Enjoy this custom Last Stand Chronicle short story by D.I. Telbat featuring Ron and Patti.
Mission Survival Training
A Last Stand Chronicle – Custom Fiction Short Story by D.I. Telbat
In the Northwest corner of Montana, where the Great Divide splits east from west, where mountain goats trek and grizzlies roam, Patti held up a handful of green scarves.
“You will each wear one of these on your trip,” she said to six college-age men and women who sat before her on the wooded hillside. Ron, her husband, sat on a stump to her left, a Bible in his lap. “By these scarves, you will know your friends from your foes. The end of each scarf is knitted with half of a white cross. Match it with your foreign contact, and you’ll know you’re in Christian company, even though you won’t know the local language.”
“Many of the mountain skills we’ve taught this week was review for you,” Ron said as Patti passed out the scarves to their pupils. She and Ron wore their own scarves. “More than anything, we were asked to instill some of these basic techniques into your outdoor arsenal so you can confidently serve God wherever you go.”
“The Lord has raised each of you up in Him for these missions,” Patti continued. She gazed into each face in turn, hoping to remember every detail of this day. “Do what you’ve been called to do, then come home.”
After a week of training, the six youths picked up their backpacks and prepared to depart. They weren’t only leaving the mountain camp Ron and Patti had set up for their outdoor lessons; the six were also separating, leaving one another for their various callings.
Patti stood to one side as the six embraced and said their final words. If Ron and Patti had not lived full lives already, much of it in the backcountry, they would have accompanied these brave souls.
Two were going to Bhutan, whose mountain villages treated Christians like second-class citizens.
Another couple felt called to the rugged northeast corner of North Korea, where they would smuggle Christians and materials in and out of the country, working with Chinese partners.
The last two were going to the Zargos Mountains of Iran, where the Bible was illegal, but a printing press was about to be installed.
Patti waved goodbye as the six drove away in their vehicles. They were going straight to the airport.
“Do you think we helped them?” Patti asked Ron as they began to take down the wall tent.
“Survival skills like starting fires without matches and how to identify edible mountain plants seems slight in the face of where they’re headed.”
“We can’t know fully what they’ll face,” Ron said. He held out one end of his own green scarf. Patti used hers to complete the knitted, white cross. “It was our job to equip them fully. They’re in God’s hands now.”
“Those are the best hands I know.” Patti smiled peacefully, then looked after the departing vehicles. They were out of sight now. She was overjoyed that she and Ron had been asked to take part in the youths’ preparations, but it was a bittersweet moment.
Some of those six wouldn’t return. But that was in God’s hands as well.
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