The Train to Nowhere

Author: Cindy Lee — Host: Natty AndersonPosted on: April 14, 2024

Unlocked: Daily Devotions for Teens
The Train to Nowhere

READ: PSALM 36:5-9; 2 CORINTHIANS 7:8-13

“Made it. I’m free!” Sultan yelled, jumping on the train as the doors bleeped shut behind him. Where is everyone? He thought, sitting in the empty carriage, a knot of dread weaving itself inside him. Is this the right train?

“Tickets,” the guard’s rasping voice called. With trembling hands, Sultan handed over the ticket, watching in horror as the destination letters changed to Nowhere. Staring out of his dark, empty eyes the ticket collector grinned. “You’re on the right track, to Nowhere” he laughed, handing the ticket back before striding away.

Wiping the prickling sweat from his forehead, sadness physically dragged Sultan down. Past mistakes flashed before his eyes. “You’re wasting your life. They aren’t your true friends.” Mom’s words haunted him. “I wish your grandpa was still here. He’d know what to say.”

Pushing himself up with his last remaining dregs of strength, Sultan stumbled along the carriages as the train hurtled along. Nothing. The ticket collector had vanished. If only you were alive Grandpa, Sultan thought. I miss you, your faith, your Bible stories and adventures. When you died, it felt like I lost my trust in God. I don’t know if I even believe anymore.

Sliding to the floor, Sultan shuddered, recalling how he’d flung Grandpa’s well-worn Bible in his closet. He felt an ache in his stomach. Is it too late?

“Help!” His plea was a strangled whisper. “Father, Jesus. My grandpa loved you. Please help me trust You again. I’m so sorry. Please forgive me.” Tears poured down his face. His eyes stung and every bone ached.

A glimmer of light appeared, glowing brighter and brighter until it dazzled. A loving voice cried out, “Sultan, weep no more. You are my precious, beloved child, and my Son Jesus died for you so you could be cleansed of sin and brought into relationship with us. We have not forgotten you. We have not abandoned you. We see your sorrow, your pain. We will help you trust in us, and we will heal you.”

Sultan nodded, choking on the words. “I-I believe,” he cried out. The heaviness lifted. He could feel peace beginning to heal his brokenness. Sultan stood up. The train was buzzing with the chatter of people. Glancing at his ticket, his destination had changed to Hope. • Cindy Lee

• Have you ever felt like Sultan in this story? Sometimes, when we experience a tragedy or life-changing event, it can make us question our beliefs or make us angry with God. But the truth is, once you become a Christian, nothing can ever separate you from Jesus’s love (Romans 8:38-39). We live in an imperfect world, but Jesus has restored our broken relationship with God through His death and resurrection. And one day, Jesus will return and restore the heavens and the earth—then death and sorrow and pain will be gone forever (Revelation 21:1-5). As we wait for this glorious day, Christians don’t need to be afraid of losing our faith. Faith is a gift from God, one He gives generously (Ephesians 2:8-9; 2 Peter 1:1; Philippians 1:29; Acts 3:16). No matter what, you can share all your worries, your anger, your hurt, and your fears with Jesus, the One who died for you and loves you dearly. Consider taking a moment to talk to Him about whatever is on your mind.

• If you’ve never put your trust in Jesus and you want to know more, check out our “Know Jesus” page.

• Who are trusted Christians in your life you can be open and honest with about your struggles? How could you encourage each other, pray for each other, and point each other to Scripture, especially in hard times?

When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your unfailing love, Lord, supported me. Psalm 94:18 (NIV)