Hire
Writers
Editors
Home Tour About Read What's New Help Forums Join
My Account Login
Shop
Save
Support
E
Book
Store
Learn
About
Jesus
  



The HOME for Christian writers! The Home for Christian Writers!
The Official Writing Challenge

BACK TO
CHALLENGE
MAIN

INSTRUCTIONS

how it works
submission rules
guidelines for
choosing a level

ENTRIES

submit your entry
read current entries
read past entries
challenge winners



Our Daily Devotional HERE
Place it on your site or
receive it daily by email.





TRUST JESUS TODAY

TRY THE TEST



Share
how it works   Submit

Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Eek! (02/25/10)

TITLE: Of Mice and Hammers
By Brenda Shipman
03/02/10


 LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
 SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
 ADD TO MY FAVORITES

Of Mice and Hammers

Eek….eek, eek

I heard it before I saw it. A mouse. Trapped in our kitchen sink and trying desperately to claw his way out. It was a tiny thing, but it may as well have been one of the ROUS (Rodents of Unusual Size) that Westley and Buttercup battled in the Fire Swamp. My teenaged self stood there, paralyzed with fear, not knowing what to do. Should I try to capture it? And just how would I do THAT? What would I do with it once I did get hold of it? Maybe if I just ignored it, he would find his own way out and I wouldn’t have to deal with it.

While standing there trembling in my fear and indecision, my farm-born-and-bred mother walked calmly to the garage, came back with a hammer in her hand, and proceeded to beat the living daylights out of the ROUS. She scooped it up with a paper towel, threw it in the trash, then shot me a look that said, “Oh my, where have I failed in my parenting?”

That picture of my mom flailing away with her hammer, lips pursed in determination without one flicker of fear, has stayed with me through the years. It seemed to symbolize a courage that I sorely lacked, but longed to possess. I later understood that it was through a childhood of picking cotton in the harsh west Texas sun, and struggling with poverty during the depression years, that contributed to my mother’s hardy tenacious spirit. She also had her own mother’s example of endurance in hardship. Grandma had lost a husband and two children in the 1918 flu epidemic, and yet continued to serve her family in the midst of intense heartache and meager provisions.

These two women became role models for my sister and me. Many years later, when a devastating blow shattered my own comfortable existence, and I called my sister from the hospital, nearly hysterical with grief and fear, she lovingly reminded me that, “We come from good stock; you can make it through this.” She helped me remember our steadfast grandmother, and our courageous mother with a hammer in her hand.

My sister’s words also reminded me that I am descended from another “sturdy stock”. God says in Romans chapter 11 that He has grafted me into His tree, and in Psalm 16:6-8 the Psalmist declares that my lineage is great:

“The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. I will bless the Lord who has counseled me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

As children of God, through the work that Christ has accomplished on the cross, we have the wonderful assurance that He has grafted us into His beautiful family tree. It is a tree rooted in strength, and able to provide us with courage to face our greatest fears. Because He is at our right hand, we do not have to be shaken. Our God is near – to counsel and comfort and carry us.

In the movie The Princess Bride, Buttercup stood at the edge of the Fire Swamp, with its Rodents of Unusual Size, and lamented, “We’ll never survive.”

Westley replied, “Nonsense, you’re only saying that because no one ever has.”

Not much comfort in that statement! But, as the story goes, they did indeed survive and lived to fight another day. We face our own “fears of unusual size” throughout our lives, and yet plenty of our brothers and sisters who have gone before us in this journey have survived. Their stories give us courage to go on and fight another day.

My fearless mother may have used a hammer to take care of one of my greatest fears as a teen, but God our Father has given us a Sword, His Word, to face all our fears … and fight all our battles.


The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
Accept Jesus as Your Lord and Savior Right Now - CLICK HERE
JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.


This article has been read 344 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 03/04/10
You did a great job of transiting a story to a wonderful message from God.
Ruth Stromquist03/05/10
I agree with the above comment. It's what I immediately noticed also -- how smoothly your piece shifted from the personal level to Scriptural, and made your points.
Marie Fink03/05/10
From movie quote to real life mom as mentor, to spiritual application, back to movie...A captivating way to teach scriptural truths applicable to our lives for today. Good work.
Jackie Wilson03/06/10
I thought this was excellent! You segued seamlessly from personal experience to a nod at The Princess Bride to scripture application. Terrific writing. (Plus, I love that you used The Princess Bride, one of my all-time favorites,that I've seen so many times that I know most of the dialog!)