Seven: Chapters 85-89 :: By Alice Childs

Chapter 85

Journal Entry: January 5, 2025

Six years ago this very day, Lucius Draken signed a false peace covenant with Israel for a period of seven years. This one act, after the rapture of the Church, clued in all of us left-behind new believers that he was indeed the long-prophesied Antichrist. We are nearing the end of the last seven years. During this time, we’ve lived through the seven seal judgments, seven trumpet judgments; and now the first of the terrible bowl or vial judgments, as they are called in the King James Version of the Bible, is at last upon us. The last seven judgments of Revelation have begun.

Abba Lord, bring us through them. Help us to remain faithful even unto death. 

During these seven years we’ve seen the world, including our nation, suffer God’s increasing judgments. We’ve watched as our nation has been severely and rightfully judged. We’ve watched as our little mountain town slowly died. We’ve seen loss of life on a scale and magnitude we could have never imagined, and we’ve lost the majority of those closest and dearest to us. We have had those we love give their lives to protect ours. We’ve witnessed firsthand, many times over, God’s miraculous protection and provision. We’ve suffered hunger, deprivation, betrayal, and loss. But none of that can compare to what we have gained and will gain once these last seven years are finished and the Lord Jesus sets up His kingdom on a renewed and renovated earth.

Six years ago today, Lucius Draken, the Antichrist, was revealed to a lost, post-rapture world, thus beginning the first seal judgment. Today, the first of the final seven judgments of God began. From now until the end, this is the new ‘normal’ to which we three – all of our mountain family who are left – have finally adjusted. Yet even this new routine will shortly come to an end.

I wrote in my last entry that I’d been sensing in my spirit that some kind of change was coming, but that I hadn’t mentioned my uneasiness to either Sarah or Trail. I wanted to wait to see if maybe the sense of unease I have been having was just me being me, or whether they too might be having the same sense of unease as I’ve been having. On January 1, 2025, the night of the first day of this new year, God confirmed to us that change was indeed coming, sending each one of us individually a clear message. It came to us in a dream.

Journal, I admit that I’m a bit afraid and more than a little sad; yet, at the same time, I’m also excited beyond my ability to convey. You see, now I’m sure that God was indeed preparing us for whatever lies ahead. And what does lie ahead? I don’t know the details, but it is probably a mixture of great sorrow and even greater joy. Here’s what happened.

Our daily chores never vary. We work from ‘sunrise’ to ‘sunset’ – which is next to impossible to distinguish now because the skies remain dark, the atmosphere once again filled with ash and volcanic debris. Ever since the Yellowstone caldera erupted for the second time, the atmosphere has been choked with ash and volcanic detritus; also, the additional debris from the eruptions of Mt. Etna, Vesuvius, and the Alban caldera have only added to the atmospheric pollution. Our reprieve is over.

How grateful we are to God that He has given us such a good harvest over the past two years. It has sustained us, although our food supplies continue to decline no matter how careful we try to be.

Our last hen died just before Christmas last year. She was old and, frankly, we couldn’t believe she lived as long as she did. We will miss her and the fresh eggs she gave us, but in a way it’s a blessing knowing that she won’t be suffering what’s to come. This too is part of God’s preparation for us.

We don’t burn the oil lamps except for a couple of hours a day. We have a good supply of candles laid by, nearly 40 of them in differing sizes, so we’ve learned to work by candlelight. Lamp oil and wicks are precious commodities, so we save lamp oil for the lanterns and for the times when we really need the lamps lit. As a result of our dwindling stores of both oil and food, our days are spent maintaining and preserving what we have to survive.

Sorry Journal, I see I’m heading down another rabbit trail. Anyway, the night of January 1 of this new year 2025, we had all gone to bed when I awoke around 3:00 AM from the most vivid dream I’ve ever had.

I got up and went to sit in the great room to ponder on it awhile. After a few minutes, Sarah got up and joined me. Within a few minutes after she came in, Trail came down the stairs trying to walk as quietly as he could until he saw that Sarah and I both were already up.

The whole thing felt surreal. I almost expected Uri to come in from the front porch. This morning was way too similar for comfort to the day two years ago when Uri told us about what happened to Clyde and the rest of our cabin family.

“Oh hey,” said Trail. “I hope I didn’t wake y’all.”

“Not at all,” said Sarah, smiling. “I woke up and found Bobby gone, so I thought I’d see if he was sick or something. Besides,” she paused and said rather sheepishly, “I had a dream.”

“You and Martin Luther King, huh?” Trail said, jokingly, raising the ghost of a smile to Sarah’s face. “Truth is, I had one too – a really odd one; sort of a dream/vision I guess you could call it. I’ve never had a dream that was so clear and one in which I remember every detail,” said Trail, his jovial mood turning somber.

“I had one too,” I said, quietly. “Did y’all’s dreams involve visions of fire on the mountain and a command to prepare to leave?” I asked, looking from one to the other of them. Sarah’s open-mouthed stare and Trail’s slowly nodding head told me all I needed to know. Here was the confirmation I’d been waiting for. A big change is indeed headed our way. We just don’t know when.

“I can see we need to talk,” said Sarah, quietly. “I’ll put the kettle on the fire and make us some tea.”

“I’ll build up the fire,” said Trail.

After we were settled around the fire with our mugs of hot tea warming our hands, I began.

“I’ll tell you my dream. If the ones you two had differ from mine, then say so,” I said.

“My dream,” I said, “began like a movie. It was like I was watching each of us including myself – like we were in a movie, but I was also an observer. I was aware that I was watching – observing what was happening, yet the Bobby in the dream was really me too. I’ve never seen myself from an outside objective perspective before; and yet, at the same time, I was aware of being both part of the action and an outside observer of the action. It was a weird and disconcerting feeling.” I paused, waiting to see if either of them would say, ‘No that’s not what I dreamt,’ but neither of them said anything; so I assumed this was what their dreams were like too, only with themselves as both observer and participant.

“Anyway,” I resumed, “I saw us going about our regular chores. I couldn’t tell the time of day or even the season, nor did I sense any particular date, but I did get an overall impression that it was not too far into the future. Anyway, we were all going about our regular routine: I was bringing in a second load of firewood from the barn to stack in the woodbox, having just brought in an armload. Sarah, you were sitting on the couch in the great room sewing or mending or something, and Trail you were… ”

“I was sitting on the floor near the fireplace sorting through my tackle box looking for sinkers,” interrupted Trail.

“Exactly,” I said. “Anyway, we heard this buzzing, whirring sound far off in the distance but getting closer. Sarah, you said…

“I dropped my needlework” Sarah said, “and ran to the front door. I said, ‘That sounds like airplanes! A lot of them of them by the sound! Guys, they’re coming this way. We need to grab our bags and go – now!'”

In our dream, we grabbed our backpacks, our quiver and bows, and the two other bags that were filled and kept near the back door. One bag was filled with dried meat and fruit, and another with a few survival essentials and Trail’s medical bag.

Taking up the narrative again, in the dream I said to Sarah and Trail, ‘Go! Don’t stop to get anything else. Don’t even stop to put out the fire. Grab the backpacks, our quivers and bows, and the other two bags and go! We’ll head out the backdoor and into the woods. Take the deer trail through the woods. I’ll be right behind you. Don’t stop till you get to Qumran.’

After a time, in the dream, we were all standing…somewhere looking back toward Yellow Top. The air was filled with the smell of smoke and burning wood. There was the ominous glow of fire in the distance about 10 – 15 miles to the west of wherever we were. The fire looked to be coming from the direction where our cabin would be. The last thing we heard in the dream was a voice saying, ‘Here you will be safe. The fire will not reach you.’

“In this dream, did either of y’all hear a voice telling us what to pack and keep ready at all times?” I asked.

“Yeah,” said Trail. “Yes,” Sarah nodded in assent.

“Wait,” I said, “let’s get some paper and write down what each of us heard that we should pack to take with us.”

When we all finished writing, this was what we’d all heard in our dream or night vision or whatever it was. We were to pack:

  • Two or three changes of clothes apiece
  • Winter garments
  • Our study Bible
  • Candles – 10 apiece
  • Flints, and matches in plastic bags
  • Bowie and hunting knives
  • Quivers and arrows
  • Sleeping bags, blankets, and quilts
  • I small pot and 1 large pot
  • Trail’s medical bag
  • One bag filled with smoked meats, venison jerky, dried fruits, 2 jars of honey, and as much dehydrated vegetables as we could pack in the bag
  • Our canteens and mess kits
  • Fishing line, sinkers, and hooks

My list differed from theirs in only one way. I was told to bring my backpack that contained all my completed journals, the rest of my blank ones (only seven left now), and the remainder of my pens.

“Hey,” said Trail suddenly, “Do either of you remember what God told us to do about the laptop?”

Both Sarah and I nodded.

“We’re supposed to smash it, then throw the pieces into the river,” answered Sarah. “Of course, once we do that, we won’t know what’s going on anywhere else.”

“We won’t need to know, babylove,” I answered, taking her hand and giving it a light squeeze. “I think it will be fairly easy to figure out where we are on God’s timeline by what we will see happening and from reading our Bible.”

“It’s obvious what the dream means. We know Draken has both surveillance and tactical drones by the hundreds of thousands like the ones we’ve seen on the deep web. He uses them in vast numbers, spying on people, taking pictures and location coordinates, and God alone knows what other data they gather or what capabilities they have. What we heard, will hear, could be a huge squadron of drones and not aircraft, or it could be planes. I don’t think it really matters what they are. What their coming will signify is that when we hear them coming, that is our cue that it’s time to leave Yellow Top. Whatever it is we heard, will hear, we know they will be coming and we will need to leave in a hurry; kinda like the Jews who had to be ready to leave immediately once Draken desecrated the Temple,” I said

“I get that. But what does Qumran mean? Where is it? What is it?” asked Sarah, her brow furrowed in thought.

“The only Qumran I know of is the system of caves in Israel where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Surely God’s not going to send us to Israel… is He?” Trail asked, perplexed.

“I don’t think so,” I said, pensively. “We don’t know what it means now, but I think when the time is right, we will know.”

That very morning after we ate breakfast, we gathered our backpacks and two other big bags and filled them with everything we were told to pack, and placed our sleeping bags with them. I brought my bag with all of my written notebooks, pens, and extra blank books, and kept it with our other bags. The food bag we decided to rotate with fresher food as needed, but we would keep it as full as possible with what we have left.

Once everything was packed and lined up near the back door ready to grab at a moment’s notice, we all immediately felt better. I felt as if a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders. We’ve done what we can to prepare for whenever the time to leave comes. Now we wait.

All that happened on January 1, 2025. Today, January 5, six years to the day of Draken’s “peace plan,” the first of the last seven bowl judgments began. I’ll just write what scripture says it is. Looking at the results of it on the deep web is sickening. Still, God has continually warned over and over and over about the consequences of taking this mark. He even sent an angel flying throughout the earth, giving the everlasting gospel and warning the people of the earth not to take Draken’s mark; so those who are now suffering have only themselves to blame. Even in the midst of His great wrath, God still extends His great mercy. But for the bearers of Satan’s mark, their eternal doom is already set and sealed.

If the pattern of judgments in the past six years is any indicator, these last ones will likely also come in pairs and happen in rapid succession. We really are nearing the end, but the most terrible judgments are yet to come.

Lord help us to stay faithful, even unto death, no matter what the cost. 

One of God’s angels sent the first of the last seven bowl judgments today. All over the earth, the followers of Draken are in great physical torment. This first vial judgment impacted everyone who carries within their hand or forehead the Mark of the Dragon.

“And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image” (Revelation 16:2, KJV).


Journal Entry: Wednesday, April 23, 2025

“And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea” (Revelation 16:3, KJV).

Hello Journal; sorry it’s been a few months since my last entry. Truth is, we are always busy looking for food now. Our supplies are running low. Ever since Yellowstone blew the second time, the animal population which was just beginning to rebound, has crashed again. We’re having to go farther and farther out to hunt and trap. Our usual 5-6-mile hunting area is nearly depleted of game and wildlife. We still have the river nearby for fish, but that source of food will soon be gone too. Let me explain.

Last month, the second of the bowl judgments occurred. Whereas the first bowl judgment affected only those who carry the mark of the Antichrist in their hands or foreheads, the next judgment affects the entire world; unbelievers and believers alike. This latest judgment has poisoned the world’s oceans and seas. All saltwater seas and oceans have become so contaminated that every living thing in them has died. Seabirds and other life that depend on the oceans for food and sustenance have also died or are in the process of dying. In Revelation, it says that the sea has been ‘turned into blood.’ That’s exactly what has happened. I can’t imagine how terrifying and sickening the stench must be from billions upon billions of dead marine and aquatic life in all of the world’s oceans; their dead carcasses rotting and festering in utterly putrid saltwater slime; their masses of corpses rotting in every ocean of the world – all of them. Even oceangoing vessels will not be able to sail in disease-infested dead waters.

In all the previous judgments, it seemed to be that the disasters were regular natural occurrences, although on a far, far greater scale than normal; by that I mean that the judgments were the result of things such as fires, floods, earthquakes, volcanoes, asteroids, tidal waves, and such – all naturally occurring geological or cosmological events, except much greater in scope than usual.

This last set of judgments appears to be completely supernatural in origin. For example, this second bowl judgment of all sea life dying could only happen by supernatural causation.

As devastating as all ocean life dying is, it’s the next judgment that has us really concerned. While the second bowl judgment killed every living thing in the earth’s oceans, the next one will kill every living creature in all freshwater lakes, rivers, creeks, streams and fountains. This means that the animals and people who depend upon water to live (and every living thing does) will die as a result of having NO fresh water.

We wonder how God will preserve the remnant of believers, both Jews and Gentiles, during this year. We do not know, but we know that in some way He will because it’s certain that human beings cannot go more than three days without water before dying from thirst.

It’s almost certain that Draken and the elites of his EP forces already have well-stocked bunkers filled with food and drinkable water for themselves, but there’s no doubt in our minds that – just as God provided manna and fresh water to Moses and the children of Israel in the desert when God delivered them from slavery in Egypt – the same Lord who delivered the children of Israel will provide both food and clean water for all His remnant people, Jews and Gentiles alike, those few He will bring alive through to the end of the Tribulation. We ourselves may not make it through the remainder of the Tribulation alive, but God always has a remnant. We place all our trust in Him.

Because of the coming judgment of all freshwater being ‘turned into blood,’ we three are discussing making an overnight journey to look farther afield to see if we can find game, vegetation, or maybe some kind of water source somewhere that might not become polluted. Sarah had suggested that we guys go on this scouting expedition while she stayed home to tend to the homestead, but both Trail and I nixed that idea immediately. Neither of us feels comfortable leaving her here alone for the two, possibly three days we will be out scouting. Trail offered to go alone, but neither Sarah nor I were in favor of any one of us being on our own away from the other two should something unforeseen occur. Finally, we decided that all three of us would make a two-day excursion farther up to scope out what’s around and to see if game is any more plentiful farther out.

We brought out our maps and plotted our course. We decided to head north/northeast up into Piney Ridge, a spiny, fir and spruce-covered range about 20 miles from here. We decided to leave early tomorrow morning around 6:00 AM. Lord willing, we plan to go about 10-15 miles out to gage the prospects. We don’t want to go much farther than that for now. This is really only a scouting expedition. If there’s an abundance of game there, then we’ll have to decide what our options are and how to adjust to that situation. Even if we don’t find any game, we still need to know the lay of the land. In the past, I’ve hunted up on Piney Ridge with Grandpa and Clyde, so I’m somewhat familiar with it; but it’s been long years since I last was there, so I need to refresh my memory.

We will pack for a two-day camping trip. We’ll take meat and bottled water enough for a couple of days; our only remaining 3-man tent, our bow and arrows, and our guns – just in case.

Gotta get to bed, Journal. Catch you later, Lord willing.


Journal Entry: Friday, May 2, 2025

We are back from our excursion, Journal. Thanks to the Lord’s protection, good maps, a compass, and my own good head for direction. (I’m not trying to brag, but I’ve always had a sort of compass in my head. I rarely get lost). We made our way almost as far as Piney Ridge. We didn’t find much game anywhere, but we did find something just as important; maybe even more so. I’ll tell you about it.

We left the cabin at 6:00 AM. It was, of course, still dark, so we took our high-beam flashlights and used them sparingly. It’s always dim most of the time now, and because of the polluted atmosphere, we aren’t able to travel as fast as we ordinarily could have. We are all in good physical shape, having been forced by the circumstances of our lives to be much more physically active; but our diminished calorie intake impacts our stamina, slowing us down, and the ash that’s always in the air necessitates us having to wear breathing masks or bandanas over our faces when we are out for prolonged periods of time. This keeps us from going at peak speed. Still, we walked at a steady clip and managed to go a good 15 miles in under eight hours. We can make the trip faster in the future now that we know our way and have managed to set a trail.

We made our campsite in a small clearing that was secluded amongst a dense thicket of conifers. It was a good spot. Sarah cleared the area and started a campfire while Trail and I set up the tent. We could have gone farther, but we decided to take a break for the rest of the day. We wanted to have a good look around the area tomorrow before deciding whether to head home or head on up to Piney Ridge, which was not that far off.

We weren’t seeing much evidence of game anywhere; no deer tracks or animal scat. The trees and vegetation are beginning to die off too. The grasses are brittle and brown, and even the great conifers are showing signs of dying. What was even more unnerving was the nearly complete absence of birdsong and insect noise. The absence of those, coupled with the dimness of the daylight and the dying vegetation, gave us the feeling of being on some dead alien planet, or, in my mind, reminded me of the description the narrator gave of the area surrounding the House of Usher in E. A. Poe’s tale, “The Fall Of The House Of Usher.”

This place felt just as barren and desolate as that described in Poe’s story.

The ubiquitous background sounds of birds, the constant buzz of insects, and the croaks of tree frogs are background sounds so normal, they go almost unnoticed by us until they are no longer present. What is usually merely subliminal background noise becomes a silence that is jarring when it’s absent.

The effect of both the darkness and the utter quiet was unnerving in a visceral way. After a bit of exploration, we made a campfire, ate some venison jerky, and went to bed.

The next morning, we took our time exploring the area. We were in a little hollow in a small clearing almost completely encircled by huge 60-foot pines and spruce. Trail headed further into the trees behind our tent while Sarah and I took our bows and quivers and decided to look for rabbits or quail or something, anything. We were searching for some kind of fresh meat for breakfast. After about an hour and a half, we managed to shoot a couple of small rabbits. There didn’t seem to be any more game here than we have at home.

We went back to the tent to find Trail sitting on a log, smiling, a big 1,000-watt mega smile at us.

“Ahhh, I see y’all caught breakfast. Well let’s eat! I’m famished,” he said.

“What’s that Cheshire-Cat grin you’ve got plastered all over your face?” I asked.

“Oh, I’m too hungry to tell you now,” Trail said, grinning, but evasive. “I’ll skin the rabbits; and after we eat, I’ll show you what I found.”

So we skinned the rabbits which I cooked over an open fire. The fresh meat tasted wonderful and flooded our bodies with energy.

“Alright, Grand High Mysterious One,” said Sarah, grinning at Trail, “What’s the big secret? Where are you taking us?”

“Follow me. I think I’ve found Qumran,” said Trail, grinning from ear to ear.

About 200 yards into the thick woods behind where we’d set up our tent in the clearing, Trail stopped and spread out his arms. I looked around and saw…nothing but more trees.

“Did you ram your head into a tree?” I asked. “I’m only asking because I don’t see anything except trees, rocks, and more trees,” I said.

Sarah, who was more carefully looking around, at last gasped and said, “Oh, Trail, I see it! You’re wonderful! How ever did you find it? Do you think it’s safe to go inside?”

“See what?” I asked, since I still didn’t see anything at all.

Walking over to a large boulder situated between and a bit behind two immense fir trees, Trail pointed to a rocky ledge that had some kind of vine overhanging it. He bent down and swept back the vines to reveal the entrance to a cave. The entrance was practically invisible since the rock ledge that protruded over the opening by a good three feet overshadowed the opening. The vines made sort of a canopy or curtain in front of it.

“Wow!” I said, impressed. “How’d you find this? It’s almost impossible to see unless you know where to look.”

“Well,” said Trail, “I was wandering around when I tripped on my bootlace. It had come untied. As I bent down to tie it, I felt a breeze coming from somewhere. I groped around till I saw the opening. I shined my flashlight inside and saw that, after the opening, it slants downward a bit and then appears to open up. I didn’t go inside to check it out. If I’d gone in and it dropped off, y’all would never know what happened to me. I don’t believe that our finding this cave was an accident. I think God led us all here so I could find this cave. Of course, we need to make sure it’s safe. I’ll volunteer to go in and check it out if you want.”

“Not without some safety equipment. We need some rope in addition to our three good flashlights. Now that we know where it is and how to get here, we should head back home today, gather what we need, and hike back up tomorrow. By going back today, coming back tomorrow, then heading home again after that, we’ll be setting the path in our minds. It’s still a longish hike, but the more often we make the trip, the faster we will get. If this is the cave we were talking about in our dream, then I’m sure God will confirm that to us. Let’s go home. I’ll mark a trail that only we would recognize as being a trail; and when we come back tomorrow, we can see what we find inside.”

We did just that. Our ‘Qumran’ turned out to be a perfect place to hide out when the time comes that we will need to bug out. The opening beneath the overhang of the rock is a good 4 feet high and 5 feet in width. The ingenious way the rock ledge overhangs it, the vines that cover the opening, and the shade of the trees that keep it hidden make it a perfect hideaway. Trail and I have to crawl in on hands and knees, but Sarah can sorta duck walk in. There’s a gentle downward slope for about 20 feet, then it levels out and opens up into a cavern that has a ceiling height of about 7 feet! The cavern is a good 12 X 16 open area. There’s also a branch off to the right that’s about 6′ high that goes on a good way, sloping downward. What we found was a slightly smaller cavern which had a spring of fresh, cold groundwater bubbling up from the earth.

Farther on down, there was another cavern area with a bigger opening to the outside that came out a good quarter mile from the original opening. This meant that the cave hidden deep in the forested thicket was cross-ventilated, had fresh water from an underground spring, and had at least two entrances that were both well-hidden from obvious sight. And to think, this place was just 12 or so miles from Yellow Top.

We came back several times until we knew the way by heart. It was still a hike, but we felt sure now that we would be able to locate our own ‘Qumran’ anytime we would need to. We brought our sleeping bags, some bed rolls, two lanterns, two flashlights with extra batteries, our supply of candles, and David’s Bible that Trail and I had given Mitch. We wrapped all these things in plastic bags in several rain- proof tarps and stored them in what we called the Qumran great room so when the time came for us to run here, we’d have that much less to carry.

We had one more task to complete as soon as we got home. We all three sensed very strongly that it was time for us to get rid of the computer. When we got home, we took it out to our favorite fishing spot. There, Trail took a big rock and smashed it to bits. Then we all went down to the water’s edge and hurled the smashed pieces of it into the fast-running current of the river. Now, all we had to do was stay home and wait for God to tell us when to leave.

It breaks my heart to know that, according to the dream, the cabin is likely going to burn; but as both Sarah and Trail keep reminding me, Jesus’ coming kingdom is going to be far more beautiful than even Yellow Top in all its glory could ever be.


Journal Entry: Tuesday, July 29, 2025

“And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood. And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus. For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy. And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments” (Revelation 16:4-7, KJV).

On Wednesday, May 21, the third bowl judgment hit. We awoke to the overpowering stench of rotting fish and other animal life. Our little creek that had sustained us was fouled with the bodies of rotting minnows, frogs, tadpoles, and Insects. The dead carcasses of birds, possums and raccoons were lying around too. We tried to go out to look at the French Broad, but the stench was so overpowering we couldn’t get near the river.

Since we had been expecting this, we had been careful to fill to the brim every water barrel, both bathtubs, the kitchen sink and every available jar, glass, pitcher and bowl we have and do our best to keep them topped off. Even this amount of uncontaminated water will not last for any great length of time, though, and we know it.

Partly to get away from the stench and partly to make sure and set our minds at ease, we hiked up to Qumran and checked out our little underground spring. The water bubbling up out of it was fresh, sweet, and clear. We thanked God for His mercy and provision, then we drank until we sloshed. God has once again provided for our needs. How merciful He is to us! Once we knew our cave water source was uncontaminated, we went home with a much easier mind.

It’s been 10 weeks since the third bowl judgment came. We’ve had to keep the windows and doors shut tight because of the stench. It’s still bad, but it’s getting better – somewhat.

We are gathering another bag of food to take with us to Qumran when we go. We try to make a trip up there at least once a week, ferrying what we can before we have to come in earnest. As I said, we’ve already taken a lot of things such as our sleeping bags, blankets, winter clothing, our tent, and other stuff wrapped in waterproof tarps and stored them in the first big chamber; what we call the great room. When we cook, we’ll probably have to make our fires outside the cave, but that’s just an inconvenience and not really a problem, or we can build a fire close to the other entrance, what we call the back door.

We’re packing as many blankets and quilts as possible too. We don’t know how cold it may get. There’s several more months to get through should the Lord allow us to live to the end of the Tribulation. We expect the rest of the bowl judgments to come quickly.


Journal Entry: Sunday, August 3, 2025

Daylight, what there is of it now, is fading fast. I’m writing this by lantern light, so I’m trying to hurry because I don’t want to waste precious oil. It’s peaceful. I look over and see Sarah and Trail busy sorting through our things, arranging neatly all our worldly goods that are left to us now.

We awoke early this morning around 5 AM. Sarah made us one of our favorite meals; oatmeal with honey, some dried figs, and a little bit of fried salt pork. This morning we didn’t drink our usual cup of hot tea with breakfast. Today we had a treat. After Trail built up the fire, Sarah got out our campfire coffee pot and brewed us some real coffee. Having real brewed coffee is, for me, a treat worthy of that Christmas morning excitement I’d get as a kid. Sitting around our kitchen table, it was almost like old times, except for all the empty chairs where Mitch, Izzy and the rest used to sit. Still, in all, a real breakfast and two cups of coffee was a wonderful way to start the day.

The stench from the dead creek and the much bigger dead river is at last beginning to dissipate somewhat. The smell seems to be lessening, or maybe it’s just that we’re getting used to it. We no longer have our laptop, so we can’t check in to see how the rest of the world is faring, but it’s certain that an untold number are dying for lack of water. I think often of God’s remnant Jews that He is hiding in Bozrah, and wonder how God is feeding and providing water for them, and for the other Tribulation believers scattered all across the earth. As we ponder all these things, we pray for our brethren. There can’t be many of us left, and none of us knows whether we will be among the few who will survive these last months.

We talk often about the coming kingdom. How we long to see our friends and family who are now in Heaven awaiting the time when we will all be reunited together in Jesus’ coming kingdom. We cannot wait to see God’s beautiful earth restored to the perfection it was at creation. What’s left to us here is utter devastation and ruin with more to come.

Physically, we are all exhausted. Emotionally, we are wrung out. But spiritually, our joy overflows with the knowledge that very soon all this death and destruction will be over, and Jesus’ promised return will usher in His thousand-year reign as Absolute Monarch over a cleansed, renovated, and reconstructed earth; an earth such as no man has seen since the days of Adam before the Fall! How our hearts rejoice in this knowledge, and how we yearn for it to become reality.

After our early breakfast, we all went about our daily chores. Journal, in my pre-rapture life, I never imagined how easy I had it. I think back to the times I’d complain about being tired, not knowing back then that I had no idea of what tired really was, and I had certainly never been really, truly hungry before.

After breakfast I headed out to the barn to bring in more wood to replenish our woodbox. Our fireplace is such a blessing. As I’ve said before, we keep a fire in it all the time for both warmth and for cooking. Sarah has become a real pioneer wife; an expert at cooking in the fireplace. As I headed out to the barn, Trail was puttering around in his room looking for something, and Sarah, as usual, was busy getting started with one of the hundreds of things she does for us to keep our home running. She’s an amazing woman. I love her with all my heart. To Trail, she’s become the little sister he always wanted but never got. He used to tell us that when he was little, he’d beg Mama B for a little sister. He always said he already had brothers in Mitch, David, Jack and me, so he didn’t want any more boys; but he longed to have a little sister. Now he says God gave him three: Lilly, Byllie, and Sarah. Now that Lilly and Byllie are no longer here, Trail dotes on Sarah and she on him. We are the Three Musketeers of the Tribulation, as we laughingly call ourselves.

Anyway, I had just brought in a second armload of wood. Trail was sitting on the floor next to the fireplace tinkering with his tackle box, and Sarah was on the couch threading a needle, her lap filled with the never-ending mending that she’s constantly doing.

Suddenly, we heard a buzzing, whirring sound like the sound of a million bees or locusts off in the distance. The sound was loud enough that we could hear it even inside the cabin. Though the doors were shut, we had the front windows cracked open a bit to circulate some air. Even with the stench of the dead creek and river still hanging in the air, it had finally dissipated enough that we could open the windows and let in some air during the day. Sarah heard the noise before either Trail or I did. She jumped up and ran to the front door and looked out.

“That sounds like airplanes,” Sarah cried. “A lot of them by the sound! Guys, they’re coming this way. We need to grab our bags and go – now!”

“Go!” I said as Sarah dropped her mending on the couch, Trail grabbed his tackle box, and we all three ran to the back door where our bug-out bags had been packed and ready for this very time, ever since the first day of the year.

“Don’t stop to get anything else. Don’t even stop to put out the fire. Grab the backpacks, our quivers and bows, the other two bags and go! We’ll head out the backdoor and into the woods. Take the deer trail through the woods. I’ll be right behind you. Don’t stop till you get to Qumran.”

Talk about deja vu! We’ve all lived this day before – in our shared dream. Today, the past caught up with the future; or the vision caught up with reality.

This is it, I thought, as I ran after my wife and best friend, heading into the woods behind the cabin; we’re leaving home for good.

We grabbed everything we had packed, including our quivers and bows and Trail’s tackle box he was carrying, then we fled.

Our time on Yellow Top is over. From now until the end, whatever that may be for us, our new home is a cave beneath a rock, deep in a pine forest thick with spruce and fir trees.

In a few hours’ time, we had made it safely to our ‘Qumran.’ The next day we smelled smoke in the air. The three of us stood in the clearing that evening, looking back towards Yellow Top. From there, we could see the faint orange glow of fire and smell the pungent, stinging odor of burning wood. I sat down heavily on the ground. After a minute or so, both Sarah and Trail silently came over and sat down on either side of me. Sarah held my hand and Trail put his big hand on my shoulder. None of us said anything; none of us cried, but we each felt the weight of loss lying heavily on our hearts. We’d all just lost our home, but I had lost the only real home I’d ever had in my whole life. Grandpa and Grandma’s home had been my only real home. Now it was gone. Mercifully, Jesus had prepared us ahead of time that this day was coming.

With my heart aching, God gave me the strength and the peace to thank Him for warning us ahead of time that this loss was coming. Even in the midst of losing my home – our home – we could all thank Him for providing a means of escape from Draken’s planes or drones, or whatever they were, that would surely have found us out had we not been forewarned. We are learning that even the greatest hardships and most heart-wrenching losses are used by God for our good and for His glory.

TO BE CONTINUED: 11 more chapters to go.