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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Green (10/22/09)

TITLE: God's Green Earth
By Alicia Calhoun


“Sarah Elizabeth,” her mother called out after an argument. “At least come in and eat.”
“Eat what? Hot dogs for the fourth night!” the sullen 14-year old exclaimed. “No let’s be daring. Tonight we will have grilled cheese sandwiches.”
Her mother chuckled. “Honey, I know you are tired of eating the same old things every day, but at least we have something to eat. Don’t you think you should thank God for that?
Sarah just rolled her eyes. Sarah just did not understand her mom, which is why she sitting on the porch steps outside staring at the green buds trying to get through the sidewalk. Her mom was just always so cheerful. She called EVERYONE sickeningly sweet terms of endearment like sweetie and darling.
Also her mother ALWAYS, found some good in every situation. And she wanted to think God for everything. How did her mom even know there was a God? If there is a God, then why did bad things happen to good people? And why was she in so much pain right now?
A year ago, Sarah was one of the happiest children you could ever find. She had loving parents, and a pretty decent, comfortable, happy life. All that disappeared about half a year ago when their world got turned upside-down. Her father was killed in a car accident by a drunk driver. This began a snow ball effect of the bad things in her life. They were evicted from their house and forced to live paycheck to paycheck. Also Sarah isolated herself from pretty much everyone because they didn’t know how to act around her.
Sarah didn’t see any good in her father dying, and she could barely function without him. Her mother, however just kept on going and praying. That’s what made Sarah really confused. Whatever her mom did, it worked. Sarah could remember her mom being devastated for a while after the wreck, but now she was strong.
“Sarah, sweetheart we need to talk,” her mom began. “I know all of this is hard on you. It is hard on us all.”
“Really, I couldn’t tell by looking at you. It seems like you are moving on like normal. Like you have ju…just forgotten Daddy.”
“That’s ridiculous. I will never forget your dad. I miss him every second of every day!”
“Then how do you handle it so well.”
“I don’t. I lean on God,” her mother said with such a serene and sure smile.
“How can you lean on someone you don’t know is real?”
“I do know He is real.”
“I know because I feel God in my heart, but also because of all the beauty in nature that God created. Sarah, sweetheart, look around you what do you see?”
Sarah did as she was told. “Nothing much,” she replied. “All a see are like a million other dreary apartments identical to ours. I see no beauty. There is just yucky dirt. There isn’t even any green grass around. Wait, I take that back. The only green things are those pathetic sprouts coming out of the sidewalk.
Her mother once again smiled. “Those sprouts you call pathetic, I think are strong. Think about it for a minute. Which is stronger, the little green grass or the concrete sidewalk?”
“Duh, the sidewalk.”
“Then how does the grass get through.”
“I don’t know.”
“Me neither, but I do know that someone created them with enough resilience to survive. God. I look around nature and I see how marvelous and detailed God’s plan really is. You can’t tell me that trees and plants just happen to need carbon dioxide, and give off oxygen, while humans need oxygen and give off carbon dioxide. I can’t help but think what an awesome God we have when I see the sun rise or set. When I look at that green grass coming through the cracks I can’t help but think of hope. If God cared enough, to design a way for those few green sprouts to survive, then what does He have in store for us?”
Sarah stayed outside long after their conversation staring at the bits of green all along her sidewalk in amazement. In fact, there were a lot of things on God’s green earth, as she had heard it referred to before as, that were pretty amazing. Maybe for once her mom did have a point. She needed to give this some more thought.

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This article has been read 446 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Marie Fink10/29/09
"God's Gift of Resilience" would have been a good title for this piece also. Good work.
Mark Bell10/29/09
nice dialogue and characters. good turn of the perspective for the child at the end. very real. thank you for sharing.
Charla Diehl 10/30/09
I like the way Sarah's mom presented a godly message so simply to her daughter, and to your readers. Good job.
Red ink: putting spaces between the paragraphs makes for easier reading.
Colin Swann11/02/09
Good story - enjoyed reading this. Keep up the good work and take on board what the third comment said. Thanks. Colin.
Ruth Brown11/02/09
Really good story. You are on your way!
May God bless you in your writing! Ruth
Chely Roach11/02/09
You have an wonderful gift for storytelling; this was well paced with a timeless message. Great job!
Betty Castleberry11/04/09
Strong message wrapped up in an enjoyable story. A few minor mechanical errors here and there, but overall, this was well done. Kudos!
larry troxell 11/04/09
minor brick: paragraph spacing will help the reader. you have great potential to glorify the lord with your writing.
Jan Ackerson 11/04/09
A wonderful start! My biggest suggestion would be to work on the mechanics of good writing--sentence structure and punctuation in particular. Your characterization and plot structure were fine, and I liked your open, not totally resolved ending.
Sarah Elisabeth 11/04/09
You had me hooked with the first two words ;-)

This had a really good message! I was impressed by the dialogue you created between mother and daughter.

I'm sure you're aware of the errors. Might try reading your piece aloud before submitting.

Great take on the topic, I was wondering how you would tie it in. You did so very nicely!