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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Threefold Cord (04/12/12)

TITLE: The Goat and a Bible Lesson
By LaRue Kendrick


The Goat and a Bible Lesson

I watched through my open kitchen window as our young son tried unsuccessfully to control his pet goat with a single strand of twine. He would just get the twine, which was looped around the goat’s belly, tied to a fence post when the goat would pull and run off as if the twine weren’t there.

Finally, the four-year-old boy was standing with his head down, his ball cap askew, and a tear rolling down his cheek. His father strode over to where he stood, kneeled down to eye level with the boy and pushed his own cap back on his head. Through the window where a breeze rustled the curtains and I enjoyed the spring songs of meadowlarks and robins, I could hear his words to our young son. “Son, the strand of twine is not strong enough to hold the goat. Why do you want to tie the goat up anyway?”

The boy lifted his face to his Dad’s. Tears made smudges on his dusty cheeks as he wiped them away with the back of his small hand. “Dad, I just want to tie him up so I can brush him, and I want to be able to lead him around.”

My husband pulled a red handkerchief out of his back pocket and wiped our son’s face off and helped him blow his nose, then as he pushed the handkerchief back into his back pocket he said, “Let’s go to the barn and find a halter that fits your goat. That will make it easier for you to catch him. Then we will find a lead rope to attach to the halter that is strong enough so he can’t break loose.”

I watched the two of them walk over to the barn where they disappeared through the big open door. I finished putting the dirty dishes into the dishwasher and started another load of clothes in the washing machine before returning to look out of the window on my world.

I returned in time to hear my husband kindly explain a Biblical principle to our son. As he kneeled on one knee, he held a blue and white lead rope in his hands along with the single strand our son had been using. He said, “Do you see how this lead rope has two blue cords and one white one and the twine is just one thin strand?” Our son nodded his head. His dad went on to say, “Because the rope is a threefold cord, it is much stronger than the single strand, and the goat won’t be able to break it. We will just clip the rope onto the halter the goat has on now, and he can even munch on the grass under the fence while you brush him. How does that sound?”

The little boy turned up his smiling face and said, “That sounds great, Dad.” My husband returned to his work, and I smiled as I watched the boy tenderly brush his goat, all the while explaining to the animal just what his father had explained to him. I also thought of how the Bible tells us that a threefold cord is not easily broken, meaning that two people with their lives entwined with God can withstand much.

How thankful I was that my husband and I had that threefold cord relationship with our Heavenly Father and that we could stand together in whatever life brought to us without being torn apart. I was also thankful for the life lessons that could be taught to our children through our life in the country and our relationship with the animals and seeds that are part of our world.

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This article has been read 326 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 04/19/12
This is a sweet story. The little guy grabbed my attention right off and I found myself smiling.

You may want to work on making the dialog seem more natural by including contractions and possibly even slang or less formal words. When his dad (In this case dad should start with a lowercase because of the qualifier his) was talking I found it hard to believe he would naturally use the phrase threefold cord. A little guy wouldn't understand that phrase.

You did an outstanding job of incorporating the topic into your story. I know sometimes I worry that the judges may not see the topic in my story so I'll throw the topic words in. But you really didn't need to do that because it was clear from the beginning what your story was about.

I liked the connection between father and son. Also, the descriptions you used were perfect. You painted a picture for me with your words. You did a great job of showing instead of telling. that's not an easy thing to master.
pam Leitermann04/21/12
I liked it good job.
Janice Quimby04/22/12
This was a great illustration. I enjoyed reading it. It was a great title too. I was about ready to stop reading entries but your title caught my attention and caused me to check it out. Keep up the good work.
Genia Gilbert04/22/12
This touched me as I could easily see love in the father and mother, and picture the little boy. I really liked the illustration of the ropes. Good writing.
Patsy Hallum04/22/12
AMEN! Well written story of patience. Keep writing!
PamFord Davis 04/23/12
Very nice. I can visualize this as a segment on "Little House on the Prairie," with Charles tenderly helping the young boy Albert...

Wing His Words!
Catherine Maher04/25/12
Enjoyable read and very touching. I too loved the little boy right away. Nice work.
C D Swanson 04/26/12
Congrats! God Bless~