Jacqueline and Sierra had been friends since elementary school. They walked home together everyday. They played together, ate lunch together, sat next to each other in class, even spent the night at each other’s house. They were literally inseparable. As they got older, they started to realize they each had different outlooks on life. It was their sophomore year of high school, and Jacqueline started to notice a major change in Sierra’s attitude towards her. Jacqueline was always the bookworm, while Sierra on the other hand was the rebel. Jacqueline was always the one to bail Sierra out of countless situations. No matter how much trouble Sierra had caused, Jacqueline remained a loyal friend to her.
One day while walking to class, Jacqueline noticed Sierra talking to Charlotte. She never really cared for Charlotte and couldn’t understand why Sierra would want to hang around her. Charlotte was known as the “easy” one at school and had been with almost every guy on the football team. She was about to approach the two girls when she was pulled away by Janet, a classmate of hers. “Hey Jackie, wait up!” she yelled. She turned around to see Janet running towards her wildly waiving papers. “Whoa Janet! What’s the big hurry?” “They posted the parts for the play.” she replied with excitement. “Are you kidding me let’s go!” she squealed as she grabbed Janet’s hand and rushed down the hall. Janet, Charlotte, Jacqueline, and Sierra all had drama class together. Their teacher, Mrs. Wright had announced that the school play would be Romeo and Juliet. Each of the girls were dying to get the part of Juliet. Just before she got to the billboard with names, she yelled for Sierra, “Hey SiSi, c’mon. They posted the parts for the school play!” She waited for Sierra to catch up before they all ran towards the billboard. By the time they got there, the plethora of people surrounding the billboard made it impossible to see who got which part. When she was able to make her way up to the billboard, she started to feel the sting of eyes burning a hole through her back. She turned around to see a lot of envious faces ripping her to shreds. “What’s wrong with everyone?” Janet whispered. “I’m not sure. I haven’t done anything.” “Oh yes you did! You got the lead part!” Janet shouted. Jacqueline turned her head in disbelief. She couldn’t believe she had gotten the part as Juliet. The two girls jumped up and down with glee. That was soon interrupted by her friend, “I hope you’re happy. Stealing my part.” Sierra said with disdain. “Um excuse me, your part? I don’t think so sweetie. I earned that part fair and square.” she replied sternly. Just as Sierra was about to step to Jacqueline, Janet jumped in between the two. “First of SiSi you need to chill alright. Jacqueline has been more than good to you. She’s helped you out more situations than you can count on your hand. The least you could do is be happy for her.” “I don’t think I was talking to you.” “But, I’m talking to you. Back off!” she stated firmly. Sierra backed down and smirked. “You’ll regret this.” she said in a low but cold tone. Jacqueline felt a wave a heat run through her body. She couldn’t understand what she had done to make her friend so angry at her.
Later that evening, while Jacqueline was cleaning out her closet, she found an old picture of her and Sierra. She stared at the picture and felt a small grin form at the corner of her lips. So many fun times and memories they shared together. She thought back on the one time that Sierra had lost her virginity and thought she was pregnant. “Oh my God Jackie! My mom is going to kill me if she finds out.” she said. “SiSi calm down. Remember what I told you. When it gets to this point, just pray. Slow your breathing and pray. God doesn’t answer worried prayers. He answers honest and sincere prayers.” “Jackie, this is no time for praying! How am I supposed to pray. I’m only 12 Jackie!” she fussed. “Sierra, yelling at me is not going to solve your problems. Calm down, take a moment, and breath.” she replied. Defeated, Sierra sat back in her chair and breathed. She breathed heavy slow breaths. “You feel it now?” “Yes, I feel it.” “Great. That’s how you are supposed to feel. Calm and relaxed. My mom always told me if you are going to stress about it then don’t pray. If you are going to pray, then don’t stress. Everything will be alright. Let’s bow our heads and pray.”
Jacqueline was brought up with heavy Christian values, and practically spent every waking moment with her head in the bible. She read her bible so much, that she could recite scriptures and verses with her eyes closed. She tried to get Sierra into the bible heavy as well, and for a while she though she had. She would come over every day, and the girls would practice scriptures and apply them to certain situations that occurred in their every day life. They prayed before they parted ways, and would pray in the morning when they met up for school. That all changed when they started high school. Sierra started seeing how much attention all the popular girls were getting from the boys, and she craved it. Jacqueline tried her best to keep her on the right path and away from the tumultuous world of boys and hormones. It was to no avail. When Sierra met Charlotte, everything went downhill from there. She started ignoring Jacqueline. Turning her nose up at everything she did, criticizing her for her strong Christian beliefs. She even went so far as to spread a rumor about the girl being a freak and that she was easy to get with. That rumor was quickly put to rest, when word got out that she was still a virgin and hadn’t seen any part of a man except his face and hands. Her mother warned her to cut ties with Sierra, but she couldn’t. That was her friend. As a matter of fact, besides Janet and Claire, Sierra was really the only other friend she had. She had a great bond with Janet and Claire, but not like Sierra. They hadn’t been through the things that she and Sierra had. They hadn’t grown up together. They didn’t have the same history. She could hear her mom’s voice now, “Girl let me tell you something, anyone who lies on you is not your friend. Remember Lucifer was once and angel. He was cast out of heaven for trying to overthrow God’s authority. I’m not saying compare yourself to God, but the lies Lucifer told just to get people to listen to him instead of God, is what we need to pay attention to.”
Jacqueline put the picture on her dresser and continued to clean out her closet. Once she was finished organizing the shoes, she glanced over at the clock. “Oh Lord, I’m going to be late for bible study.” she stated. She hoped up off the floor and quickly straightened her clothes. She gave herself a quick once over in the mirror before grabbing her bible and house key and rushing out the door. “Jackie!” her mother called out to her. “Yes mama?” “You’re forgetting your jacket. It’s cold out here.” She hadn’t noticed the sudden temperature change before she rushed out the door. “Sorry mama.” she said as she ran back to grab it. “Love you mama. I’ll be back after bible study.” she replied and rushed down the street.
As she approached the corner where she and Sierra usually met, she noticed an usually large group of people standing around. Jacqueline wasn’t the kind of person who was drawn to large crowds, but for some reason, this particular crowd grabbed her attention. As she got closer and closer, she saw what appeared to be a young boy laying motionless in the street. She eased her way through the crowd and noticed Stacy standing on the other side. She made her way over to where she was “Hey Stacy, what’s going on?” “Remember Jackson, the little Jewish boy in art class?” “Yea, he was shot a few minutes ago.” “Oh my Lord. Why?” “For being Jewish.” “Stacy, you can’t be serious.” “Oh no Jackie, I’m as serious as they come.” “How do you kill someone for being Jewish? That’s no reason to die!” she shot back. “Jackie I know that. Heck, I’m Jewish, but do you think I want to end up like him?” “Stacy that’s no reason to hide your religion. You believe in what you believe in and no one can take that away from you.” “Well, they took it from Jackson.” “Yea, and whoever did it was a coward. No one deserves to be martyred because your beliefs are different. That’s preposterous!” she said with deep disdain. As the police cars approached the scene, the crowd began to dissipate, and peopled were pushed back out of the street. As one detective approached the body, Jacqueline noticed the look of surprise on his face. She studied him for minute. The look on his face perplexed her. “He’s a detective, why would he be surprised to see a dead body. I mean, hasn’t he seen hundreds of them?” she thought. After a few moments, the detective said, “He’s Jewish. He’s the fourth one this week.” “You thinking hate crime?” the other detective asked. “Possibly. Someone is going on their own genocide spree.” “This is a shame. You can’t even have your own faith and belief without someone trying to impose their faith and beliefs on you. All because this kid is Jewish he gets killed. Whatever happened to freedom of religion in this country?”
I know there are all sorts of faiths, beliefs, and religions in this country. Although a Jewish boy was killed, don’t take offense to this. This was written to shed light on all of the hatred that is going on in the world today. So much killing because people have different beliefs. Let no one take your faith or belief away from you. It is your right and your choice. No one should be punished for being different.
May we continue to pray for this world and the people in it. God Bless. https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/martyr/