3. The Scroll

The next day Tiki, Azaliah, and some of Tiki’s family members decided to visit the park they frequented when in Osaka and have lunch. Afterwards Tiki and her brother started a game of soccer. Azaliah was engrossed in the soccer match when she heard a faint shuffling behind her. 

“Hi ‘My friends call me Zay.’” Kenji smiled.

“Oh, hi. Kenji right? Small world.”

“Yes, but just Kenji.”

“Of course” Azaliah smiled. “Do you live around here?”

“Sure.” He took a seat across from Azaliah.

“Sure? Is that a yes you live here or a no you don’t live here?”

“Let’s just say I am from the area.”

“Okay. So what brings you here to the park?”

“I’m here to deliver a message.” Kenji pulled out a beautifully designed black, gold, and white rectangle box and places it before Azaliah.

“Is that for me?”

“Yes Paga’.”

“What does that even mean?! Wait. Were you the one who sent me those creepy text messages at the airport? Are you stalking me?” Azaliah looked around alarmed.

“Hey Kenji!” yelled Tiki. “You going to play or what?”

“I’ll be there in a sec!” Looking back at Azaliah Kenji's deep brown eyes contained such respect she wondered if it was all for her. 

“Who are you.” Azaliah demanded.

“I am a friend and yes, this box is for you. Don’t skip any lines. Not even one word. There are lives that depend on it.” Kenji got up and walked over to the soccer match. He stopped and looked over his shoulder he added, “Your life depends on it.”

In the dim light of Azaliah’s guest bedroom she pulled out the long black, gold, and white ornate box and wondered what was inside. When she ran her hand over the intricate designs she marveled at its beauty. How many other people had received this same box she thought?  As she pondered this she found a small inscription on the edge of the lid by the latch. It read, “For they who are called.”

Azaliah blew out a shaky breath and with unsteady hands she opened the latch. Inside there was a long blood red velvet bag. As she picked up the bag she turned it on its side and slid out the contents. It was a scroll. It looked worn around the edges yet the paper was in excellent condition. The scroll smelled of sandalwood and was very smooth to the touch. Azaliah turned the scroll and marveled at its beauty. She could see there was writing on the inside. Remembering the warning Kenji gave her Azaliah shut and locked her door and sat down with the scroll in front of her. 

Breaking the scroll’s white wax seal, she began to read:

A long time ago during the times of gladiators and myths God our Father called forth human warriors to fight alongside angels for humanity. Putting on the full armor of God and carrying His anointing these warriors waged tremendous war on the kingdom of darkness. The Paga’ warrior was both loathed and feared by the enemy’s army. God gave great abilities to the warriors specific to his or her call. Some were given the ability to speak in many languages, some the ability to see into the past and future. Some warriors could hear the secret whisperings of the heart, while others could discern the truth from a lie. There were many more gifts given by Abba Father but all the warriors were blessed with many human years. Some have been known to live up to 200 years.

Young Azaliah, you have been called and chosen to be God’s Paga’ warrior. You have been called to join the ranks of God’s human warriors to continue to wage war on the kingdom of darkness for humanity. This walk isn’t easy or glamorous and can be lonely at times. It is also victorious, fulfilling, and truly blessed. There is a lot for you to learn young Paga’. Go to the place where you received this scroll. I'll be waiting for you there.

~Sensei Kyoto

Azaliah, laying the scroll down on her bed, closed her eyes and began to pray:

“Father God, in the name of Jesus, if this is you please settle my heart and give me a peace that passes all understanding in Jesus name Amen.” When Azaliah opened her eyes there was a text message waiting for her. It was from one of her good friends Lila.

"Hi Azaliah!  I was listening to my Podcast and you came to my mind. I know breaking up with Mekhi was tough but you'll make it. You're a fighter and you have always bounced back from whatever you've gone through. So don't stop fighting. You found God right? I bet you can ask him for his strength and he would give you that and more. Take care and I hope to see you soon!"

The words on the screen took Azaliah’s breath away and as she accepted the call in her heart she knew her life had changed forever.