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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Discern (08/12/10)

TITLE: God's Will
By Dianna Schnabel


Katie flopped down on her stomach, her grandmother’s wedding ring quilt forming a blue and white backdrop for her red leather Bible. She flipped through the pages, hoping that a passage would leap up and sing God’s will for her. After several minutes of fruitless searching she shut the Bible and laid her head on her arms. God, I don’t understand. Why won’t you show me what to do?

Katie was graduating from high school in a week and still had no idea which way God wanted her to go with her life. Determined not to stray from God’s will, she refused to go forward without hearing a clear word from Him. She raised herself up on her elbows, cupping her chin in her hands, her chestnut waves now a tangled cloud surrounding her freckled face. She mulled over choices once again as if by some miracle the right choice would become clear.

With a three point seven GPA, she had already been accepted to several colleges. The trouble was, Katie wasn’t sure what course of study she should pursue. Did God want her to go to a Bible college and major in children’s ministries or music? And what about location? She had been dating Bobby since Junior year but he was going to UCLA in August. Should she stay close to home so that they could continue to see each other on long weekends, or end things with Bobby and go to a school farther away?

Katie’s thoughts were interrupted by her mom’s voice. “Kids! Time for breakfast!”

She jumped up from her bed, knowing that her father, the pastor of Oak Hills Community Church, wouldn’t tolerate lateness on a Sunday morning. She took a moment to smooth her denim skirt, then combed her brown tresses with her fingers while she walked downstairs.

Katie made it to the kitchen in time to see her younger brothers scuttle into their seats. Her mom was carrying a platter of pancakes and a jug of syrup, which she set on the table before sliding into her own high-backed chair. “Katie, be a dear and bring the juice,” she requested.

Katie carried the pitcher over to the table, praying that her parents wouldn’t ask her about her plans…again. She bowed her head while her father blessed the food, then ate with her head down in an attempt to avoid eye contact. Thankfully her parents spent the breakfast hour engrossed in conversation with each other, busy planning out the details of this summer’s vacation bible school.

As soon as breakfast was over Katie and her brothers pitched in to clear the table while their father walked across the yard to the whitewashed church. Once the table was cleared the rest of the family set out towards the church. Katie’s brothers raced ahead as usual, leaving Katie and her mother to walk at a more distinguished pace.

Katie’s mother slipped her arm around Katie’s waist, her salt and pepper chignon and shallow laugh lines the only indication that they were mother and daughter rather than sisters. Sensing Katie’s somber mood, she decided it was time to offer a bit of advice. “Sweetie, I know you’re still trying to figure out what to do about college, but remember, God reveals everything in His time.”

Katie met her mother’s hazel eyes with her own bright blue ones. “I know you’re right, Mom. I guess I’m just impatient.”

Her mother answered as they walked up to the church. “It’s okay, Katie. God knows your heart. He understands that you are eager to do His will, and He will honor that.” She gave Katie a kiss on the cheek then went inside to take her place at the pipe organ.

Katie took her place in the front pew with her brothers, glad that Bobby was out of town for a baseball tournament so she could focus on the service without him to distract her. She began to relax as the congregation sang through several hymns, letting the familiar music calmed her troubled heart.

When her father began reading Jeremiah 29:11, God’s words soothed her soul like aloe.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Katie finally felt at peace. She may not know God’s specific plans for her yet, but she trusted that He would reveal them to her when the time was right.

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This article has been read 588 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Charla Diehl 08/19/10
I truly liked how you wrapped this story around a favorite Bible verse of mine. Every college bound student should be reading this one. Good job.
Verna Mull 08/20/10
This was a great article. I've lived a good many years, and have found that God is never 1 minute early, but He is NEVER too late. We humans are the ones that create the problems. Very well done.
Loren T. Lowery08/20/10
Very enjoyable to read. Easy to get involved with the characters and their concerns. Realistic dialogue and situations - well done!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/20/10
This story showed what many teens are facing; what to do with their lives. You did a good showing the girl's emotions, and the Bible verse was a perfect fit.
Nancy Sullivan 08/27/10
Congratulations on your first place (and your promotion :) Great job on the story. God Bless.
Jan Ackerson 04/03/11
Diana, I'm going to feature this story on the Front Page Showcase for the week of April 25. Look for it on the FaithWriters home page--and congratulations!
Nanle Peter05/04/11
wow!irresistibly on target! this rolls the stone over some lazarus in my life, i think your timing for the article and God's timing for my life are the best! thank you.