Home Read What's New Join
My Account Login

Read Our Devotional             2016 Opportunities to be Published             Detailed Navigation

The HOME for Christian writers! The Home for Christian Writers!
The Official Writing Challenge



how it works
submission rules
guidelines for
choosing a level


submit your entry
read current entries
read past entries
challenge winners

Our Daily Devotional HERE
Place it on your site or
receive it daily by email.



how it works   Submit

Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Agreement/Disagreement (01/19/12)

TITLE: Truth or Consequences
By Gail Burks


Many years ago, a young man, age twelve, began his Christian journey. The same age Jesus was when He sat in the temple courts, reading to the religious leaders. However, our young man was still not resolute in his faith; he had just come to the Lord and was in the midst of internal war, in his soul. Did his parents know he was struggling? Probably not. But, the Lord knew.

That same summer, Ernie decided to steal from a major retail outlet. No, he was not in the store by himself, he was with his father looking at baseball equipment. His eyes focused on the baseball cards, just what he wanted for his collection.

So, instead of telling his dad that he would like to spend time looking, or possibly buying a pack, Ernie decided to place three packages of cards in his back pocket, without paying. He then told his dad he was going to the restroom, but he was not alone --- there is ALWAYS a security camera. Quickly opening the cards in secrecy, he was astonished when a Security guard met him right outside the restroom door, informing Ernie that he would be escorted to the office, for potential theft. Of course, young Ernie quickly told Security that his father was in the store. Despite a last ditch effort by Dad to obtain 'favor' or a 'break' from Security, the police were called.

Now, the boy's mother was unaware this incident transpired, until a week of so later, when an envelope arrived at the house. Addressed to the parents of Ernie, it was certainly clear from the police report and letter enclosed that a serious violation had occurred. Ernie was to report to the local Police station to sit in front of a peer jury. Now, this was the family's first (and last), experience with a peer jury, where the juvenile sits before other young people, mostly early and mid-teens, and is questioned. And that is just what they did...with questions, like “What made you decide to steal in the first place?” Along with the jury, the Peer Mediator (a police officer) listened and took notes. After much questioning, and a statement by Ernie's parents, it was decided to sentence the young man to 40 hours of community service at a local nursing home.

It was obvious that the enemy tried to prod this young man into a secret, lawless lifestyle. The enemy also tried to wedge confusion and enmity between the mother and father over this situation.

Remember, the mother had no knowledge of the incident. Well, when the envelope appeared at the house, the father said, matter of factly “I thought it was better NOT to say anything until the police report came in the mail”. The mother, on the other hand, said emphatically, “You should have told me right away!! This happened almost two weeks ago, and we could have been praying about this situation all along!”

As a Christian family, prayer and God's word were important, but not always at the forefront of daily life. Nonetheless, these parents sometimes disagreed about when and what to pray about; especially in these early years of walking with the Lord.

Make no mistake, the father believed in prayer, but sometimes had a different philosophy as to the best time to tell his wife about the son's occasional 'misdeeds' . In other words, not wanting to “stir things up and cause more confusion” in the home...or so he thought.

Through this difficult time, the parents agreed that prayer HAD to be paramount in their family, especially in covering both their sons, as the enemy always comes to steal, kill and destroy.

Ernie worked diligently at his community service with a favorable report given to the Peer Mediator. There was no adverse report filed at school and he never stole again. Through his teen-age years, Ernie completed high school and college, sang in the youth choir and played baseball. At the present time, he still collects baseball cards and attends sports memorabilia conventions as a vendor.

Ernie is also married with a baby on the way.

Jesus knows, as humans, we agree and disagree about many things, but that is why we have the Holy Spirit to lead and guide believers, even moms and dads, into all truth.

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be right now. CLICK HERE

JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.

This article has been read 314 times
Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 01/26/12
Very well written...and such a wonderful message. I liked this, nicely done.
God Bless you~
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 01/26/12
This is an interesting story. I can so picture the dad not saying anything. Many parents disagree over the best way to parent.

My biggest suggestion would be to show the reader the story. You did a great job telling it but I want to feel like I'm there. For example: Ernie stole a glance over his shoulder, he hunched over while his eyes darted around the store. He fingered the cards in his hand, turning them over while his tongue licked his lips.
These sentences describe Ernie desiring the cards, thinking about stealing them while knowing stealing his wrong.

Showing not telling is something many writers struggle with. Once you practice it a bit it gets easier. Nice message. I enjoyed the ending and think you did a nice job telling this story.
Judy Sauer 01/27/12
Be careful about using words such as No, and So, to begin a sentence. They are unnecessary and only clutter the story. Some parts of the story seemed out of sequence and I got confused.

Look for ways to add more descriptive wording that show the scenes rather than tell the story.

You obviously worked hard to write the story. Keep writing.
Jody Day 02/01/12
A great message and shows a lot of thought and hard work. We get 750 words for the Challenge and sometimes have much to say. It's a good place to learn economy of words.

You established that Ernie was stealing, so it wasn't necessary to add "without paying" at the end of the sentence.

Keep writing.
Juliana Gonzalez02/01/12
I really like your writing style. You kept me engaged the whole time. I was a little unclear on how this tied in with the topic, but it was good nonetheless. Great job!