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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Evangelism (11/01/07)

TITLE: Where Teddy Bears Sleep
By Dianne Janak


Ok, I fess up. When I was young, I made a choice. I viewed my life as black, in the dark, and unfair, but it was a test. God was a good God. Good teachers gave hard tests, so this was my test. Pass childhood, pass adolescence and I would be home free. No more tears, no more pain, and suffering, and my future husband, family and friends would all live in the land of dancing bears, my dreamy Shangra -la. I waited and watched for it to begin.

Daisy was a counselor at the Christian girls’ camp I attended six weeks a year. I imagined her life to be the happy carefree life I was waiting for. She was beautiful, rich, popular, always happy and smiling. Everyone loved Daisy. At age 16, I followed her like a pitiful puppy , watching for the secret of passage to her world. I felt like a stray, begging for food, but I was obsessed to witness what life was going to be like for me one day outside the dungeon of my suffering and loneliness. A dad in drunk stupor and a mother who blamed me, I planned an escape long ago from their madness. My teddy bear dream was to wake up one day to Daisy’s great life.

A quiet summer night in July, as God smiled, and angels danced, Daisy got real. As in genuine, authentic, gray, as the white of my imagination started to fade. Her story was to the point, no extra words, shocking me from my coma of lies into the brightness of reality and day.

“ You must see the truth, dear friend. I’m not who you think I am. It’s time for you to hear this. My life has been comfortable, but empty. My parents gave me everything, and I wanted more. I knew better, but I snuck out nights and partied long, getting addicted to alchohol and sex. I slept with two professors in college, and cheated on tests to get by when my hangovers caused a slump in my grades. The year I was voted homecoming queen was the year I wanted to die. I planned it in detail, and now I know why. I had to hit bottom to be rescued from my own destructive mess. No one knew. I hid it well. A friend suspected my pain, and came with a Bible in hand, and this was what she told me.”

Daisy opened up her Bible as we sat on the steps of the cabin, and started to read.

The shock of her words kept me in silence to listen to His truth. Tears forming in my eyes, as I heard what God had done. I knew Him I thought, but this was different. She was touched, changed, and secure enough in Him to lay down her reputation of my own silly dreams.

I remember it well, as the heavens opened up, and Daisy faded from view. I no longer heard her, or saw her, but felt something draw me. Fear was gone at that moment, as I started to see it. It was not the night I chose Him. It came 10 years later, but the seed planted was the beginning of the end of my teddy bear sleep.

I never saw Daisy again, but I know one day, a day we all wait for, a reunion awaits . I imagine a moment when our eyes and hearts meet, and laughter erupts in the land of no tears. And I can tell her this.

“Daisy, the night you opened your heart to me, stepping off the pedestal of my dreams, was the day I started to see clearly. Your pain touched mine, and I got in touch with the lie. My dreary life had some meaning, some light. If yours was not the real thing, then neither was mine. My dad could be kind, my mom was not well, and they loved me in ways I chose not to see. I had never seen it before. And because of your love, for Him, I’m here forever. In the land of no tears or longings.”

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This article has been read 755 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Julie Arduini11/08/07
What a great testimony. I loved the title and how you used colors as a backdrop of faith changing.
Dee Yoder 11/10/07
Your title drew me to your story and it is a touching entry. I like the ending especially well, because you bring out the change in your MC and how she matured through listening to the wise counsel of another.
Laury Hubrich 11/13/07
I remember looking up to certain women when I was young, too. I still do, as a matter of fact:) It's the ones that get real, that let themselves fade out so we can focus on Jesus -- those are the ones that teach us the most. Great writing.
David Butler11/16/07
I like the way you can weave poignant laughter and healing tears together with the other colourful elements in the fabric of this story. It makes it sound so real. This is REAL evangelism to me.
I like reading your articles. Keep 'em coming!