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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Every Dark Cloud has a Silver Lining" (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (02/28/08)

TITLE: Thank You, Dear Lord
By Clyde Blakely


November 20, 1996, my birthday. Two and a half hours away, Dad had been in the hospital for over a month. I’d been there for most of that time but had recently returned home to put in a few days work. I’d planned on spending the evening at home with family.

Calls to the hospital during the day though didn’t sound good, Dad was failing. I decided to run home, have dinner, a piece of cake and kiss my wife good-bye before heading back over.

I knew I was going over to visit my Dad for the last time here on earth. I wanted to be there yet I was stalling, I didn’t want him to die. I knew how much he wanted me to be with him. His father had suffered a terrible accident and before he could get there passed away. He cried the last time he told me the story.

More importantly though I did not know if my Dad was a Christian. He had certainly lived an honest life. He made some mistakes but he was a good man. Yet, I knew just being a good person doesn’t get one to heaven. I had accepted Jesus as my Savior almost 30 years before. Several conversations with Dad gave no visible sign of changes.

A few months before being hospitalized, Dad said he thought about going to church. “Dad, if you go I’ll be over here every Sunday and go with you.” Five hours round trip but I was there every Sunday sitting in church next to my Dad. He never shared his heart with me during this time. I prayed.

Of all the trips I had made to church and the hospital this one seemed the longest.

I stopped half way there for gas. I checked my watch, Hmmm, 2 AM.

Back in the pick-up I drove about five minutes, looked up and said, “Good-bye Dad.” My Father was heading east to visit my brother in Virginia. He was accompanied by one being, possibly two, and I felt their concern for me. I sensed no concern from them about my father’s well-being.

As I entered the hospital I was met by the charge nurse, “I’m sorry your father passed away.”

I asked what time, “It was five minutes after two.”

I didn’t get over to see my Dad before he died. But God gave me a much more precious gift: Dad stopped on his way out to see me AND was being accompanied by angels - on his way to Heaven!

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This article has been read 463 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shirley McClay 03/07/08
Wow.. very interesting.. gave me chills!
LauraLee Shaw03/07/08
Powerful testimony.
TJ Nickel03/12/08
This is a very touching story with a lot of potential and emotion in it. There are some problems with the flow in sentence structure and word choice. You use "though" a couple times in ways that don't work well or need punctuation. The big sentence early on about "passed away" can be improved by putting these words in the middle of the sentence. Small items like this end up taking away from the literary impact. I did like the story, mood, emotion, and characters but think the potential could be harnessed better.