Home Read What's New Join
My Account Login

Read Our Devotional             2016 Opportunities to be Published             Detailed Navigation

The HOME for Christian writers! The Home for Christian Writers!
The Official Writing Challenge



how it works
submission rules
guidelines for
choosing a level


submit your entry
read current entries
read past entries
challenge winners

Our Daily Devotional HERE
Place it on your site or
receive it daily by email.



how it works   Submit

Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Guard Your Heart (06/08/12)

TITLE: The Pain in Mary's Heart


Mary always protected her heart. At fifty-five, she had been hurt many times in her life and she vowed years ago that she wouldn’t allow anyone—man or woman-- to hurt her the way her father hurt her when she was little. Her eyes darkened as she recalled her father’s words: “Mary, you don’t try hard enough. You are too wishy-washy. You need to be stronger at school and with your friends. If you don’t, you will not get anywhere.”

She was only nine at the time and after he spoke those words, she never felt close to him or felt any love from him. The pain was still so strong from those words that every time she remembered them, tears filled her eyes. The very saddest thing about that incident was that he died several years later from a heart attack. The heart attack happened so quickly that there was no time to say I’m sorry and no time to say, I love you.

May stood about five feet eight inches tall, was a medium build and still attractive and young looking. Her husband, Bill, stood over six feet tall and from the very moment he met her, he loved her and seldom gave her a cross word or was critical in what she did at home or at work.

Working at Belinda’s Beauty Shop was something Mary enjoyed more than anything; except for God and her husband, Bob. It was at Belinda’s Beauty Shop where she shined. The customers liked her and she was known in that small town in Ohio as giving some of the best haircuts around.

It was her husband, the good Lord and working at Belinda’s that built up her confidence and made her feel loved and strong. Why she was feeling so positive that she was thinking about having a beauty shop in her own home. There was plenty of room and Bob cleared out a spare room in the back of their home and said that anytime she wanted to make her dream come true, it was fine with him.

With her shoulder length brown hair and a rosy complexion, Mary felt good about life and had finally put away her negative feelings about her father. That is until one day in June.

She had just walked in around nine in the morning and it was a day that she would be working on Martha Pincrust’s hair. Martha was in her 60s but acted like she was over 80. She didn’t like Mary but she put up with her because she fixed her hair the way she wanted it—tight to her head and tucked away from her face. With a round face and glasses that did little to enhance her looks, Martha was a plain looking woman and at times, severe and unkind.

Martha walked in and at that time there was only Belinda, another customer and Mary. “Good morning, Mary! Good to see that you’re here and on time. You know how I dislike a person who keeps me waiting. By the way, I meant to tell you that you did a poor job the last time I was in here. I don’t think you tried hard enough. Please don’t make that mistake today!”

Remembering what her father said to her so long ago, she replied, “Excuse me, Martha but I remember you saying the last time that you liked what I did. If you are unhappy with my work, then I suggest you find someone else to do your hair. I feel confident that I have given you professional results time after time. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have work to do!”

Martha grunted a “Well! I never!” and left quickly.

Mary just smiled, went about her business and felt relieved that Martha was out the door and no longer her customer. And, the best part of all was that her heart felt joyous and free!

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be right now. CLICK HERE

JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.

This article has been read 258 times
Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 06/17/12
This would make a "good novel" - the transition of Mary. I hope the MC opens that "beauty shop" her hubby has made "ready" for Mary.

Nice job with this. God bless~
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 06/20/12
I really enjoyed this story. Your MC is someone I could relate to easily. I often fear I'm not good enough either.

My only suggestion would be to do some more showing. For example instead of telling us she enjoyed her job show us with something like Mary started her workday with a quick prayer of thanksgiving then she greeted each customer with a smile and a cup of coffee. It's a little thing but can help the reader feel connected with the MC.

I loved the ending. I thought it was brilliant how she stood up for herself while still being polite. What a wonderful example. You also did a great job of covering the topic in a unique and interesting way.