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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Lock (03/06/06)

TITLE: First Prayer
By Caitlynn Lowe


A lone tear rolled down Tala’s cheek as she gazed up at the clear autumn sky. It was beautiful and terrifying to her all at once. Its vast openness seemed to clear a path straight through to Heaven, making her feel small and unprotected. This was no strange phenomenon to her, however; things that seemed especially “open” always made her nervous. She had spent so much of her life being locked up inside herself that these things seemed dangerous and unsettling. And, just like most danger, they repelled her and drew her in simultaneously.

Today the sky seemed particularly fascinating to her. As she stared up at it, she wondered about Who might be staring back. She had always known there was Someone up there; she wouldn’t have survived being bounced around from foster home to foster home—not to mention practically being labeled an outcast everywhere she went—had there not been Someone watching over her. She had remembered the many times she had been carried on the wings of love when she was a little girl...wings not belonging to any person, but to Someone else. But she had never known quite who that Someone was. At least, not until recently.

Recently, Tala’s life had taken an unexpected twist. Because recently, the boy with the cornfield-yellow hair and the joyful blue eyes had starting talking to her about Jesus. Recently, that boy had begun to convince her to unlock her heart to Christ.

Scarier still was that, recently, Tala longed to unlock her heart to that same boy as well.

The message of Christianity made sense to her. After all, why shouldn’t it? She already knew there had to be something more. And while all the other religions she had heard of had plenty of writings and beliefs and followers, something about Christianity seemed...different. She couldn’t quite pick out what it was, and yet she knew it was there all the same. It rang of truth, it rang of that same warm feeling of love she had experienced time after time when she was a little girl. And deep down Tala knew the truth that every soul knows: Jesus is the Lord, the Savior, the only begotten Son of God. And while He may not be “safe” in the earthly sense of the word, He is good, and He is trustworthy enough to unlock every secret of every heart in every person.

Yet this boy...Well, Tala had her doubts. Faith in God was one matter. Faith in humanity was another. Could he be trusted? Would he lose interest in her, lose patience? She had secrets, secrets that needed to be protected from everyone but the truly trustworthy. If she allowed herself to get too close to him, allowed herself to unlock her heart to him, it could spell disaster. But if she pushed him away...Neither outcome seemed advantageous.

Tala sighed as her head began to pound. One thing was for sure: she wasn’t going to figure this all out in one afternoon. She might still be undecided as to whether or not she should unlock her heart to the boy, but she understood now that she should at least unlock it to God.

And with that realization, she closed her eyes, bowed her head, and prayed her first of many prayers.

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This article has been read 890 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 03/14/06
I like this! Very tender and sweet.
Virginia Gorg03/16/06
Very nice. I would have liked some dialogue - possible expansion here :)
Dara Sorensen03/16/06
I enjoyed it! I really like the description of the boy with the cornfield yellow hair!

Good job!
Marie Hearty 03/16/06
I liked how you described the sky and the feelings your character felt while looking up. I too have felt an amazing sense of God's presence in the clouds and it is awesome. Your story reminded me of a particular day. I also liked how the character knew deep down that Christianity was different than all the other religions that she had tried. I do think that God has made it that when we are told of his Son, we know; and then they choice is up to us. Great going.
Jessica Schmit03/16/06
Very well done!
Kurt Youngdale03/16/06
Were you in foster care or do you know someone who was in foster care? Parts of your story didn't ring true to me. Perhaps you were trying to describe too much and couldn't quite do it because of the word limitation.
I did enjoy reading this story however.
Amy Michelle Wiley 03/27/06
I love the discription in this. Good job!