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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Walk (07/20/06)

TITLE: The Long Walk


The late afternoon sunlight darted through the Venetian blinds and danced across the bed as Deanna gently rubbed her grandmother’s feet. Smoothing out the papery skin on her arch, she listened to the quiet pat of rubber soled shoes go by; her grandmother’s short rasping breaths the only other sound.

Thirty years of memories flitted in and out of her mind, and she remembered the first time her grandmother had wearily plopped her tired, aching feet into Deanna’s lap and asked for a rub.

“Are your feet tired, Gram?” seven year-old Deanna asked. Gram didn’t often admit to weariness, but she’d been cooking for Mrs. Lancaster and her family all day. They’d had enough to worry about, with the funeral and all, Gram had said.

“Oh, just a little, Sugar, but as long as I’m walking with Jesus, He helps me keep on going.” She leaned back and smiled. “That feels just wonderful. Thank you.”

Deanna wasn’t sure she understood how walking with Jesus could keep your feet from wearing out, but she took her grandmother at her word. She often imagined Jesus standing just a few feet away in His long white robe and a halo atop His head, following Gram wherever she went, keeping His eyes on her feet. He must be watching her feet so they wouldn’t get too tired, she surmised. She was sure that if anyone could look after her Gram’s feet, Jesus could.

She made a special effort to rub her feet often, after that day. Gram rarely rested once her chores were done. From cooking for the Lancaster’s when their father died, to going grocery shopping for Mrs. O’Connell when she was too sick to get out, Gram was always on the move. Deanna remembered asking her one time when she was twelve why Gram was always doing things for other people when she already had so much to do and her feet were so tired.

“The Lord didn’t give me these feet just for my own benefit, Sugar. He meant for me to use them to do His work. And my hands Honey, and whatever else I have, He has given me. And I’m to use them for His work. So when someone needs something, if I have it to give, Sugar, then He expects me to give it. And oh, how wonderful that He gave me you to rub my feet at the end of a hard-working week!”

And she understood then what she couldn’t when she was younger. Jesus hadn’t been walking around behind Gram, looking after her feet while she did her work. She’d been walking with Him, seeking to do His.

Silence brought Deanna out of her reverie. Realizing her grandmother no longer struggled to breathe she rose, gently laying aside her grandmother’s foot, and went to kiss her on her cheek. Her long walk was finally done. She prayed that the lesson her grandmother had taught her would stay with her forever. That she too, would seek to walk with Jesus, all the way to heaven.

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This article has been read 729 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Ann FitzHenry07/27/06
This is really lovely. The description and the ending gave it just the right touch. Well done!
Lynda Schultz 07/28/06
What a wonderful piece! You captured my attention right from the start with: "Deanna gently rubbed her grandmother’s feet". I have a friend whose ministry to the dying includes rubbing their feet. I don't fully understand why and how this is a blessings, but you have shown me that he isn't the only one who understands that it is. You took a great lesson from it too! Good writing.
Trina Courtenay07/28/06
One of my favorites this week. Well done.
Stephen Paynter07/31/06
I really enjoyed this entry; it is well written, and although the message is "up front" and "on the surface", it is none the less powerfully conveyed! (This is rare!) A poignant ending.
Well done!

Congratulations on getting a Davey too!
Joanne Sher 08/02/06
This is beautiful - and such a wonderful lesson. I LOVE that grandma - you did a wonderful job of portraying her!
Tracey Jackson08/02/06
Lovely piece. I love the child-like musings and the answers of wisdom from Gram. Good writing.
Trina Courtenay08/03/06
Congratulations Catherine on your placement this week. As I've already said above, this was one of my favorties and I'm so glad it won.

May the Lord continue to guide your quill as you write for the glory of HIM!

Bonnie Derksen08/03/06
Congratulations on your win, Catherine. I love your style and your portrayal of both grandma and granddaughter. Well done! I look forward to reading more. Keep writing.