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Previous Challenge Entry (EDITOR'S CHOICE)
Topic: Search Engine (10/06/11)

TITLE: Search Complete
By Lori Othouse
~4th Place


The cursor blinked at her like a ticking clock, waiting for her next move. Kayla hesitated, her fingers poised over the keyboard. Was she really doing this? Had she become one of those women she swore she would never be? How did she ever get to this place…

Kayla had always dreamed of getting married, as any good church girl should. Or so she was told. Through the years, her heart had been broken a time or two but then she found the one. He was charming and good-looking and fun. Oh yes, and he went to church every Sunday. There was this strange tone in his voice that she heard on occasion, but, hey, nobody’s perfect, right?

They were married and settled into the life she always dreamed of - the husband, house, and happily ever after. Things were good for a while, then that occasional tone began to be more of a regular tone. It was hard to describe, actually, like a combination of condescension, disapproval and anger, in varying degrees of each. And when it escalated to blatant insults and yelling, she cried herself to sleep more than not.

Disillusionment clouded her soul. Was it him? Was it her? Was she just crazy? He said he loved her, but crushed her over and over again. Held her close, but looked right through her. She was left to deal with the pain and confusion on her own and her dream began to unravel into a nightmare.

Growing up, she thought that being single and lonely was the saddest state a person could be in. She knew now that being married and lonely was even worse…

Looking back at the screen, Kayla’s expression hardened. Why shouldn’t she? After the way he treated her, did he deserve any better? Sure, two wrongs don’t make a right, but then sometimes nothing makes it right.

She began typing – ‘find love’, ‘dating sites’ and ‘looking for love’. Each time the search engine immediately pulled up several pages of sites promising true love. She clicked one, not sure of what to do next.

It seemed very easy to find exactly what she wanted. Narrowing her eyes, she clicked away at what she was looking for – male, 30-40 years old, easygoing, sense of humor... After clicking ‘Submit’, she waited. It was searching. Searching for just the right man. The one who would treat her right, talk decent to her and…truly love her.

She looked back at the screen. Still searching…



Did it really take this long? Aimlessly, she scrolled down the page. A bright red link caught her eye: ‘Searching for Love? Try Jesus’.

Kayla smirked, “Sorry, but ‘Sinless Savior of the world’ wasn’t a category I could choose from.”

She felt a stab of conviction at her sarcasm. Something she hadn’t felt in quite a while. She still loved God, but things were just so bad right now. Besides, He didn’t seem to be doing a whole lot to help her, anyway. You’d think the God of the Universe might have a little compassion and at least nod her way now and then. Do something about this mess. You know, be all those things He said He was, instead of just-

Kayla froze. The voice of her thoughts had a strange tone. A tone she had grown to hate. Dear Lord, it was her husband’s. And she was using it with God.

Tears came to her eyes as the conviction hit even harder. Her Savior and First Love, and she had completely left Him out of the equation. Then treated Him with contempt for not rushing to her immediate rescue. And here she was, sinfully searching for true love, when it was hers all along.

She bowed her head, whispering a prayer of repentance as her tears fell freely. Slowly, she could feel the enormous weight of her pain being lifted and His sweet arms of peace around her. Maybe she wasn’t as alone as she thought. The future may be uncertain, but the One who holds it wasn’t. And, at that moment, that was all she needed.

Looking up, Kayla noticed that the screen had displayed several pictures of available men and in big letters, the phrase, ‘Search Complete!’

Kayla blinked through her tears and smiled, turning off the screen.

Yes, it is.

Accept Jesus as Your Savior Right Now and be Certain of Eternal Life.

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Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 10/21/11
Oh my heavens-what a touching and heart warming story! I loved this! It held my interest all the way through.

It was perfectly on target with the subject - and it was current with the "dating online services" and most important of all; she learned who her greatest love of all is. Amen. What a fabulous entry.

Beautifully written and phenomenal ending! Great job! God Bless you~
Linda Goergen10/21/11
I think this is one of my favorites I have read, for just the sheer raw emotion of it, first in MC’s hurt and then in the revelation of her actions and then with the joy of fully remembering her first love, Jesus! The topic was so flawlessly woven into the story, you would never guess this story was topic driven. It was a great read with a great message - just an excellent job on this!
Mona Purvis10/22/11
This entry needs to be listed under the heading: How to write a dynamic entry while keeping fully on topic.
I love everything about this entry. The conflict and resolution. So believable. Teaches a lesson worth learning. Gets a big thumbs up from me.

Melanie Kerr 10/24/11
I thought your scenario was very believable. Often we think in terms of happy ever after when Christians get married - a rosy glow that is not everyone's experience. I loved the way you brought the story back to God and the truth that we are never alone.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/26/11
This is a great take on the topic. Very creative you pulled me in right away and the ending was perfect. I really thought the search would show her perfect match was her husband. I'm so glad you didn't go that rate. I could relate to the MC you did an outstanding job of showing her angst.
Beth LaBuff 11/03/11
I LOVE your ending. It's powerful. This is perfect topic-wise and story-wise. Congrats on your EC!
Valda van Gelder11/07/11
A true experence for many
enjoyed reading this peiece