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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Car Trip (07/18/05)

TITLE: Escape for a Morning
By janet rubin


I suppose I wasn’t really being honest with my husband. It was Friday and we were deciding which one of us should make the three hour drive to New Hampshire the next morning to retrieve our fourteen year old daughter, Chelsey, from Bible camp. Dave said he would be willing. I however, put on my most martyr-like face, and said, “Oh honey, you have so much to do. I don’t really mind going. Besides, Chelsey will want to talk all the way home about her week.” Dave imagined the three hours of non-stop teenage chatter and agreed that, perhaps I should go. He would stay home with our other two daughters, while I selflessly took the long drive to New Hampshire. The reason that I say I wasn’t being honest is that my motivation wasn’t so selfless. My dear husband thought I was being considerate of him, but really, I wanted to get the heck out of town! The truth is, sometimes a mommy just needs to be alone.

Early the next morning, just as the sun began to tickle the horizon with feathers of pink, I tip-toed out with a handful of my favorite CD’s and my Map quest directions in hand and hopped into my cruising vehicle of choice: my very cool blue minivan. I giggled thinking how excited I was to be going on this trip. The house was still quiet, Dave still contentedly drooling on his pillow. Soon enough it would be filled with the sounds of cartoons, chattering and cereal crunching, but I would be miles away. I almost burned rubber pulling out of the driveway.

I gassed up, and then drove to the donut shop for my coffee. Standing in line I thought, “Imagine, I can just order my coffee without any little voices begging for donuts and chocolate milk!” My vehicle and I properly fueled up; I hit the highway and popped in a CD. I turned it up and sang at the top of my lungs. No one interrupted or asked me to turn it down. I carried on like this for an hour and a half, thoroughly enjoying the lack of bickering, whining and inquiries about our ETA.

The blue sky was dotted with clouds, scattered like grazing sheep. Fields of wildflowers bordered the highway- Queen Anne’s’ Lace and Purple Loosestrife. I smiled, whizzing by a bunch of lazy looking cows. With the beauty of nature all around me, my thoughts turned to the Creator. “Oh course! What a perfect time to pray!” It seemed I hadn’t had time to pray in a month. Every day I intended to eventually sit and spend time with the Lord, yet night after night I fell into bed feeling a failure because I hadn’t gotten around to it. “Forgive me Lord,” I sighed.

For the rest of the trip, I talked to God, confessing, praising, and pouring out my heart. All too soon, Mount Monadnock, the campsite, came into view. (Not the biggest mountain in New England, but enough to inspire awe in the heart of a girl raised on the coast of Connecticut.) “It is beautiful Lord!” I said aloud, a sense of sadness coming over me with the realization that my time alone with Him was over. “Oh Lord, is this what I have to do to get alone with You? Leave the state for a morning? Please help me to do this at home.”

Soon Chelsey and I were reunited. One tired and sunburned girl chatted about camp as I began the journey home, telling tales of toilet-papering the girls cabin, eating icky camp food, torturing counselors and such. Being a mother, I decided to see what spiritual impact the week had on her; I began to probe, asking about the Bible teaching.
“Oh, we learned about Mary and Martha and how we all have to be more like Mary and make time to spend with Jesus even if we are like really busy and stuff. It was cool,” she said.
I smiled. “Yeah, that is cool,” I said. It seemed that God was reminding me that life wouldn’t get any less hectic. There would always be much to do, but I could choose to sit at His feet just the way Mary did. Chelsey talked until she finally drifted off to sleep, her head propped on her duffel bag. Once again I passed the lazy cows and thanked God for driving with me to New Hampshire.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Gretchen Paxton07/26/05
loved your descriptions, I have done a similiar drive while visiting a friend in Boston and hiking that same mountain. Beautiful piece, excellent flow, great job!
Shirley Thomas07/26/05
You've written an excellent article as well as wonderfully reminding us of how precious that alone time with our heavenly Father can be. Thank you for sharing your talent.
Nina Phillips07/27/05
A respite for mom, how grand! Thank you for sharing. I can relate to that. God bless ya, littlelight
Beth Muehlhausen07/30/05
Very descriptive! Full of good lessons, too. Good job. I've been in your shoes. :-)
Suzanne R08/01/05
I bet many readers could identify with your piece! Well done on your win. May you have many more such little retreats in a busy life!
Crista Darr08/02/05
What a wonderful story! I enjoyed it very much.
Deborah Porter 08/02/05
Janet, this was such a treat of a read (for any mother!) Congratulations on placing in the Editors' Choice awards and also on your 2nd place win in the Level 2 Champion Challenge Awards. Well done! With the Editors' Choice win, it's time for you to move up to Level 3. With love, Deb (Challenge Coordinator)