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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Hotel/Motel (09/12/05)

TITLE: Gideon's Trumpet
By Benjamin Stephens
09/13/05


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Have I ever left this room? Will I ever have a life beyond these walls? Some days I sit here and wonder if anyone even knows I am here. I listen to the cleaners as they tidy the rooms and change the bedding but they rarely bother me.

Itís been four months since anyone paid any attention to me. That night had special meaning for me. Payton came by and drank himself into a stupor. Things had been hard for him, he said as much. He gazed into the television and watched shows that left scars on his mind. Thankfully I couldnít see a thing from where I sat, but I heard him crying.

When he came to where I sat, I noticed a gun in his hand. He placed the gun to his temple, spittle mingled with tears as he contemplated his past and present and saw no future. He didnít say anything, but suddenly his hand dropped to his side and he rummaged through a drawer looking for some stationary, there was a note he wanted to write. Thatís when he heard Gideonís trumpet.

Sheila dropped by and brought company. They forgot that I shared the same room and these two enjoyed the company of anotherís spouse. I had never met the man before but Sheila was a frequent guest and every time she has ever been here there is a pain that has found a permanent place in the gathering wrinkles near the corners of her eyes.

He left early and Sheila sat in the chair nearest me, I was more than willing to speak to her. I had words of hope she needed to hear. She looked for a phone book, but she heard Gideonís trumpet.

Jake had never been by to see me before and he seemed out of place. In the darkness he called out the name of his beloved, Trisha. I could see she had marched on without him and he was lost. He refused to carry on a conversation with me at first, he simply talked at me. His eyes refused to focus through the tears.

I sat in silence and watched as the old manís grief unfurled like a stadium banner. It was safe here, no one else would know. As he placed a handkerchief to his rheumy eyes he began to hear the call of Gideonís trumpet and he paid attention.

Sometimes weeks will go by and I am left to consider my usefulness, but these memories keep me at my post where I sit silently waiting for someone to feel my embossed letters and learn that their best hope is often found in their lowest moment. A moment when things were so bad they could finally hear Gideonís trumpet.

My pages are bent and bruised, my cover warn and sometimes dusty. If you turn to page 752 you will see tear stains - there are other pages when the hope of Gideonís trumpet beckoned to willing ears and broken hearts and placed celebrating angels on alert.

So, when you drop by and wonder why I sit and wait, please know that I may not be here for you. It may be that the couple whose marriage is crumbling has a need for a blast from Gideonís trumpet. Possibly itís a traveling salesman who is not meeting his quota or a runaway who really needs to call home.

Then again, I could be here for you - are you listening?


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This article has been read 856 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Karen Ward09/19/05
I have to confess that I found this hard to read because I didn't really get it until the end. When the penny finally dropped, I really liked the concept. Perhaps I'm just a bit slow today!
Phyllis Inniss 09/20/05
An unusual take on the topic. I like it. So many need to hear that trumpet call.
Anita Neuman09/20/05
A lot of people have used the Gideon theme -but this is the most intriguing take on it. Well done!
janet rubin09/20/05
I like the idea of this story (very creative), but found it hard to follow-confusing.
Jan Ackerson 09/21/05
I think this was very effective--you make your reader guess about the narrator for a while, and then--when we finally get it--we have to read it again with the narrator's true identity in mind. Very sneaky way to get us to read it twice! I liked it a lot!
darlene hight09/21/05
I loved this! An inspired piece (In my humble opinion)! I love the idea of Gideon's trumpet sounding. To me that said it all. Did notice a couple of typos but they didn't diminish the piece at all.
Pat Guy 09/21/05
Maybe I'm unusually bright tonight but I caught on early and still enjoyed all of Gideon's personal encounters. This really is well done.
Debra Brand09/21/05
Very unique entry. I didn't get it at first. Good pov.
Lynda Lee Schab 09/22/05
I'm joining the crowd in saying it took me a minute to get it (about half-way through). But I'm one who loves to be surprised and I was delighted by this one. Well written and clever angle on the topic. A contender for sure.
Blessings, Lynda
Linda Watson Owen09/22/05
Wonderful story, great use of personification in a very creative POV, and very realistic at the same time!
Suzanne R09/23/05
What a creative point-of-view! Well done.
Shari Armstrong 09/23/05
Very creative! I like this a lot.
Amy Verlennich09/23/05
I had my guesses in the beginning where you were going and it kept me reading to find out. I LOVED this... really thought you did a good job. Great concept, I thought. I thought the beginning and middle was stronger than the ending however. Again, very clever idea for "hotel/motel" theme! Blessings, Amy Verlennich
Deborah Porter 09/27/05
Ben, this was an exellent take on the topic and on the use of the Gideon's Bible. Well done (as always). With love, Deb