The force field thruster proves successful and soon our three friends find themselves back where they started from, in the driveway of Mark Lewis' home. Everything looks basically the same as it did when they left, except that Mark’s garage has expanded into a huge laboratory. Will, John and David are all there to greet them as they step down from the cylinder. In the doorway, they see Mark’s imposing figure, standing with his cigar and brandy snuffer, and with a very cynical look on his face. The others are like little children at a party.
"Welcome home, guys!"
"Yeah, it sure is good to see you three again, even if it is a bit premature, as far as finishing the mission."
"Anyway, you certainly did prove one thing--that time travel really does work."
"I can’t wait to hear all about your experiences."
By the time they get to the door, Mark has loosened up a Little. He sets the brandy on the stoop and gives the three a big hug. "I guess it is good to see you sons-of-a-guns, even if you did come back too soon."
Once inside, they briefly relate their experiences of the trip, while the others sit in awe. Finally, the time comes to be frank.
"It was a great experience,” admits Walt, "and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. To have actually been able to visit those other periods of history was thrilling, indeed. But the greatest thing that happened to us was something which could have happened right here and now, and can happen to you fellows also."
"What do you mean?"
"I’m talking about the experience of finding Jesus Christ as our personal savior."
"Oh, that," sighs Mark.
"Of course, that! Can’t you see from what we’ve been saying that the whole journey was sort of geared to this. I mean that apart from our efforts, it really seem as if an unseen hand--the hand of God, if you will--was guiding our destinations."
"That’s right," chimes in Daniel "At practically every stop the name of Jesus, or at least of God, came up somehow. Twice we were actually confronted with the message of the importance of faith in Jesus, first by the preacher in the old west, and then by the great reformer, Martin Luther."
"But all the stops," adds Kerry, "were somehow pointing us to the need for Christ if we would have realized it. The emptiness we saw in the lives of the men searching for gold, the discussion about the need for personal faith in an active God at Colonial Pennsylvania, and the futility of Da Vinci's humanistic philosophy; all of these should have caused us to think."
"And then," continues Walt, "When we got pulled forward to the future, it was to the start of the terrible time of tribulation which is coming upon this earth after all the believers are taken out. I’m sure glad that now I don’t have to go through that time. But, you fellows will, if you don’t accept Jesus as your savior as we’ve done."
"The stop at Camelot," adds Daniel "helped us to realize that you can’t change the world by changing outward conditions--that the change that is necessary is an inward one."
"And then, when we were talking to Peter in 33 A.D., everything became clear and we realized what God had been trying to tell us all along--that the real answer is Jesus."
"And that’s why we can’t continue with the mission."
"I thought" insists John, "that we were going to talk about that after you’ve had a chance to rest up."
"We’d like to talk about it now, if you don’t mind."
Mark, who has been sipping his brandy and puffing on his cigar as usual, takes another sip and another puff and sighs, "Ah, what th' heck? Let 'em talk about it now, if they want and get it out of their system, so to speak."
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