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

TITLE: Christmas Proverb
By Heather Palmer


The tail lights on the car in front of her were tiny red eyes in a sea of white. It was snowing hard. The kind of Michigan snow that is so wet and heavy it leaves ice on the windshield your wipers can’t remove. Katherine turned the blades on high and squirted what was sure to be the last bit of wiper fluid on the windshield and started to pray. She had been driving for miles in conditions that made her heart pound and knuckles white. Why had she decided to go to the Upper Peninsula for Christmas? Probably because her entire family was going to be there and she needed desperately to see and hold them. Christmas this year was at Great Aunt Debbie’s, six hours north, and Katherine had not been there before. The map on the front seat was useless in the blizzard. She couldn’t see street signs for the blowing and drifting snow. “Oh why didn’t I buy one of those fancy GPS systems? I could have named her Sally or Noel or even, Mrs. Clause.”

After the car in front of her turned to the right Katherine just sat at an intersection . The driver had had no doubt about accelerating and turning the corner. But Katherine wasn’t sure which way she needed to go. She sat a moment longer and the driver behind her honked his horn. “Oh Lord, please help me”, she whispered in a desperate call for help. She looked one last time to the right, to the left and then straight ahead. And in that moment she remembered a proverb she‘d memorized as a girl. Putting her foot gently on the gas pedal, she accelerated straight through the intersection. In the rearview mirror Katherine could see the cars moving along one at a time, some turning left, and some right. She was scared and lost, with an icy windshield, no cell phone service and now the “low fuel” alert dinging in her ears.

“Oh Lord, please help me,” she cried again, turning her eyes from the rear view mirror to the snow- covered road ahead. In that moment she saw a yellow glow in the distance and kept driving until she reached the lighted sign which advertised gasoline prices and wished travelers a “Merry Christmas“. Relief flooded over her as she pulled up to the single pump in the lot. She pulled her hood up over her head and got out of the car. Pumping gas, she looked inside the store and saw a lone woman staring back at her. Katherine drew the $20 bill out of her pocket and ran for the door. As she entered she was hit with the strong aroma of coffee and the pleasant voice of the clerk. “What are you doing out there in that blizzard, Child?”, she asked. Katherine poured a cup of coffee and took it to the counter. Paying for her purchases, she replied, “Going to my aunt’s house for Christmas, but I’m afraid I’m lost. Do you happen to know where 11063 Berringer Road is? “

“Well, I sure do, Honey. Is your aunt’s name Debbie Andrews? I know Debbie,” the clerk replied.

“Yes, that‘s her. Oh, thank you so much.”

The clerk had soft blue eyes that crinkled when she smiled at Katherine. They talked and sipped coffee and then the clerk sent the traveler on her way. Katherine pulled slowly back onto the road. With a thankful heart she glanced one more time into her mirror, but the yellow glow had faded away.

Arriving at Aunt Debbie‘s house an hour later, Katherine was greeted with laughter and love and worried arms that encircled her. She had made it for Christmas.

“How did you find your way in that blizzard Katherine?’ her mother asked.

“I prayed, Mom. And then I heard it. ‘Don’t turn to the right or left. Keep your feet from the path of evil.’# And I know that God gave me that proverb to guide me to all of you for Christmas.”

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This article has been read 283 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Verna Mull 08/20/10
Very nice story, and so much like our Gods' love.
Loren T. Lowery08/20/10
Good job at story telling with just the appropriate Bible verse to pull it all together. My one comment would be to watch the use of "tag" line. For instance when she entered the store and was greeted with the voice of the clerk "What are you doing out in the blizzard, child?" she asked." The "she asked" seems redundant (to me) in that the reader knows that she (the clerk) is the one asking. Nice job, keep up the good work.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/20/10
This was a thrilling story. You brought me right into the story.

You might want to consider breaking up the paragraphs into smaller ones. Also make sure you start a new paragraph for each new speaker.

The Bible verse she remembered in the end was a clever twist in the story.
Patsy Hallum08/23/10
Enjoyed the story. Drew me right in to the MCs feelings. Keep writing!
Joyce Morse08/24/10
Very interesting and descriptive. I loved the proverb at the end. It shows how God can bring scripture to our minds just at the time we need it.