A New Beginning

I wanted to name this chapter from Son of Jesse “A New Hope,” but obviously George Lucas got to that title before I could.

“A New Beginning” is inspired by I Samuel 16. I actually conflated many parts of the O.T. into this chapter. Not only does Samuel anoint David at the end, but I included a scene where David fights a bear and three lions with his sling. Throughout the chapter, David also composes Psalms 23, the last verse being uttered as Samuel finishes pouring the oil from the horn over his head.

This chapter is emotional (for me, at least), and I can’t put my finger exactly on why this is the case. It could be David’s purity of heart and knowing that the life before him will be full of heartbreak and sorrow. It could be the composition of Psalm 23–one of the most comforting passages ever written in the history of civilization. It could be God fulfilling a promise to his people (and in particular, Samuel) that a king will arrive who will lead Israel out of the darkness of Judges and the reign of Saul. Whenever promises are kept in literature and film, I have a visceral response.

I’m very proud of a “A New Beginning.” This chapter, along with a chapter from Son of Jesse entitled “That Which Lies Between” and a short story I wrote entitled “Gerasenes,” are works I feel privileged to have written. It can definitely be argued that another author could have written them better, but I believe the ideas and themes contained within each story are important.

Here’s a passage from the end of “A New Beginning”:

The old man continued looking intensely at the boy. “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life.”

The boy returned his stare and within him rushed a flood of passion. It came unexpectedly as if he was suddenly thrust into the cool brook near the land he wanted to build a home and family. Near the clump of trees grown on top of the green hill, holding up the sky.

The water washed over him and through him, cleaning his soul and making his burden light. It happened in an instant and he knew from that moment forward he would never live in Bethlehem his whole life. He knew there would be no peace.

“And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever,” the boy said.

The old man’s eyes twinkled.

“Let us hope so.”

P.S. I am in the process of creating links on the Son of Jesse tab to the summaries/explanations I’ve written for each chapter. The first nine chapters have links, and I’ll create more as I write the posts. This will make for quick reference for those who want to know a little more about each chapter (i.e. The Scripture each idea came from… why I included certain scenes/characters…).

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