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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Postcards (08/29/05)

TITLE: Wish You Were Here (i)
By Jess Godwin


“Yeah, I wish I was there too” I muttered as I paid for the postcard I was buying to send to my friend Tanya back in the States. I looked at my feet, dirty from the sandy streets and wished once again for a hot shower.

The postcards in Tony’s Market showed the Four Seasons. Everyone wanted to stay there. It was beautiful. The pictures on the postcard showed paradise—palm trees at sunset and white sandy beaches. I wasn’t staying anywhere like that. Who wouldn’t want to stay at a five star resort in the Caribbean? But I was staying at a mint green school with a tin roof and yellow doors. My friends and I were sleeping on air mattresses that filled up with ash and dust. Nope, you wouldn’t see the pictures of good old Prospect Primary gracing any postcards. There was no way I’d wish anyone here. All I wanted was a real bed and a shower with no dirt in the floor and good drainage. Real milk in my coffee would have been nice too, but the powdered milk wasn’t that bad. I could live with it for a few more days. I thought about what I would be writing on the cards.

“Dear Tanya…Can I swim home? It’s bright here. The sun comes up a four am, but it’s ok. My luggage is stuck in San Juan, so I smell like a boy. I’ve been wearing the same shirt for two days...Who am I kidding? No one wants to read about this trip! I don’t want to read about this trip!”

I put the cards in my purse and walked to the van. I climbed in and prayed that no one could smell me. At least I had my bath items with me. I could take a shower and wash my hair, and I was practically bathing in my perfume. Still, there was something about putting on dirty clothes after a shower that killed that nice clean feeling.

We got back to the school and everyone got ready for bed. The next day was going to be the biggest one yet.

“Four am and as bright as noon? I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy” I grumbled as I staggered into the kitchen for coffee.

After my coffee, I was in a better mood. The group of kids I was working with showed up and we got down to business.

“Ok Guys, you know that Jesus died on the cross, but do you know why?”

“Because we sin” one of my favorite little guys answered. His daddy taught him well.

“That’s right. Everyone sins. The Bible tells us that all of us have sinned, and so we need Jesus. But, we have to choose to follow Him. If we want to live with Him forever in Heaven, we have to ask Him into our hearts.”

“Teacher, I want to ask Jesus into my heart.” I looked up and saw one of my girls standing in front of me.

With tears in my eyes, I led her in prayer.

“Dear Tanya, You wouldn’t believe what it’s like here. Today, I got to lead one of my girls to Christ. It was so amazing! The weather is beautiful. I’m really going to this place when I come home. Wish you were here!”

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This article has been read 691 times
Member Comments
Member Date
dub W09/06/05
A quick edit and this one is a keeper. Good flow and creative work.
Jan Ackerson 09/07/05
I loved the change in your protagonist's heart. Perhaps if you made it clear early on that she was on a missions trip?
Shari Armstrong 09/07/05
Attitude is everything. A great story. One thing I noticed -the putting dirty clothes on after a shower -it made me think of how we're clean after accepting Christ, but we tend to put our "dirty clothes" -old habbits -back on)
Julianne Jones09/08/05
Great writing and a great message. I suspect there's a word of two missing in one of the last lines otherwise I've missed the meaning of "I’m really going to this place when I come home". Keep up th good work!
Debra Brand09/08/05
Good unique story. Tighten it up.
Karen Ward09/08/05
I was reading and thinking - where is this going, there's not much time left...but you didn't need much, the attitude shift and ending were great. God Bless, Karen
Anita Neuman09/08/05
Too bad about the word limit - I would've enjoyed reading even more of this. Good job!
Tammy Johnson09/08/05
Really enjoyed this. I liked her "mental" postcards and then the actual one she wrote after her perspective changed. I agree, a good edit and it's good to go!
Crista Darr09/10/05
Hooray! A lovely story. All the suffering seems tiny after the great reward. Well done little sister.