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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Make Hay While the Sun Shines" (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (03/06/08)

TITLE: Mari's Story
By Laury Hubrich


Mari walked the twisty, narrow road. With her head down; bowed under the weight of bitterness and loneliness, she took one step after another. She had no clue where the road was leading. The only direction given was to pack a lunch, wear walking shoes and go. That’s it. She argued with the Lord awhile but in the end, that’s exactly what she did. She donned her walking shoes and she walked and she walked; her lunch pail in tow.

Winded, she stopped to rest at a brook, where she took off her shoes and dipped her toes in the icy cold water. She looked down and saw her reflection and whispered, “I’m so lonely, Lord.” She ate her lunch and took a long gulp of her tea, then readied herself for the journey once again.

Up ahead, the sun grew bright. It seared into her eyes, blinding her. She raised her hand to shield herself from the glare but decided to continue to walk. She felt, in her spirit, that she had to get to wherever it was that God had in mind. In her haste to find shade, Mari tripped over a stone. While bent over she saw a tiny flower. It was the most beautiful one she had ever seen.

She pulled it out of the ground and brought it to her nose. Such a sweet smell, it was almost overwhelming. She then looked up and saw a whole field of wildflowers. The smells intoxicated her. She put the delicate flower into her lunch pail and took off running into the colorful array of beauty.

Mari stood in the middle of the field and held her arms out, face to the sky, and sang with all her might, praising the Lord for this wonderful gift. She skipped and twirled and did cart wheels. She felt as though she were ten once again. But then -- something stopped her. Her hand, on the downward movement of the cartwheel, crushed a flower.

She laid, belly on the ground, and peered at the fragile thing. Mari could see, even though the petals stuck to each other, how beautiful the plant was. She pulled it up out of the ground and untwisted its roots, and pulled the petals away from each other. She felt the stickiness of the pollen. It was as though it was crying.

She laid the flower with the other in her pail and away she ran, home to where she was safe from hurting anything else. She found two pots and carefully she buried the roots into the loose soil. She patted it down and peered at them intensely. Such love for these living things baffled her.

The flowers took root and soon grew tall and proud. Every day Mari would water them. She would sing lovely songs to help them grow. She placed compost on them to give them much needed nutrients. But soon she noticed that they stopped growing. Quickly they became much too big for their planters. She knew she should take them back and replant them in the field. They belonged there. Her heart plummeted. She loved these two little plants. They were her only friends in the whole world. How could she give them up? What would she do?

Each day she fretted and fumed against God. Why would He allow her to find these two only to have to let them go again? What purpose was there in that? The two little yellow flowers started to droop. Because of their great love they had for Mari, they struggled along, as best they could, but in the end they just couldn’t do it any longer.

Mari jumped out of bed. This was the day she had decided to take the long walk back to the field. Mari ran to see her ailing friends, to say one long last goodbye. “Good morning, my dears,” she sang. Her eyes widened and began to fill with tears. Both flowers lay, drooped over the small pot. Gasping for space, they had breathed their last breaths. She bent down to take a closer look. She carefully lifted up a leaf and it fell off in her hand and fluttered to the floor.

Stunned, Mari fell to her knees and the tears flowed. The Lord ministered to her heart that day and she finally understood how to be a good friend. She had learned and was now ready for true friendship. A knock sounded at her door…

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This article has been read 1032 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Amy Michelle Wiley 03/13/08
Touching allegory. I love the ending of a knock on the door.
Verna Cole Mitchell 03/14/08
You really know how to get and hold a reader's interest. I loved your story and your message. The knock on the door is the perfect ending.
Marilyn Schnepp 03/15/08
Written nicely and creative; however, as a Reader, I found myself walking and walking, and not getting anywhere; and I missed the topic completely...but I thought it had a good message about how to make friends, and living things needing love and care and breathing space. It was, as I stated, written well and very creative.
Joanne Sher 03/15/08
Absolutely beautiful. A wonderful message and excellent sense of place. I could feel the heartache throughout this piece. Lovely.
Shelley Ledfors 03/16/08
Beautiful. A lot of emotion in this piece. Lovely illustration of how we sometimes have to go through difficult times in order to be ready for the blessings the Lord has for us. Loved the ending!
Jan Ackerson 03/16/08
Lovely, visual writing, and a super, open ending.
Lyn Churchyard03/16/08
I found myself holding my breath and leaning towards the computer screen to get closer to the field of flowers. This was a great story. I want to know who is at the door!
Catrina Bradley 03/16/08
I understand this on so many levels. A wonderfully deep and multi-layer piece of writing. Excellent!!
Mandy White03/16/08
Beautiful story, Laury. Mari was sweet but confused. She missed her opportunity to be a good friend.
Sally Hanan03/17/08
This reminded me of the fairy tales I used to read...lovely descriptions and flow.
Marita Thelander 03/17/08
You are a flawless writer. This is a very beautifully written allegory. I think the line that hits me the most is: "Such love for these living things baffled her. "

Patty Wysong03/17/08
What a wonderful story. I could relate to this and I loved the ending--a lesson and hope. God prepares us for things. Well done!
Debbie Wistrom03/17/08
Lovely descriptions and a toughing message. I too want to know who was at the door.
Yvonne Blake 03/17/08
What a LOVELY allegory! Your descriptions were beautiful.
I'm not sure of the last sentence. I needed more to even guess who might be there.
There could be so many ways to learn from this story.
Thank you for writing it.
Joshua Janoski03/17/08
I love reading and writing allegories. This was superb. I don't know how you manage to think up these imaginative tales, but I am always impressed.

I saw the topic clearly in this one. Had Mari not questioned God, then her flower friends might have lived. At least she was able to take this lesson and use it to help her find new friends.

Good job Laury. I hope you feel better soon. :)
Chely Roach03/19/08
This was beautiful...one of my very favorites this week. Wow, and thanks.
Beckie Stewart03/19/08
Oh wow! This is awesome. I loved reading it and you had me captivated the entire time. I love the way in which the flowers teach her the value of friendship. You are so creative.
Sara Harricharan 03/19/08
What a pretty little piece! I liked the allegory in here, especially with the touch of the flowers in the pot and Mari. (I really like her name!) This was different and with a careful message at the end. ^_^
Betty Castleberry03/19/08
This is really touching. I have a really tender heart about things like the little flowers, too. Well done.
LauraLee Shaw03/20/08
I love Mari's Story. It is a beautiful, dreamy piece which leaves me feeling hopeful and cautious at the same time. Beautiful, sweet Laury, and I'm praying for you! :)
Celeste Ammirata03/24/08
I love Mari and her flowers. And how the Lord used them to open her heart for true friendships. What a great writer you are! God Bless.