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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: The Game of Life (09/11/08)

TITLE: Journal Entries
By Lisa Keck


Laurel put the last box of her mother’s things in the van. She took one last look around the house she once called home. She hadn’t lived there since going off to college. In the past 6 months she practically lived there again. She was there often to take care of and be with her ailing mother. The trip to the drugstore took her right past the old church, the place she found strength to live out the dare Ivy had given her.

Camp seemed a long way off now and it had been challenging to live in the truth. The house belonged to her now but that’s all it was—a house. With no one living in it this past month, the label of home had frayed at the edges and finally fallen off. The For Sale sign would go up tomorrow.

Laurel locked the door and drove home to her husband and kids; away from her past and back to her present. She would have to go through her mother’s things again and either pack, display or donate items. The extra furniture went on the patio, all except the piano which Laurel couldn’t play but couldn’t part with either. Before the spinal cord injury stilled her hands, Mom had played songs that celebrated her Savior.

About a week later, Laurel noticed her journals in a box. Perhaps recent life events made her feel nostalgic. After all, where the family of her birth was concerned, the past was all she had left. For whatever reason she took time out of her busy schedule to read, finding a poem she wrote in college:

Games of Chance and Circumstance

Life is a game of chance,
Depending on the roll of the dice.
I rolled snakes eyes,
Loneliness filled my soul.
Life is a game of chance,
Depending on the cut of the cards.
I found the joker
Who laughed and called me fool.
Life changes with circumstance,
So I rolled the dice again.
This time I rolled seven.
Peace floods my soul.
Life changes with circumstance,
So I cut the cards again.
The King of Hearts was waiting
To love me, call me friend.

Laurel recognized the date as being near the end of her freshman year of college. It had been the most challenging of her life thus far. At the beginning of the year she was ready to walk away from that old camp commitment. In fact she did stop living in the truth for a time but somewhere along the way had found her way back to it.

Now as she put the musty old book of memories away she thought about how the game of life has played out since. Sure some cards were dealt that sent her back to square one. Many times she felt stuck in molasses swamp. Sometimes just playing the game gave her a headache.

Her parents had taught her to be a good sport so she rejoiced when they all made it safely Home. She’d get there when her time on the board was over but until then she’d walk with The King. There’d be more chances but The King’s roar was echoing loader than the joker’s taunts. No matter the circumstances she’d follow Him.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Anita van der Elst09/18/08
Beautifully told! I love the references to different parts of game playing like "good sport" about the MC's family being "safely home" & other phrases like "the label of home had frayed at the edges and finally fallen off".
Verna Cole Mitchell 09/18/08
Your poem from college years fits in well in describing your choices in your game of life.
Marlene Austin09/21/08
Nic entry. Good writing. :)