In the dark entrance of a secluded cave, I sit and ponder on how I will survive. My only light comes from a small fire which took me about two hours to get started from clicking two flint stones together. If not for the small fire, I would be very cold due to the fact that caves stay the same temperature all year. My clothes are damp from the moist air of the cave.
This all started when my house burnt down leaving me with no place to live. I no longer have a job because I made a living on the computer, which burnt with the house. My car also went up in flames in the garage attached to the burning house. So, here I am, struggling to start all over again. That terrible night I was lucky enough to still be dressed and on my way out of the engulfed house, I grabbed a pocket sized Bible off of the coffee table.
Sitting by the fire, I take the small, white Bible out of my pocket. The Bible had Holy Bible printed in gold letters across the front cover. As I flip through the thin pages, I wonder what made me grab the Bible instead of something with cash value. Then, I come upon a book in the Bible that tells of a man that lost all he had. It goes on to tell how God helped him out of his despair. At this moment, I began to realize why my only possession was a Bible. I would soon realize that it has always been the most important possession I have ever had.
As I began to read more, it took my mind off of where I was and how I came to be there. Most importantly, it gave me a sense of hope that I would make it in this desolate world on my own. Story after story, I read. The more I read, the more I came to know what I had to do in order to survive. Answers flowed from that book into my reality, as if I was having a conversation with someone about what to do next. I soon fell into a deep sleep from exhaustion and hunger.
The next morning I awake to the sound of my stomach growling. I knew that I must eat. The season was between spring and fall. There was plenty wild vegetation; I just had to find it. I got up and left the caving on my first hunt for food in the wilderness.
Walking along I heard a squirrel in the tree above me. I looked up and to my surprise; I had found food with the help of a squirrel. I saw something that I had once heard were “opossum grapes”. I knew that they were good to eat because I had eaten them when I was a child. I climbed the tree until I could reach the grapes; I pulled out the tail end of my shirt, and began stuffing it full of grapes to take with me. By the time I got back to the cave, I had already eaten over half of them.
I knew that I would have to have more that to eat, so I went out to find an object that I could be used to spear a fish with. As I was walking, I stepped on a broken beer bottle. Immediately, I realized that I could use the broken glass to stab a fish. I hurried down to the creek in the bottom of the valley. I sat for a long time try to figure out how I would get close enough to fish to stab it with the glass.
Then, I saw a shallow pool of water filled with branches, grass, and FISH! I stooped down over a rock by the shallow pool and quietly waited for my chance to strike. Just when the fish were getting use to my presence, I struck! I managed to wound a small but big enough to eat fish. I was so proud of myself. I knew that I would need a couple more, so I sat and waited to strike again. After a few hours I had four fish.
On my way back to the cave, I gathered some green branches to use as roasting sticks for my soon to be dinner. I couldn’t wait to taste them; I hurried back and quickly started a fire. I used the edge of the glass to cut the fishes’ heads and tails off. I pilled back their scaly skin and rinsed them with water that I had carried from the creek in the end of the broken beer bottle. Soon, they were roasting over open flam on green but sturdy sticks.
That night I ate all four of the fish and the rest of the grapes that I gathered earlier that morning. With my belly full and my body warm, I took out my Bible and began to read again. Story after story, words flowed form the pages into my soul.
The next morning, I realized that I was beginning to smell a little stout. I walked down stream a little way from the fish pool to bath. I took my clothes off and scrubbed them on a rock, rung them out, and hung them on a tree branch to dry. Then, it was time to bath myself. Although I did not have any soap. I could still scrub my body and rinse my hair. I waded around awhile in the water trying to give my clothes a little time to dry. Once they were dry, I put them back on and headed back to the cave.
That day, I knew I needed to go to town for some supplies, which I planned to get out of the trash. As I drew closer to town, I stopped and took the Bible from my pocket. I knelt down on my knees with the Bible in my hands, and, I began to pray. The night before, I read that if you ask, you shall receive. So, I was asking God to deliver me from this desperate situation.
When I arrived at the edge of town, I went into the local laundry mat to use the restroom. After using the restroom, I went back out into the laundry mat. I walked over to the chairs lined up against the wall and sat down to rest from my long walk into town. In the magazine next to me on a table, I found a perfume sample. I picked up the sample and rubbed it all over my clothes to make them smell more presentable.
On the wall opposite of where I was sitting, I saw a bulletin board full of things for sale and help wanted signs. I walked over to the board and began to read. There on a piece of tattered paper were the words, “HOUSE KEEPER WANTED” written in red marker.
I tore the paper down from the board and set out to find the address that was printed at the bottom of the paper. Finally, I came upon an immaculate three-story house, whose address fit the one on the paper. There were very expensive cars parked in the circle drive. Then, I began to wonder why someone with so much money would post a help wanted sign in a run down laundry mat. Maybe, I had come to the wrong house. I looked at the paper carefully and then back at the address on the house; it was the right place.
Slowly I approached the large porch with tall white columns reaching to the roof of the three-story house. When I got to the door I hesitated in knocking. I was ashamed of my appearance. As I was adjusting my clothes before knocking on the door, the door suddenly opened.
I looked up to find a small, frail, old lady standing in the entrance of the large house. In a small, quiet voice she said, “You must be here for the house keeping position.”
I cleared my throat and replied, “Yes, Mam, I am. Has the position already been filed?”
She answered, “It sure hasn’t and if you would like, come in and I’ll fill you in on the duties you will be performing.” I followed her into the house, where we sat down. She began to explain, “Of course you will have to live here in the house and be on call 16 hours a day, Monday-Saturday. Sunday will be your only day off. I will pay you $400.00 a week and all of your meals will be provided.” I looked at her in disbelief. She was the answer to my prayers. Sweetly she looked at me and said, “ You will be wearing uniforms that I will provide for you.” As if she had noticed that I had not been well groomed in a few days and that I would need a bath and something clean to wear. Then she asked me, “Would you like to have the job?”
Immediately, I replied anxiously, “Yes, thank you so much! When do you need me to start?”
She quickly said, “You can start now if you like. Your room will be on the third floor. You can shower and put on your uniform. I’ll have the cook make you something to eat, then, you can get started.”
So, that’s how I went from having a home, to homeless, and having a home again. Sometimes things happen for a reason. I believe that the lesson in this is that no matter how small the possession, you should never forget the importance it may have in your life. The small Bible that I carried out of my burning house served as my lifeline to sanity, reality, and profound hope in my greatest time of need.
I’m a freshman in Arkansas. I love writting essays and short stories but I know that sometimes it is hard to come up with the time to write an essay. I was really pleased with this essay. I received an A for it and I hope that it will help someone.