Caleb's Choice

by Deanna Barnes based on 2 Kings 2:23-24

"Micah!" Caleb called. "It's time to work in the field."

"I'm tired," Micah yawned. "I stayed up too late last night. But I got five more guys to join my gang. You'd better hurry up and join. You're gonna miss the fun."

"Fun?" Caleb wrinkled his nose at his big brother. "I don't think it's fun to cause trouble."

"Ha! You're just a kid."

Caleb looked at his short legs. Will I ever be tall like Micah?

Later that day, Caleb heard people talking as they walked by.

"Did you hear about Elisha?" one man said.

"Yes," another man answered. "He's our new prophet."

"Elisha is a devoted man of God," one of the men explained. "He may be passing by today!"

Caleb took off running. "Micah! Micah!" he yelled.

"What are you so excited about?" Micah frowned.

"Elisha is passing by today!"

"Who?"

"The prophet! Don't you want to see him?"

"Not really," Micah said.

"But he serves God with all of his heart."

"So?" Micah shrugged. "I'm busy. I'm sneaking over to the forest with my friends."

"The forest!" Caleb's eyes opened wide. "It's not safe without an adult."

"Yeah . . . but when you grow up, you'll understand." Micah sneered. "Now, get back to work."

Caleb pulled weeds until the sun was high in the sky. Then he heard footsteps. He saw Micah's friends running through the gate. They headed toward the forest.

Should I go with them? I'm almost big enough. Caleb started for the gate. Then he yelled, "Stop! Come back! It's not safe!"

"Be quiet, baby brother!" Micah snarled. "You're just a scaredy-cat!"

Caleb heard Micah's friends laughing.

Just then, a bald man walked by. He walked tall and straight. 

"It's Elisha!" Caleb whispered. "He serves the living God."

Micah and his friends shouted at the prophet as he climbed the hill. "Go up, you bald head! Go up, you bald head!"

The prophet looked at the boys, stretched his hands into the air and continued walking. The boys followed him toward the forest.

Caleb turned away, embarrassed. How could Micah be so mean to God's prophet?

Later Micah came limping through the gate.

"Help me!" he moaned.

"What happened?"

"Bears!" Micah said. Scratches covered Micah's arms and legs. "Owww! We should not have made fun of God's prophet."

Caleb helped his brother walk home.

Then Caleb thought about Elisha walking tall and straight. When I grow up, Caleb thought, I don't want to cause trouble. I want to serve God with all of my heart, just like Elisha.

This article originally appeared in the July 2010 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse Jr. magazine. Copyright © 2010 Deanna Barnes. Used by permission. Illustration © David Hohn.