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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Conversation (face to face) (10/07/10)

TITLE: Words Fitly Spoken
By Fern Brown


Words Fitly Spoken

The feeble, middle-aged lady lay quietly in her bed, tears streaming down her face. "I’m not old enough to feel this badly," she thought. "Dear God," she prayed weakly, "what is wrong with me? I can hardly get up and there’s so much to do. Please help."

Margie heard her faithful husband coming to check on her again. Jasper didn't know how to handle her; she was always a strong, capable woman until a month before. Many times he conversed with God about his dear wife. The doctor prescribed medication, calling it depression. That was not part of her vocabulary, so she continued to suffer. Through past years, she comforted and showed compassion to friends and loved ones in their trials. However, she had no solution for her own problems. Neither did Jasper.

The phone rang before Jasper reached his wife's side. "Hello," she heard his quiet voice say. "Yes, she is about the same. Thank you. I'll tell her you called."

Jasper sat on the edge of the bed, holding Margie's hand, willing strength into her languid body. "Sharon called. She’ll be here in a few minutes."

Margie smiled weakly as she pictured her dear friend Sharon, a classy lady with an uplifting spirit.

Jasper hurried to answer the ringing doorbell. Margie heard several voices speaking as he returned to the bedroom. “Honey, Sharon brought other friends, too. Do you feel like sitting in the living room to visit?”

Making her as comfortable as possible on the couch, he excused himself, letting Margie know he would be close if she needed him for anything.

Encouraging words flowed from Sharon’s mouth. “Margie,” her winning smile lit up her face as she began. “We waited too long to visit, because we thought you’d be better by now. We’re so sorry you’ve been suffering alone all this time. This has been a sad, emotional year for you, especially since your mother went to be with the Lord. Then your only daughter married and moved away and your husband lost his job. That takes a toll on anyone.”

Jennifer, an extremely shy young lady, spoke softly. “You taught about Job in Sunday school class, telling us how important it is to be the right kind of friends. Though he was physically and emotionally drained, Job’s comrades ridiculed him. They told him he had answers for others, but let his own struggles defeat him.”

Jodie interjected sweetly, “And you explained how we need others. No matter how wise and strong a man is, there comes a time when he needs to rely on friends. Job didn’t ask for his trial and you didn’t either. God allowed him to suffer loss of family, friends and possessions for our benefit. Your difficulties are for a purpose, too.”

Nicole, normally witty, spoke in subdued tones. “We don’t come with accusations that you brought this on yourself, Margie, like Job’s companions did. We love you and want to show you how special you are to us. Your godly testimony has blessed each of us in one way or another.”

Emotions of gratitude engulfed Margie, as she wept. “Thank you for your kind words.”

Sharon spoke again, changing the atmosphere. “We brought you some lunch. You always emphasize how important it is to feed people, because that’s what Jesus did. Today, Margie, we brought your favorites – fish and mashed ‘taters’. Are you ready?”

“I believe I could eat fish and mashed ‘taters’ any day of the week,” Margie smiled through her tears. “It’s so good of you to do this for Jasper and me. Did you bring enough for yourselves, too?”

“We did, indeed,” they chorused. “We’re always hungry,” Nicole laughed infectiously.

Chitchat, light-hearted comments, joking and laughing filled the rest of the visit. When they left, Jasper asked Margie, “Are you worn out, Dear?”

“Actually, I feel stronger than I’ve felt in weeks. A kind husband and sweet friends are what the Great Physician ordered. Good words make a vast difference in our lives. Though the ladies didn’t accuse me, their encouraging conversation showed that I’m letting my emotions govern me. I’ll be rejuvenated in no time.”

Proverbs 25:11KJV A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.
Proverbs 27:9 KJV Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: so doth the sweetness of a man’s friend by hearty counsel.

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This article has been read 377 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Misti Chancellor10/22/10
I really like the verses at the end of this story, and how the story portrays what it means to be a true friend. Thank you for sharing this with us.
Mildred Sheldon10/22/10
It always help when friends go that extra mile. I enjoyed this very much. Thank you for sharing.
Philippa Geaney 10/22/10
Lovely story. Since Job's friends were too opinionated I will simply say, well done.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/23/10
Oh I can relate to your MC. I've said before that Imtoo young to feel this old. How wonderful to have friends to gather and support her during a difficult time. Nicely written.
Jan Ackerson 10/24/10
Very sweet!

I'd have liked a bit more characterization--maybe one or two less characters so that I could get to know them better?

I'm well aware of the devastating effects of depression, and you protrayed the condition very well.