Animated Faith Zone - Children's Story Book -
☞ Serenity and the Treasury of the King
The castle stood just beyond the break of trees lining the edge of the Forest of Dreams. If she had opened her eyes and looked through the shadowy vines, the girl would have seen the pristine spires jutting skyward. The gurgling stream whispered at her feet, and the rose petals swirled past her face as the wind swept them off the bushes. The map Jessica clutched in her hand showed that the trees should be opening up soon, leaving a path to the castle of the King.
She and Serenity had planned to make the trip together, because they had heard that the King was kindly, welcoming guests from all over the countryside. They hoped to see his treasury that was rumored to be full. They imagined a wealth of jewels: rubies, emeralds, diamonds, and blue sapphires. But, Serenity had disappeared one afternoon in the early days of Winter. Jessica had waited around miserably for Serenity to return, and had finally taken up the map herself, hoping to find her way alone to the palace of King Joshua before mid-afternoon. Now the sun was high in the sky, and she was uncertain of any point on the map, and no path was in sight.
Tucking the map into her pocket, she kneeled beside the stream and tasted the cool water. It was after she drank the water that she realized how weary she had grown from her hours of walking. She decided she would just rest her feet here beneath this towering tree. While she
leaned quietly against the trunk, she began to drift off to sleep, but was soon awakened by a voice calling her name, "Jessica!" Leaping to her feet in surprise she saw a boy about her own age, with dark hair and skin, smiling at her, but his skin was almost transparent so that she could see the foliage through him. His feet didn't seem to even be touching the ground. He appeared to almost hover just a few feet away.
"Wh...who are you?" She stammered frightfully.
"Do not be afraid. My name is Angel, and I am a herald of the King."
Jessica was quite surprised at a name like Angel, but before she could ask anything more, he handed her a piece of paper rolled up, and said quietly, "I can see you are lost. Take this message and you will soon find your way." Then as she looked down at the paper and back up, she saw that he was gone, just like that!
Yea, the sparrow has found a house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even your altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God. Psalms 84:3
She read these words scrawled in a beautiful hand on the unrolled scroll. "What could it mean?" She mused over the strange words. Had Angel said that he was a herald...a messenger of the King? Birds? A swallow? At that moment a pretty brown tailed bird fluttered past and lighted in the branches of a tree across the stream. Lifting her gaze to follow its flight to the nest, she saw the spires of the castle glistening in the quickly descending evening sun. "That's it!" She exclaimed.
She hurriedly rolled up the little message and ran to a spot where she could easily cross the stream. Then, wading across, she reached the other side, and headed in the direction of the spires of the castle. Before long, she reached the clearing of trees and found the little pathway to the edge of the forest. Standing there in silence for a few minutes, she pondered the idea that she wasn't sure if she should just barge right up to the castle gates. Hadn't Angel as much as given her an invitation...a message from the King? She turned the scroll over in her hand, unrolling it again to re-read the words. "No, it couldn't be!" She cried aloud. But it was true. The words on the scroll had changed. The message now read:
With gladness and rejoicing shall they
be brought: they shall enter into the
king's palace. Psalms 45:15
Jessica could see that this was no ordinary King, one who sent heralds that hovered and disappeared; with messages that made themselves new each time they were read. Yes, this King must be King over everything she saw before her. How was she to greet a King like this? "Well then!" She exclaimed. Wasn't this message the very words of the King? And so she began to sing.
"Lift up your heads, O gates;
and be lifted up, everlasting doors...
Who is this King of glory?
A LORD strong and mighty?
A LORD mighty in battle?
Lift up your heads, O gates;
Even lift them up, everlasting doors;
May I come in?
Who is this King of glory?"
As Jessica finished her song, she saw a man approaching her from the castle. And, he was smiling. "Could this be King Joshua," she wondered aloud?
"Hello there! I heard you singing those beautiful words. Come, and I will take you to see the King of glory."
"Aren't you the King, then?" Jessica asked.
"Oh, certainly not! I am the Gate Keeper. Jeremy is my name!" And with this he shook her hand in welcome. "Come with me, and I will lead you to the King." When Jessica gasped in surprise, he asked, "You are here to meet the King, I presume? I heard you singing about him, you know?"
"Yes, sure. But, will he see me right this minute?"
"The King is always ready to speak with his dear children, and he considers all to be his own."
"Well, then. Let's go now. Will I see his treasury, too? I've heard so much about it!"
Jeremy looked at her for a long moment, then he nodded his head
"Most certainly! You will see the King's treasury. And. I am sure he will have a gift for you." This was more than Jessica could have hoped. Excitedly she ran, trying to keep up with Jeremy's long strides. Then she reached the gates. Luckily Jeremy was quite tall, and could easily swing the gates open, though they were well over seven feet high.
She followed him across the courtyard, where she saw every imaginable sort of bird flying around the King's beautiful gardens. Then they came to the massive doors. Jeremy opened them just as quickly, and before she knew what to make of it all, she found herself ushered into the great throne room, before the king himself. At a loss for words suddenly, she just stood there before the King.
"The king's daughter is all glorious within. Her clothing is of wrought gold." These words from the King were followed with a smile. Jessica, surprised at his words, looked down at her clothes, which were quite
disheveled from the journey through the woods, and definitely not made out of gold. But, not knowing what to say, she just looked at him again.
"You are fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into your lips: therefore God has blessed you forever."
"Oh, I see!" Jessica exclaimed. "You heard me singing?"
"Why, yes, little one," laughed the King heartily, I heard you singing. So shall the King greatly desire your beauty: for he is your Lord; and you worship him."
With these words, King Joshua stepped down from his throne and held out his hand to Jessica. She took his hand in silence and followed him, too excited for words. They strode together down the long corridor into the inner chamber of the throne room. There before her eyes Jessica saw the most beautiful treasure, and the room was filled with amazing
things. Reaching into one of the treasure chests, the King pulled out a cup, with the word LOVE inscribed across the brim, and handed it to Jessica. She held the cup close to her heart and exclaimed, "Thank you King of Glory!"
"Call me Joshua. But, here is more." And reaching for a golden robe, he wrapped it around her shoulders. Looking in surprise at the beautiful robe, she saw words were stiched into the seams.
" For the LORD takes pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation." Psalms 149:4
"Oh, it"s marvelous! Thank you!"
Before Jessica could finish these words, she heard someone coming into the chamber with them. Looking around, there was Jeremy, the Gate keeper with her friend Serenity. Angel was with them, too. Jessica ran to Serenity, hugging her, and asking questions all at once. "Serenity, how long have you been here? How did you ever find the King?" Serenity smiled, as she put her arms around her friend. Then looking at the King, she answered.
"He will show me the path of life: in his presence is fulness of joy; at his right hand there are pleasures for evermore."
The Song of Jessica was adapted from Psalm 24:7-10.
The King's words came from Psalm 45.
Serenity's answer is adapted from Psalms16:11
I wrote the story as an allegory about prayer and finding treasure in the presence of King Jesus. VH