Package Deal

by Torry Martin

Dear B. Log,

This year will be the most thankful Thanksgiving ever! Why, you ask?

I, Wooton Z. Bassett, am the very proud owner of what Mr. McCready calls a “humongous, run-down, dilapidated eyesore.” Isn’t that great?

It’s not an eyesore to me, though. It’s a bank barn built in 1895, and I tell ya, it’s bee-you-ti-ful!

What’s a bank barn, you ask? Well, people used to build barns on a sloping hill so that the temperature of the ground kept it cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Pretty clever!

I’ve walked by the barn every day for the last few years and thought about what a waste it was that something so grand could be so run-down.

But today when I walked past it to deliver mail to Mr. McCready, he asked me if I’d be interested in making some extra money by doing a little “light yard work” for him.

“Sure,” I said. “How can I help?”

“I’m selling that piece of land,” he said, gesturing toward the barn. “Only thing is, the buyer wants me to tear down that humongous, run-down, dilapidated eyesore first.”

I gulped.

“I’ll pay you $2,000 to make that thing go away,” he finished.

“For one thing,” I said, “that’s not exactly light yard work. For two, did you say $2,000?”

“Yep,” he said. “I don’t care if you have to burn it to the ground, I want it gone.”

“Yes, sir!” I answered excitedly.

What Mr. McCready didn’t know was that I would have gladly paid him five times that amount for the barn.

“It’s a deal!” Mr. McCready said, shaking my hand to seal the agreement. “You’ve got one week to make it disappear.”

“Wait a minute. That’s impossible! A barn that enormous—”

“Too bad, so sad,” Mr. McCready cackled mischievously. “If you take longer than a week, I won’t pay you a dime.”

“But—”

“Oh, and I forgot to mention the stray kitten,” he said. “It’s been living there for two months. It’s a package deal, Bassett. The kitten goes with the barn.”

“I’m allergic to cats—” I tried to explain.

“It’s your problem now. Enjoy!” He turned and walked away.

So that’s the story of my current predicament.

I hired workers to help me tear down the barn. I want them to carefully remove it piece by piece and deliver it safely to my property. I plan on turning it into . . . well, it’ll be a surprise.

Right now, I need to grab my swimming goggles, nose plug and a butterfly net to go catch a kitten I’m probably allergic to.

Can’t complain, though, because my predicament reminded me that God is in control. Just like my plan to transform the dilapidated barn into a secret surprise, God has a plan to transform us more closely into the image of His Son, Jesus.

Isn’t that just dandy?

This article first appeared in the November 2011 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse magazine. Copyright © 2011 by Torry Martin. Used by permission. Illustration © Gary Locke.