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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: In and Out (04/30/09)

TITLE: Falling
By Rick Higginson


“Hey, Keith; glad you made it. Have you met Sara yet?”

“Actually, Mac, I was seeing how Darcy’s doing. I’m still trying to figure out why you’d dump your family for a co-worker half your age,” Keith said, with a disapproving scowl.

Mac shrugged. “I fell in love with Sara, and to be honest, I fell out of love with Darcy years ago.”

“You make it sound as unavoidable as falling into a mud puddle or falling out of your chair.”

“Well, yeah; it just happened.”

“No, Mac, it didn’t just happen. You didn’t just ‘fall out of love’ with your wife, and you didn’t just ‘fall in love’ with a co-worker. It’s a comfortable way to look at it, because it puts it all on the whim, and takes everything away from the will.”

“I knew you wouldn’t be supportive.”

“Supportive? You’re asking us to support you walking out on your wife. How can we support breaking the vows you made before God?”

“Oh, come on. God wants us to be happy. He wouldn’t expect me to stay in an unhappy marriage.”

“Oh, right. I forgot that provision in the Commandment that says, ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery, unless thou art in an unhappy relationship.’ Mac, the whole family knows now that you were stepping out with Sara before Darcy knew there was anything wrong.”

“Hey, judge not.”

“You and Sara worked in the same ministry, Mac. Did you tell them not to judge you when they found out?”

“It was time for a change anyway. That place was out of touch with their original vision.”

“You know, it always amazes me that when people quote, ‘Judge not,’ they manage to omit the verse from 1 Corinthians 11. ‘For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged.’ Regardless how much you rationalize and justify your actions, you’re going to be out of fellowship with God while you continue in sin.”

“Just forget it, Keith. You have always had an easy marriage. You can’t understand the situation I was in.”

“Easy marriage? Anyone in a successful marriage is going to tell you that it’s anything but easy.”

“Huh; you could have fooled me.”

“Mac, someone once said the secret to a successful marriage was always falling in love with the same person over and over. That’s true, but it’s over-simplified. Jill and I do fall in love with each other every single day, but it’s not some accidental thing that we’re just lucky enough to stumble into. We keep doing the things that helped us fall in love with each other in the first place. I never fall out of love with her, because there’s always a direct effort keeping us in love.”

“Well, maybe that worked for you, but it didn’t work for Darcy and me.”

“Did you try?”

“Look; I was a good husband and father. I kept them in food, clothing, and a safe home. I never took out my anger on Darcy or the kids, but the last few years, we were strangers living in the same house.”

“Once upon a time, you were strangers, and then you asked her out. When was the last time you took your wife out on a date?”

“I don’t know; probably before Lacey was born.”

“Lacey is graduating High School today, and the last time you took your wife out was before you two had her? Mac, I can understand when your kids were little, and it was tough to get a babysitter, but what about when the kids got old enough to stay by themselves?”

“By that time, I think we were just so used to staying in, that we didn’t care if we went out.”

“Maybe Darcy would have cared, if you’d asked her out again. You could have fallen back in love.”

“Well, that’s out of the question now.”

“Mac, I’m only here today to see my favorite niece graduate. You’re my brother, and I love you, but I’d rather head out now than imply agreement with you parading your mistress in front of the family.” His expression softened. “It’s time to get out of sin, and back in the arms of your Father. He’s waiting in the same place He’s always been.”

“What about Sara?”

“He’s waiting for her, too, to fall back in love with Him.”

“It does feel like God and me had a falling out.”

He embraced his brother. “Then it’s time for a falling in.”

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Member Comments
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Sara Harricharan 05/07/09
Though I'm glad for the happy ending, it seemed like it came too quickly. the ending had a good twist to it, i'm glad it was a brother speaking to him and not a friend, lol. it added more to his character. good job.
Sharon Kane05/11/09
So so much truth here, and well stated. The one sided attitude to judgement was also very relevant.
I also thought the turn around was a bit quick, but I guess you bumped into the word limit.
I especially liked the concerted effort the couple made to keep falling in love. Best advice any marriage counsellor could give, alongside being quick to say "I'm sorry"!
Verna Cole Mitchell 05/11/09
The advice to keep on falling in love with your spouse is just right in your story.