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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Write something in the YOUNG ADULT or TEEN genre (06/07/07)

TITLE: Mistakes
By Joseph Jay


The Cadet from West Point had not shown up yet? Joseph paused, and unloaded the morning snacks in the youth kitchen, and made his way to Contemporary Worship services, to join his wife. Upon arrival, while everyone around him was praising, and worshipping, he thought of the kids unsupervised back in the youth building. He whispered to his wife the circumstance, and without hesitation she said, "You've got to do something". A kiss on her cheek, and Joseph headed back to the youth building. The 70 yard walk was painfully reminding him of all the years of sports, and the artificial knee that just wouldn't bend that morning. Walking into the youth building, Joseph noticed a group of teens that he did not recognize. He made his way through the double doors, and was instantly aware that the person who was suppose to teach these teens, had not shown up. I was grateful that the teens sitting around, and playing pool, had already helped themselves to the donuts that I had put in the kitchen. Automatically, I thanked them for helping themselves, and immediately apologized for the scheduled speaker who had failed to show up. It was suppose to be a West Point Cadet, and now my job was to make sure these teens were not disappointed.
My name, Joseph Matthew, my ministry, to be a servant for God. My mission this morning, like any other Sunday morning is to get the message of God's love, grace, and salvation through the sacrificing of His only Son, across to a group of 6th through 12th graders. My mission source, our Creator, and His authoritative words recorded in our mission handbook, 'The Holy Bible'.
As my group began to take their seats, I coaxed them to all come up front, so I wouldn't have to yell at the ones in the back. Actually, what I was doing was getting them up close and personal, so I could look them in the eye, as I taught the lesson.
I explained that there was a miscommunication somewhere, and they were stuck with me to teach their lesson that morning. I got alot of smiles, and had taught them before, so they knew what to expect.
Our lesson was the story of Joshua, and the fall of Jericho. I started us off with a prayer, asking God to open our minds, hearts, and ears as His words penetrated our souls. There were alot of questions, as we dove into the Who, What, Where, When, and How of the lesson. Once we made our way to the conclusion, I emphasized the importance of some of the Israelites acting unfaithfully to some of the devoted objects taken. This is when I compared our own rebellions, or mistakes that cause a strain on our relationship with God.
The topic of mistakes quickly began to take over, and I got everyones attention as I explained how God had allowed me to live through certain things, so He could use me as a warning to them. There attention was respectful, as they listened to, and hopefully heeded my warnings about drugs, parties, teen pregnancies, divorce, bullying, drop outs, and everything else that Satan will try and expose them to during their teen years. The Holy Spirit led me through the class, and He also helped me survive the mistakes, so that I can be a surviving Warrior for His Glory, and not mine.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Kristen Hester06/14/07
Joseph is a servant of God and the teens are blessed to have such a willing teacher and example. God bless him (you?) as he serves God by leading this group.

I enjoyed the story as I have been called on to teach at the last minute and understand those feelings. You switched from third person to first person half way through. Perhaps this was on purpose, but I would suggest staying with the same POV in such a short story. I liked first person, but both work. Good job.
Joanne Sher 06/15/07
Very good lesson for us all. This might read a bit better if you made some of your longer paragraphs a bit shorter, and put spaces between your paragraphs. I enjoyed this!
Catrina Bradley 06/16/07
Great storytelling. You made Joseph very likable, good characterization!. I echo the advice about the point of view and the spaces. You've got great potential, keep writing!
Jacquelyn Horne06/19/07
A good lesson here. Separating into more paragraphs would help. Also there are a few misused words that the spell check will not fing. (there instead of their for instance). This is easy to fix with editing. The message is very good.