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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Hotel/Motel (09/12/05)

TITLE: Heavenly Highway Hotel
By Jillian Hill
09/18/05


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Thinking back over the last two hours Jason couldn’t believe the bad luck that had stranded him here, Heavenly Highway Hotel. He was scheduled to attend a conference for work today. He had left his house in plenty of time but a freak snowstorm had caused him to pull over to the side of the road. Thank goodness he had come upon this hotel.

Jason needed to call his wife but knew all he would hear is how he should have stayed home to attend his daughter’s school play. For goodness sake she was only in kindergarten. He had plenty of school plays to go and see. His wife did not understand that he was next in line for a promotion. More money would mean nice things for his family and better vacations. Then they could spend time together in nice places. Why couldn’t she just support him?

Deciding to put the phone call off he went downstairs to the hotel restaurant and ordered lunch. Jason sat back observing the other diners as he waited for his meal. In the corner he saw a young girl quietly enjoying her food. Jason slightly gasped when she stood and he could see she was pregnant. She was just a baby herself. Scanning the rest of the room he saw a middle aged woman with bandages wrapped around her wrists. Next to her table a young man was shifting nervously in his chair. Jason noticed the young man kept rubbing his arms like he was cold. Drugs apparently, Jason had seen his younger brother act the same way. As he looked around the room everyone seemed to have some type of problem even though he could not identify them.

“Sir, are you ok?” A waiter appeared with his food.

“What kind of place is this?” Jason asked abruptly.

The waiter smiled “just a hotel, sir, which serves the needs of others”. Jason thanked him for the meal and began to eat.

“Excuse me.” Jason looked up to see a guy who looked about his age standing in front of him. “My name is Stephen and I was wondering if I could sit with you. All of the other tables are full.”

“No problem. My name is Jason.”

Stephen took a seat and ordered. “Well, what brings you to this neighborhood Jason?”

“I was on my way to a conference for work when the snowstorm stranded me. How about you?” Jason asked politely.

“Me?” Stephen grunted. “I have just been driving no destination in mind.”

“It must be nice.”

“I wouldn’t say it is all that nice.”

“Believe me going to work day in and day out, striving to make enough money to provide nice things for your family is not fun. Your life is nice.”

Stephen looked sad. “You sound just like me a year ago.”

“Oh” Jason raised his eyebrows.

“Last year all I could do was work for the next promotion even though I had plenty of money to provide for my family I wanted more. Now all of that money is useless.” Jason swallowed not sure if he wanted to hear the rest. “My wife and son were killed nine months ago,” Stephen laughed bitterly “I wasn’t with them because of a conference for work that I really didn’t have to go to”.

Jason cleared his throat “you probably would have been killed too.”

“Or I could have prevented the accident,” Stephen replied “now all I can do is think of the things I missed because of work. My happy memories are few because I did not take the time to make them”. Jason’s mind went to his daughter’s school play he was going to miss. Stephen stood “Look man I’m sorry to bring you down but let me give you some advice.”

“Ok.”

“Do you believe in God?”

“Yes.”

“Do you believe God will provide for you?”

“I believe God gave me this job to provide for my family.”

“Why would God give you a family? Just to provide things for? Or to love and guide them in his word and promises?”

Later that evening Jason sat in his room pondering Stephen and his words. Looking at the phone beside his bed he noticed a book beside it. Reaching over he picked up a worn Bible. Flipping it open he came to a familiar passage Matthew 6:25-34 (KJV).

Suddenly his priorities came into focus. Setting the Bible down he picked up the phone. “Honey, it’s me. I’m coming home.”


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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 09/19/05
If the hotel is there to serve the needs of others, then obviously Stephen is there to meet Jason's needs. But who is there for Stephen? Does he live there? Maybe tie up a few loose ends, and you'll have an effective allegory.
B Brenton09/22/05
Hmmmm.... it provokes the thoughts it does. Good though. Thumbs up, bud!
Deborah Porter 09/27/05
Jillian, this was a very good entry and rated very well with the Level 1 judges last week. You actually ranked 7th out of the 44 Level 1 entries - so well done.

Just keep an eye out for your punctuation - you need some commas and extra full-stops! This sentence, for example: "Last year all I could do was work for the next promotion even though I had plenty of money to provide for my family I wanted more." It really needed to be something like: "Last year all I could do was work for the next promotion. Even though I had plenty of money to provide for my family, I wanted more."

Other than that though, it was a good message and you are definitely heading in the right direction. With love, Deb (Challenge Coordinator)