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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Achievement (03/08/12)

TITLE: It's all downhill from here!
By Donna Wilcher


May 3rd-
Yesterday was my 50th birthday! Yep, the big Five-O! They say, ďItís all downhill from hereĒ. I sure hope so.

Itís time I get serious and start making tough decisions about what, how, and where my life is supposed to go from here. I started this journal to keep track of my progress.

Iíll be praying that the Lord begins to open doors and shows me what He wants me to do with the rest of this life He has given me.

May 8th-
Be careful what you pray for, you might get it! Pastor has asked me to lead a womenís group. I told her that I would pray about it, and let her know.

As honored as I am, I think sheís lost her mind! Does she have me confused with someone else who is qualified to do this sort of thing?

What happens if I mess up? What if I open my big mouth and stick the whole shoe-store in it? What if I make a fool out of myself?

May 15th-
Every time I think about it, my stomach does flip-flops, and the unrelenting fear sends chills down my spine. ďCan I do this? ĎShould I do this?Ē

Keep praying!

May 22nd-
After much prayer, I have reluctantly agreed to lead the group. The Lord is showing me glimpses of the blessings this group could yield.

May 29th-
Five women came to our first meeting tonight. We sat quietly around the table with our Bibles open before us; all eyes were on me. Fear gripped my heart like a malicious tap-dance inside my chest.

Then, His peace enveloped me and my heart stopped itís dance. We studied our lesson, shared our struggles and victories, and said our tear-filled prayers.

I have hope.

June 3rd-
My stomachís doing those stupid flip-flops again! These women are depending on me to teach them lessons I donít have victory over in my own life! What was I thinking? This feels like the blind leading the blind.

Iím embarrassed and I hate letting them down. I truly love these women, and want to help them, but I canít do this! Iím going to tell Pastor that Iíve changed my mind.

ďI quit!Ē

June 5th-
I told Pastor how much I appreciated her giving me the opportunity, but I wasnít capable of leading the group, and hoped she could find someone who was more qualified.

She looked me straight in the eyes and said, ďGod does not call the perfected, He only calls the willingĒ, and she walked away. Talk about having the wind knocked out of you!

Her words shocked me, but I could feel the Lordís presence surrounding me. He had used her to say exactly what I needed to hear.

Now that I think about it, it is precisely what Heís been whispering into my heart for weeks. He knew I needed one final push out of my comfort zone.

I do believe the Lord has called and chosen me to do this, and I am willing. He knows my deepest desire and heartís cry is for Him to use my life. With His strength and guidance, I will continue to make a difference in these precious womenís lives.

My faith and trust in Him is growing.

November 20th-
Wow! Itís been months since Iíve written here. Iíve been so busy and so blessed!

More women have joined us on our journey to become all we are destined to be and do. Each week the Lord reveals a little more of what His glorious plans are for our lives, and He is giving us the strength to accomplish it.

The truth is, I have stuck my foot in my mouth, fumbled, and been tongue-tied more times than Iíd like to admit. On more than one occasion, Iíve realized I wasnít as ready as I should have been. This downhill journey does have its share of twists, turns, and bumps in the road.

Nevertheless, I will continue stepping out in faith, and He will use me to change these womenís lives, and offer them hope for a better future.

Thank you Father, even though I am far from being perfect, You are using my heartís desire and willingness to serve You, and together we are changing lives, one precious life at a time.

*Authors notes - This is a condensed and fictionalized version of my real lifeís story and ministry testimony.

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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This article has been read 610 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Margo McKenzie 03/15/12
These entries capture how many people feel when given a challenge task to perform and the simple words of encouragement that can propel us forward. Loved reading this.
Catrina Bradley 03/17/12
I've been there! This is so well written, and absolutely comes from the heart. I've learned that leading doesn't mean you need to be perfect - in fact, my students appreciate it when I tell them how I need the lesson as much as they do.
Laura Manley03/17/12
Wonderful story and well written. So often people see the potential in us that we cannot. Your story certainly causes this reader to see that and reminds me of Phil 3:13.
Melinda Melton 03/17/12
Wonderful story! It held my attention from beginning to end. God Bless buddy :)
Verna Cole Mitchell 03/17/12
I liked your journal format for your well-told story of achievement. One little grammar hint--Commas and periods go inside the quotation marks.
Glynis Becker03/17/12
Great job! I understand exactly how you feel because I've been there too. You reminded all of us what an amazing thing it is that God asks us to do and the blessings that come with being faithful to the call.
Amanda Brogan03/17/12
I've asked that question so many times, only from the other end of life. My late teens and the big "two-o" had me especially asking "where does God want me to go from here?" And I still only have a few of the answers. But the key, as you showed here, is just being willing to be used by Him and to be open to His leading ... day by day.

I loved the journal format! This was so good that I forgot I was reading a beginner's entry. Very well-done!
Allison Egley 03/17/12
This is great. My only "complaint" is that you didn't have a journal entry for my birthday in May. ;) You hit a couple/few days either side of it. :D Seriously though, there are some great reminders in here. I don't know that we'll ever feel fully qualified to do what He has planned for us!
Joanne Sher 03/19/12
So authentic. I've felt these things as well - more often than once. Thanks so much for sharing your story.
Geoffrey johnstone03/20/12
Fresh approach. Very creative. Well written.
Kathleen Langridge03/20/12
I liked the journal format. It portrayed a common theme in our lives as servants yet it was original, thoughtful and encouraging. Isn't it a hoot that we tend to focus on the end product instead of the step in front of us. Well done.
PamFord Davis 03/20/12
God often pushes us outside our comfort zones. I like the way the story developed with the turn of pages on a calendar. My favorite phrase was the one about the whole shoe store; very clever!
C D Swanson 03/21/12
An altogether beautiful story filled with the wonders of "God" and how He can use us for His plans.

I loved this whole entry...compelling and intriquing, and loved the style of how you presented the entry.

My favorite part:
"She looked me straight in the eyes and said, ďGod does not call the perfected, He only calls the willingĒ

WOW! Powerful stuff. Thank you for this.

God bless you~

Sarah Elisabeth 03/21/12
Great writing and you formatted it well!

"What if I open my big mouth and stick the whole shoe-store in it?" haha, just love that line. Keep writing!
C D Swanson 03/22/12
I am so happy for you! This was a beautiful story...I loved it.

A hearty Congratulations!
God Bless you~
Dannie Hawley 03/22/12
Hooting and cheering for you! Great job and welcome to level 2!
Amanda Brogan03/22/12
YAY DONNA! :D I knew this was a special piece. ;) So happy to see you at the top! Moving up!
Theresa Santy 03/22/12
Congratulations on your well-deserved first place win!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 03/22/12
Congratulations on your first place ribbon and for placing 13th overall!
Donna Wilcher03/22/12
Wow! I don't know what to say, other than..."Thank you!"

I'm still in shock...but praising God! This was His story, I just get to tell it.

Wilma Schlegel03/22/12
Excellent Donna!
and Congratulations!!!

I especially loved the line about sticking the 'whole shoe store in your mouth'.

This was so humorous, believable and encouraging.

God bless!