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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Potluck (Meal or Gathering) Deadline 7-26-12 @ 10 AM NY Time (07/19/12)

TITLE: Home at Last
By Janice Quimby


Sue froze as she watched her 93 year old father choking and gasping for air. “Oh Dad,” she exclaimed, managing to spring into action. She swatted him on the back and raised his arm, but to no avail. Sue gasped when she saw him turning blue. “Oh, Lord,” she muttered, “What can I do?” As she stood helpless, her father fell to the floor. She stretched him out and reached into his mouth hoping to pull out what he was choking on. She pushed on his chest, attempting to dislodge the food. Frantically, she continued working on him until she realized it was useless. “Oh God,” she sobbed, “Why did I allow him to talk me into not pureeing his meat.”


Fred looked around in wonder at a new and wonderful world. The brightness of the colors was beyond comparison to anything he could relate to. He gazed in amazement at the smoothness of his skin, previously full of wrinkles. He skipped and hopped like a child, giving thanks that he would never again see that wheelchair he was confined to for eight long years

The wife he had relished for 58 years ran to greet him with outstretched arms. He grabbed her and swung her around. To his amazement, she was more youthful and beautiful than when he first met her.

A sea of people was waiting to welcome him home, but there was one who stood out from all the rest. Strangely, He was the only one who had any kind of blemish. Both hands and feet had holes in them. Fred instinctively knew that He kept those as a reminder of the life he had given for all who would trust Him. Jesus and His people valued those like a great trophy.

Fred stood in awe as this wonderful friend embraced him. “You have been faithful in serving me on earth,” Jesus proclaimed. “You’ll be enthralled at the exciting work I have for you here. Go now and enjoy your reunion with family and friends.”

Fred had the time of his life, partying with old acquaintances. They shared memories and laughed uproariously recalling silly things they had done together.

Several hours later, someone unique approached him. Was this a person or creature? He wasn’t sure, but it was clear from his appearance that he loved and served Jesus. “How good to see you home,” he said. “I’m Zoar. I was with you in your journey through life to guide and protect you.”

Fred gulped. “So it was you who mysteriously prevented that wreck when my car was out of control on that icy road, as it was sliding headlong into a semi?”

“Yes,” Zoar replied. “It wasn’t your time. But now I have come with a very important chore for you. Your son, Ned, may be drawing close to trusting Jesus. You must pray for him.”

Fred starred at Zoar in wide-eyed confusion. “But . . . but, I thought prayer was for on earth. We can pray here?”

“Certainly, you can. Haven’t you read how Jesus lives forever to intercede for His people? You also can pray. You spent many hours praying for him while on earth. Your prayer here can be even more effective.”

Fred immediately went to prayer for his dearly loved son, and many of his friends and relatives joined him. He was surprised at how easily the words flowed. He had enjoyed many prayer meetings but none could compare with this.


At the funeral, Ned wept bitterly. Sue struggled to comfort him. “Ned,” she exclaimed. “Our father is now free of his wheelchair. He’s in perfect health. He served the Lord faithfully, and now he’s enjoying his heavenly reward.”

“But . . . I . . . Sue, I was so rude to him. I knew he wanted to see me, but I couldn’t stand to see him in his condition. Now he’s gone and I want so desperately to be able to tell him, one last time, that I love him.”

“I think the greatest honor you could give him would be to place your trust in Jesus. Then, you would one day have that opportunity to proclaim your love for him.”

After the funeral, Sue met with him again, and shared for hours. At last, he bowed his head and received Jesus.


As Zoar shared with Fred and his prayer group about the rebirth there was again a great celebration in heaven.

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This article has been read 233 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Debra Burchett07/26/12
This was a wonderful turn of events from the beginning. I like the representation of Heaven. Keep it up,
C D Swanson 07/27/12
So much depth and intensity to this piece. A lot of meaning and messages sprinkled through-out this well written entry.

I loved the ending. Great job. God Bless~
Helen Curtis07/28/12
This is a lovely story with a beautiful ending.

May I offer just one bit of red ink? I felt that the opening paragraph was a little unusual, particularly the last line. When the MC says/thinks "I should have pureed your meat" it conjured up images of a black comedy, which I'm pretty sure you weren't meaning to do :-)

That's where it can be really helpful to have someone else read over the story, not just from a grammar perspective, but also to ask if anything didn't quite gel with them.

You have a lovely writing style; I especially love the concept of praying for loved ones in heaven! I wasn't sure about it at first, but your use of scripture to back it up made sense and was a wonderful revelation! Well done, keep writing and learning and being a wonderful blessing to others with your talents!
Laura Manley07/29/12
Your entry was unique in the sense that it had three levels; the passing of Fred, Fred's arrival in Heaven and then the third part with Ned. It came all together in a very smooth way. I think, however, I would have liked to have had you incorporate a little more of the topic at hand. I think the reader assumes Fred is at a potluck but that is the only mention. I think you have a very unique way of writing and am impressed with that technique. Nicely done.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 07/29/12
This is a fascinating story. The beginning paragraph was wonderful and grabbed my attention immediately. I think some may think it is weak on topic, but I see instead of a potluck of food, you went into a different direction and did a potluck of different characters in Heaven. I absolutely love that you showed that pray still happens in heaven. It makes our relationship with Jesus on earth even more personal.