bearded man lit a hand-rolled cigarette. The smoke was fragrant. Notes of anise and chocolate reminded her of childhood and Sundays. Sarah played with a lock of her black hair and impatiently turned her attention back to the suspect.
“But don’t you see – it’s prophetic. Christians can’t be trusted. They’re the problem. They’re standing in the way of progress. The Christian threat to our nation’s peace and security can not be ignored.
The Christians – they want to swallow us up and force our culture to fit their vision. They have no right to protest against the will of the State. The will of progress!
They must be rounded up,” she blurted out.
The facts and, obviously, the final solution was incontrovertible. He’d get it, she hoped.
She sucked on her latte and savored the sweet caramel.
“Prophecy belongs to the Lord. False prophecy, on the other hand is the territory of demons and ruthless ambition,” the man replied – interrupting Sarah’s thoughts.
“Who is trying to swallow who? Who is trying to force who’s culture to fit who’s vision?
Why are the intellectuals being rounded up? Why men and women of conscience and moral character?
You know; they did that in the old country. But the Communists could not contain the human heart.
Because the human heart longs for eternity and deliverance!
The human spirit hungers for the beautiful, the good and the true. It cries out for deliverance from evil. It cries out to God – who is the only one that can save us…”
Sarah rolled her eyes.
There he goes again, she thought to herself.
Yet another speech to the invisible but presumably doting Noble Prize committee.
The black bearded man paused and took a gulp of hot espresso. Then he continued.
“If I am the problem. If we are the problem…
Or if Christians are the problem and the problem is not the compromised wealth, dignity and welfare of the nation, then the so-called problem will be resolved in reconciliation, dialogue and love.
Your detention camps are not a solution.
They are the factories of evil, houses of horrors and, ultimately, a curse upon the nation!
Wars, unjust laws, and prolonged detentions – these are never the instruments of peace but our self-defeat. A defeat of our humanity. All of us.
These instruments of evil must be protested.”
Sarah expected a grand quote about now. It was a burden she had long ago become accustomed to suffer.
“I remember the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. It was during his mountain top speech when he had spoke these words.

Somewhere I read that the greatness of America is the right to protest for rights.”

“No!” Sarah replied.
“America is great, because we make it great. Because we’re taking out the trash!”
She was shocked and stunned by his outrageous, dissident and dangerous reply.
Professor Celan was a lost cause, she thought to herself.
“Don’t tell me you’ve converted to Christianity!?” she exclaimed.
In her pocket, she secretly texted her office. It was automatic, practiced, unapologetic, and professional.
Pick up the dissident.
The GPS location and street address for the Starbucks was included with her text message. A white van was dispatched and would arrive at the destination in five minutes.
“No, no. I remain a Jew but I will stand by my Christian brother and sister,” he replied with a gentle, warm smile.
“We are, all of us, members of the same human family. One family.
Remember these words – of all the words I have asked you to reflect upon.
Because these words may unlock your heart. Not today but someday. These words will help deliver you from hate.
Chaplin spoke them in his film, The Great Dictator.
Only the unloved hate; the unloved and the unnatural.”

Tears welled up in the blue eyes of the black bearded, Russian American immigrant. But through the salty tears, a light shone bright in the eyes of Paul Celan, Harry Tuchman Levin Professor of Literature and Professor of Poetry at Harvard’s School of Literature and History.


“I forgive you, Sarah. And before your friends come to detain me without reasonable cause or by due process of law, I need to bless you, my dear princess.

There’s not much time, is there?”

The black bearded man stood up, raised his open hand and blessed his daughter with an ancient Jewish blessing.

“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace…”

What’s up with the Jesus freak? Want me to take care of that… texted Mr. Tall Dark and Handsome.

Stan Faryna
4 July 2014
Fairfax, Virginia



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