Daniel and his mother discuss the ruthless nature of the Roman troops who occupy the land, It’s nothing for them to kill a local citizen. Will there be an uprising soon? Who will be the next to fall under the harsh Roman treatment? Though Daniel submits to the authority, it’s a reluctant obedience. Will his mother’s encouragement to follow the Master’s teaching sink in? Due to the hot headed nature of his father, and being put to death by the Romans, Daniel’s uncle is hesitant to help, for fear of being linked to the rebellious behavior.
On the way to visit his uncle, Daniel is forced to carry the shield of a Roman soldier. His initial attempt to gain support from the crowd back fires on him. Now, he’ll be late to meet his uncle. Complaints only cause the soldier to delay in the mile that the law requires of the citizens to carry a load. Then something happens when Daniel talks to a man who had encountered the healing power of the Master first hand. The stranger’s words, his mother’s words, and the Master’s words all resonate, and finally make sense to Daniel.
The test comes when the soldier demands Daniel’s cloak. Then when the end of his mile is reached, Daniel surprises the soldier by stopping the complaints and continuing to carry his load. The rain, the mud, and being late for meeting his uncle no longer matter. His commitment pays off in ways his earlier conception of bravery never could have done.