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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: This Side of Paradise (not about the book) (07/14/11)

TITLE: The Door
By Jackie Smithwick


The sun was beaming through the small glass window on the sink in our small project apartment. Under the kitchen door was a small crack where the sunlight drew a thin line onto the floor. My mother had left to take my older sister to the high school and my baby sister to the baby sitters, and then she would return home to get ready for her work on the “swing sift.” I sat on the sofa in the living room only a few feet away from the kitchen, waiting the time when I would start my daily walk to middle-school.

There was a knock at the door. I was taught never open the door unless I knew who was there, so I asked, “Who is it?” No answer so I asked louder, “Who is it?!” Still no answer.

Through the small sunlit crack I could see what appeared to be the feet of someone standing there, just waiting for me to open the door. The fear of the unknown coupled with recent crank phone calls brought to my mind questions like, “what would this person do if I opened the door, or are they going to break in?”

My heart was pounding as my fingers found the metal holes of the old dial telephone, and with a shaking hand pulled each of the numbers posted on the front of our phone book.

My voice must have been quivering as I quietly said “There is someone standing at my door and will not tell me who they are.”

The dispatcher on the other end of the phone was very calming as he asked my address and at what door the person was standing. It probably seemed like an eternity at the time, but actually it was only a matter of minutes before I heard another knock. This knock came from the front door and I asked again “Who is it?”

“This is the police.”

I breathed a sigh of relief as I opened the door and saw a tall man dressed in dark blue. He came in, crossed the living room to the kitchen and opened the back door.

My eyes were open as wide as possible, and my heart was pounding as the door swung open. As the sun flooded the kitchen I could see clearly that there was no one standing there. I was relieved, a little baffled, but quite anxious to see what was on the other side of the door.

“I know there was someone there” I thought, as I watched the kind police officer bend over, stand straight up then turn around to face me. He was holding two loaves of bread. Like the milk man, the bread man came regularly and left the bread my mother ordered. He had knocked on the door, stood the bread on end next to the door, and then left.

Just as I could not see the bread on the other side of the door, neither can we see or even imagine what God has in store for us on the other side of heaven’s door.

“Here we see the manna falling small, like coriander seed, but there shall we eat the bread of heaven and the old corn of the kingdom……. We have many ungratified desires at present, but soon every wish shall be satisfied; and all our powers shall find the sweetest employment in that eternal world of joy. ….” Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening Readings (Morning July 20)

What we don’t understand, will become clear one day. It may take faith we never thought possible, but even our faith comes from Him. This faith may take us down a different path, and we may be surprised or even a little baffled along the way, but the son will flood our hearts with rays of unexplained love as we gaze through the glass darkly toward paradise.

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” I Corinthians 13:12 (KJV)

The first part of this story really happened. The second part is a truth that has happened, is happening and will happen. Praise God!

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This article has been read 295 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Bryan Rudolph07/21/11
Oh, my oh my, ok, . . . let me say something. All right, that story was mesmerizing . . . I mean your description was so captivating of mounting tension, I fully sympathetically identified with the child. Good and powerful interest generators in gear there. But, that strength soon shock stopped. I went from being fully in the scene, to being lectured about the scene – and so abruptly, it frustrated me. Story telling and preaching can be interweaved, for great effect; but, no such attempt was done here: first part to tell, next part to sell – better to sell, while you tell, if you wish to have sold, what you told.

Well, . . . enough on that.

You sure can write a spellbinding story.
Nancy Bucca07/21/11
This didn't frustrate me at all. Yes, the first part was a spellbinding story; but the second part was like a second half of a devotional. I think they blended in quite well together.

- But to each his, or her, own.
Juliette Chamberlain-Bond07/23/11
Your opening paragraphs in which you describe a child's terror of an unknown visitor is well written and draws the reader in.
Your final chapters seem to me to draw conclusions from you illustrations which make perfect sense.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/02/11
Congratulations for ranking 6th in level one!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/02/11
After reading the other comment I had to say this is a great devotional. I love it when the author tells me a part of their life, it's a great way of showing how people learn what God teaches them.

Maybe if you had connected it by saying Now all these years later, I remember the lesson God taught me instead of just putting the stars in the first commenter might not have been so jarred, but again I loved it!