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

TITLE: Heavenly Recess
By Lisa Harris


Fourteen year old Lauren leaned her head back on her pillow. Her once beautiful face now drained of all youth, her lips no longer rosy but raw and split. Lauren shut her eyes for a brief moment in hopes the nausea would leave. That was not to be as she leaned over her bed, dry-heaving so hard that the blood vessels had begun to burst like fireworks in her eyes. Groaning, she fell back again on her pillow crying out to God who was once so close now felt a lifetime away.

Struggling for thoughts or at least a thought to come to her mind, Lauren stared at her Bible laying on her nightstand. She focused on the worn, brown leather that covered the pages containing all the promises, love and understanding that her beloved Father said was hers.

But, “were they hers?” Speaking out loud in a hoarse whisper, her Father promised her healing, He promised her that He would be there, and He promised her peace that passed all understanding. But did those promises mean she would receive all that now?

Exhaustion shook her pencil-thin frame. Lauren rolled over and allowed sleep to take her briefly out of reality. She fell into a dreamless state, void of everything except the thought of living.

And living was what Lauren wanted to do.

“Knock, knock,” her mom called out as she was opening Lauren’s bedroom door a couple of hours later. “Sweetheart, it’s time to take you meds.”

Lauren slowly opened her eyes to focus on her mom’s concerned face. Worry lines had permanently etched themselves deeper on her forehead and her eyes were glassy from lack of sleep.

“Hey Mom, are you okay?” Lauren whispered.

Maggie just smiled at her daughter saying, “Wonderful, and it’s getting better, because I’ve got my cup of coffee and I’m with my favorite girl.”

Lauren swallowed the three pills and snuggled further into the covers. Eek! She suddenly screamed and then her shock turned to young girlish giggles.

“Mom look.” Lauren dug deep into the covers and pulled out a stuffed rat; compliments of her baby brother, no less. He was always trying to make her laugh, at least these last few months anyway. She stared sadly at the stuffed animal. “Mom?”

“Hmmm,” she answered as she sipped her strong brew.

“I had a weird thought just as I was going to sleep. When something like that happens, could that be God speaking to me?”

“Well, I find that sometimes when God speaks, He does so in a way that leaves no doubt it’s from Him.”

Lauren lay quiet and still, pondering what her mother had said.

Maggie gently urged her saying, “Sweetheart do you feel God shared something with you?”

Lauren nodded her head yes.

“Would you like to tell me?”

In that moment, Lauren’s words tumbled out just as God had spoken them to her.

“Do you remember Lauren when you were a little girl and how much you loved recess at school? How every day recess was the highlight of your day and sometimes the teacher would pick you and another student to receive recess early. Are you remembering how that felt? The thrill? You got to play longer than your friends for that day.”

“Yes, I remember.”

“Well, that’s how life is for children at times. For some, class is dismissed early and they get the thrill of recess before their friends. For others, class is not over for many, many years and their recess comes later.”

Lauren looked over at her mother who had tears in her eyes.

“Mom, I always loved recess.”

“I know, sweetheart,” she said as she reached over and touched her daughter’s face, “I know.”

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This article has been read 436 times
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Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 03/04/10
Ohh what a heart wrenching story. So beautifully told. I liked how how sneaked the eek in. It was perfect.
Jackie Wilson03/04/10
Great job telling this story, with a very intimate feel.
Dana McReynolds03/05/10
Beautiful story.
Allen Stark03/05/10
Uh, uh...this brought tears to my eyes as I remembered how I sat next to my wife as she underwent chemotherapy for breast cancer. Beautifully done.
Marilyn Schnepp 03/06/10
A very touching story written masterfully with suspence and passion - intertwined with bewilderment (for the reader to sort out)...but keeping the reader's interest until the very end. Well done!
Brenda Shipman 03/08/10
Lauren's mother isn't the only one with tears in her eyes. This is absolutely beautiful. I cannot imagine a more fitting analogy for heaven than an early recess. Precious story - I hope it ranks way at the top come Thursday morning!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 03/11/10
Congratulations for placing in the top 40. Good job.
Jackie Wilson03/11/10
Congratulations on your EC placing! Well deserved!
Carol Penhorwood 03/12/10
Lisa, this is inspired! I hope this gets wide coverage because I believe it could encourage so many in our world. Fantastic job. So well written.