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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: In-Law(s) (05/08/08)

TITLE: Along Came Jim
By Dolores Stohler


Some years ago my daughter dated a man I didn‘t like. He seemed alright at first but, when I got to know him, it became apparent he had an ego ten feet tall. This puzzled me. After all, why would a school custodian think himself qualified to interpret the Bible and prophesy the future, being in special favor with God?

He took advantage of the fact that his salary was small and asked my daughter to pay for herself whenever he took her out to eat. He also had the annoying habit of dropping in unannounced right at the dinner hour. I recall an occasion when I made a large pot of minestrone soup, intending to lunch on it every day that week. Mr. Bad Manners knocked on the door just as we were sitting down to supper, ate three bowls of my soup, then called his brother to come over and try it. When the two of them left, all the soup was all gone and I was left to do the dishes.

On other occasions, he brought over a video to watch with Michelle and hinted that Mom should go to bed and leave them alone in the living room. I retired to my room with a book and mounting dismay that my daughter might consider marrying this creep. (Unknown to me they were already secretly engaged.) In total fear of what might come, I began to pray that they would break up. I knew that if I spoke against him, she would defend his honor.

The bombshell came on my birthday just as we were sitting down to a special dinner I‘d prepared.. He pulled her outside and broke their engagement. She was furious with him and ranted about it for weeks, but I was dancing with joy. Following this near disaster, my prayers for her took a different turn. I prayed that she would find a young man worthy of her and actually described in detail the kind of man I would have her marry.

Along came Jim. The heavens opened and the angels began to sing! I will never cease to be amazed at the way the Lord answered my prayers to the letter. Jim is a most amazing son-in-law. Never have I heard him speak a bad word against another human being or be anything less than pleasant and polite in my company. His optimism is contagious and so is his delightful sense of humor. Whenever he eats a meal someone else has prepared, he declares it to be “delicious” and I’ve never really seen him lose his temper. His faith in God is without question, he loves kids and is a wonderful father.

Of course, Jim has his faults just like anyone else. But the only flaw my daughter complains of is that he’s very relaxed and easygoing and it takes him a long time to accomplish things. Whenever I pray for Jim, I ask the Lord to toughen him up a bit because he usually agrees with Michelle in everything she asks and I don’t wish to see him become a doormat. Being gentle, patient and agreeable has its drawbacks.

When I consider the way the Lord has answered my prayers in this, I never doubt the authority He’s given me in praying for my kids. I believe children and grandkids need to be prayed for every day. It does more good than lecturing or arguing with them when they refuse to see our point of view.

“Blessed be God who didn’t turn away when I was praying, and didn’t refuse me his kindness and love. (Psalms 6:20 TLB)

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Member Comments
Member Date
Verna Cole Mitchell 05/15/08
Your story clearly shows the importance of praying for your children before they marry and after. I'm glad God answered your prayers with "Jim."
Debbie Wistrom05/16/08
Yea, God!
Loved this touching story and how your prayers were answered.

So glad you entered this, it gives hope.