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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Deep End (03/06/14)

TITLE: Stolen Joy
By June Thomas


The warm sun rays peeps through Natalie's window. She smiles, stretches and opens her eyes. Today will be a great day. She enthusiastically gets out of bed to greet the day. "Thank you Lord" she exclaims as she heads to the bathroom to freshen up.

"Natalie, let’s go" shouts her dad as they hustle out of the house. In the car Natalie takes a deep breath in anticipation for what's ahead. A little happy and a little scared at the same time.

They arrived at the pool house. "You are early Natalie, are you ready?” greeted Natalie's swimming instructor. Already standing at the edge of the pool Natalie responds in a very quiet and hesitant voice "yes". She lied, fear had gripped her heart tight now. The shallow pool looked really good now, it was what she was good at, and it was what she knew.

Natalie's dad realizing that she was afraid, sits down by her side at the edge of the pool. "Natalie" he says "you have been preparing for this for months. It’s not what you are used to. This is a new challenge in your life that you have decided to face. Just like becoming a Christian. When you started it was easy because you had Jesus. When challenges came you faced them head on because you had Jesus.

Now the challenge before you right now is fear and not your ability, because you know you can do it. God has not given you a spirit of fear but of love and a sound mind. And never forget you still have Jesus".

Still fearful but now feeling encouraged, Natalie stood up, hugged her dad and looked into her fear. A twenty feet deep, blue, monster of a man made swimming pool. And then it hit her, man made this pool not God, therefore it can be conquered and I still have Jesus. She realized that she allowed her joy to be stolen because she was excited about this for months.

She smiled, then jumped in the deep end of the pool. When she came out of the water she realized something profound. The deep end of the pool was only six feet deep, fear had blinded her.

A rush of excitement overwhelmed her as she realized what she had just accomplished. The deep end was not just the depth of the water in the pool but how deep she had allowed fear to take root within her.

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This article has been read 107 times
Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 03/13/14
Great job with this well written entry.

God bless~
Bonnie Bowden 03/13/14
Great message about facing your fears.
June Thomas03/13/14
Thank you very much for your kind comments, it is really encouraging.
Thank you
Judy Sauer 03/14/14
Fantastic job on this article. The father-daughter exchange was very heartwarming. It made me wish I had a dad like that.

I especially appreciated how you were able to pull together our faith in Christ and how fear interferes with our relationship with him. Your description of the exuberance that Natalie felt as she conquers your fear when realizing that the pool was man-made so she could conquer it was powerful. Great job. Keep writing.
Larry Whittington03/16/14
Building the emotion of fear so readers also feel it makes this kind of writing delicate. Find words, facial expressions and body language of the "victim" of fear that translate "fear" to the reader.

The transition from the shallow end to the deep end could have been "step by step" from the shallow to the deep and let fear grow with each step.

It was good to use such a simple scene to show how fear can develop for no apparent reason but also how fear can be overcome.

Nice article.