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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of “A Stitch in Time Saves Nine” (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (01/03/08)

TITLE: Running in Circles


What is the most important source of renewal and strength in our Christian life?


We are delegated to self-reliance without it. Living live in the fast lane without prayer wastes much of our energy and productivity. The daily tasks that need done may get completed. We may have our kids at music lessons on time and supper on the table, but what have we really accomplished if God is not part of our day?

Have you seen the habit-trail cages designed for hamsters? The pet shops are full of extra accessories like “luxury penthouse lookouts”. Everything a child can imagine for his engineering needs. But, have we really counted the cost before loading all those bulky boxes into the back seat of the mini-van?

WARNING: The miles of tubing are much more fun to construct than clean. AND: No mater how elaborately you design all those “must have” luxury items the hamster will prefer the repetitive motion of the wheel . . . getting him nowhere. AND: No matter how much Vaseline you use, the wheel squeaks.

GUARANTEE: You will wish the family pet was a fish instead of a hamster by the middle of the first night.

My best mornings start while the house is still quiet . . . alone with God. Those precious moments are moments well spent.

By the time the dog needs to go out and my younger daughter is ready to begin our day of homeschool I’m full of energy and excited for the challenges of the day.

But, that isn’t the way all of my days begin and I’m sure not yours either.

“Ring . . . ring . . . ring . . .”

My hand reaches for the phone as I try to clear my sleepy head. (I failed to mention how I overslept and should have already been up and around by the time the phone rang.)

“Mom . . . sobs . . . I’m changing majors.”

Silence followed by more sobs.

“I can’t handle . . . sob . . . the pressure.”

By the time I’ve calmed my college sophomore, and she is dreaming once again about the wonderful elementary teacher she’s becoming, time is ticking away. My older daughter is bubbly instead of sobbing and I’m emotionally drained.

Instead of taking a deep breath and slipping off by myself for the few moments left for prayer, I rush into the business at hand. Reasoning, I’ll find time later, but time never comes. Other days the same early phone call would only be a mild distraction, but this day I’m winging it on my own.

By the end of the day I’m exhausted. My patience is frayed, and I have to ask forgiveness for my short temper . . . more then once.

Spiritually I’ve been running around in circles . . . getting nowhere. How much frustration could have been foiled by spending those remaining early moments in prayer!

WARNING: It’s easier to take time for prayer than to suffer through a day running in circles.

© 2008

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This article has been read 494 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Joy Mounce01/10/08
Great reminder to not leave out prayer! I enjoyed reading this and being reminded myself. Thanks for writing!
Debbie Wistrom01/10/08
While circumstances are different, I could identify. Thanks for the reminder. Keep up the good words.
Temple Miller01/10/08
Great metaphor. I loved the warning and guarantee!
Jan Ackerson 01/11/08
Oh, good job--you have an engaging voice, and the tie-in with the hamster wheel was very good.
c clemons01/12/08
Good job.
Joanne Sher 01/18/08
Congratulations, Teresa, on placing 13th in level 2 with this entry. Great job!