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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Pastor (11/30/06)

TITLE: God's Perfect Timing
By Valora Otis


The sound of beer bottles hitting the outside of his door startled him. Josh knew it was best to sit and wait it out. After saying "goodnight" and "be safe" to his co-workers he had left to enjoy the quiet of his room across the hall. That's when things got ugly. He could hear barbs like, "Stupid Christian doesn't know how to drink," and "He's in there reading his bible again," were muttered by slurred drunken voices. An empty bottle shattered as it hit his door. He turned to finish his half written letter to his wife and kids.

Hi Sweetie,

Things here are going just fine. I miss you terribly though. Make sure you give those boys a big hug from their daddy and tell them to be good. I know it's hard for you being there alone with our little ones. I'm sorry that I haven't been able to send much money yet. But as soon as I get paid I'll send it all home.

Alaska is beautiful! I met a Pastor of a local church who owns a small plane. He took me for a ride. He's a great guy; we were instant friends. I saw a Kodiak bear and a whale as I flew over the beach. Don't worry, Nicole, I have a healthy fear of those bears. We had one walk right down the road between the cannery buildings the other day. Men were posted at either end armed to the gills, just in case. The smell of salmon brings bears in. I'm always looking over my shoulder to be safe, so don't worry.

Tell the boys that I saw my first porcupine last week! He came in the shop as I was welding. I looked down and there he was! He was trying to get away from the sparks I was making, grumbling and fussing like a little old man. It was really quite comical. I got the broom and guided him out through the door. Several dozen quills were left behind. I gave them to an Inuit lady who makes jewelry out of them.

It's pretty lonely here without you. I pray for you every day. My only comfort is in knowing that you are never alone. Heavenly Father is always with you to guide and protect you--as He is for me as well.

I was grateful for the letter you sent this week. I've worn it out from reading it so often. It will be hard to be apart this Christmas. To have our Pastor show up with so much food and gifts for the boys must have been like manna from heaven! I have to admit that I cried with relief as I read your words. Prayers are answered, honey. I've been on my knees everyday praying that you would have enough food. I hated leaving you with so little. This job is a blessing and a burden. Things will be better soon--for all of us. Please tell Pastor Newberry that I said 'thank-you'. I'm constantly amazed how Father has such perfect timing. Now I know I can handle anything that comes my way. May God bless you and keep you my dear one. I love you!

Yours Eternally,

Josh set his pen down. The noises suddenly ceased. Something heavy was being shoved up against the door. He leapt to the door and tried to open it. Someone had blocked it. He was trapped in his room again. He pressed his forehead to the door.

Why won' they leave me alone?

Josh wished that his Bishop was there to help ease his burden.

He knelt by his bed to pray.

He heard new voices in the hallway. Doors were slamming as something heavy slid away. A kind voice spoke outside his door that he didnít recognize.

"Brother Davis? Are you okay in there?"

Josh tried the knob again. It worked, the door swung open with a shudder. In the hallway stood his new friend Pastor Thompson and two young missionaries.

"Your wife called the mission home yesterday, Brother Davis," the youngest man beamed. "She had a dream that you might get hurt today. It took us all day to get here, the river isn't frozen enough to cross yet. So we found a great guy who just happened to have a private plane. He said he knew you."

Father's perfect timing was amazing!


KJV Jeremiah 3:15

And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

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This article has been read 944 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Amy Michelle Wiley 12/09/06
Great story! A few minor grammatical errors here and there, but great read.
Edy T Johnson 12/09/06
Your picture-painted writing is just amazing to me. You give us such a view with so few words, as in:

"Tell the boys that I saw my first porcupine last week! He came in the shop as I was welding. I looked down and there he was! He was trying to get away from the sparks I was making, grumbling and fussing like a little old man...."

I love it. And, this is a good story all the way through. Thank God for His pastor-shepherds, looking out for the sheep of His pasture.
Ann FitzHenry12/10/06
I really thought this was a good story! I liked how you incorporated the letter into the body of the story. I agree with the other commenters--the beginning was gripping. I enjoyed reading it very much.
Catrina Bradley 12/11/06
Great descriptive writing - I also like the letter part of your story. I feel for those who must leave home and hearth to find work.
Joanne Sher 12/12/06
Love this slice of life! I felt like I was right there. What wonderful providence in so many incidents! Great read.
Leigh MacKelvey12/12/06
My thoughts as I was reading the letter were that this is a real Godly husband! Even though he was in danger, he didn't write any of it to his wife and he encouraged her with spirtual truths! I loved this story!