The Scattered Villagers

Isaiah feared for the people of his village. Several months ago, civil war had erupted in their country as a military group tried to wrest control of the government from the president and his supporters. The guerrillas had started ranging through the less populated areas and seizing resources from the villages and small towns. They had taken harsh measures against any who resisted them.

Today, word came to Isaiah that a group of guerrillas was headed their direction.

As the village elder, he hurried to the homes of the family heads and warned them that they needed to gather as many supplies as they could carry and go into the wilderness before the guerrillas arrived. They had no way to fight the militant group, for they carried advanced weapons. Their only defense would be to hide until the raiders passed.

Only some believed him. Others thought they could defend themselves if needed or that the stories were all exaggerated and no one was in any real danger. When Isaiah met those who heeded him in the center of the village two mornings later, disappointment and anxiety filled his chest. Only a few families had gathered. With sadness weighing at his heart, he led the way into the countryside.

They fled far enough that they could neither see nor hear what happened in the village. Several days later, Isaiah returned and found that some of his people had been killed, and the rest were missing. Those who had followed him returned to their homes, but Isaiah couldn’t do the same.

He ventured back out into the wilderness to find those who had disappeared.

Over the following weeks, Isaiah discovered the missing villagers hiding in the forests or hills in small groups. He invited them back to their homes. A few refused, too fearful to return, but many realized that they had failed to listen to him the first time and had suffered the consequences. This time, they heeded Isaiah and followed him back to their village, where they enjoyed a reunion with those who had listened to Isaiah’s warnings.

Photo by Kudra_Abdulaziz on

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