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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Inner Person (09/09/10)

TITLE: The Beholder's Eye
By Jesus Puppy


The heat of the day had already reached double digits, but the lunch time crowd forced Muriel to sit in the open air of the street café. There she sat in sweltering temperatures, even in the shade of the awning, and tried hard to keep her mind on the day's study.

Absentmindedly, she watched pedestrians and cars alike, as they rushed along the busy afternoon street-- in such a hurry to get nowhere. People dressed in casual and formal business attire, mothers pushing strollers, and the occasional student like herself, mixed and mingled with the homeless vagabonds.

Distracted by a squeaky wheeled shopping-cart filled to overflowing, Muriel could not help but overhear a lopsided conversation.

"I thought they would be here by now," an old woman stooped down to tug at the wrinkled stocking on her left leg. "Didn't you say they would be at the Arch around noon."

"Well, that's what they told me."

"Then where are they," the woman’s heated reply came booming across the café tables.

"Sshh," a ragged voice responded in a near whisper. "Gladis, keep your voice down. You want others staring, you silly woman?"

"Let 'em gawk," the woman grew louder and wove a free arm around before her. "Think I care what a bunch of pansy businessmen think?"

"You're bothering that young woman in the café, look how she's staring." Muriel dropped her eyes away, though still secretly fascinated by the intense dialog.

"Probably one of those gold digging lizzys you hear about," the old woman turned wide eyes on the café front. "Well, you ain't gettin' a dime off me, girly."

Shamed by her eavesdropping, Muriel forced her attention back to the book on her table as the woman slowly waddled toward the corner. Though her voice carried in the afternoon heat, it grew softer as she left the diners behind.

"That chauffeur should be fired. If I don't make it to the castle in time to clean up for the social, he will be."

"Do you think that handsome Prince Brian will be there again?" the ragged, softer voice was barely heard.

"Yes," the woman's loud words carried even from the distant corner. "He was so hot in that blue tux last year."

She couldn't help but feel sorry for the old woman, who seemed be lost in her own little world. As her eyes focused once more on the study, Muriel's heart nearly stopped with the revelation before her. . .

"1 Samuel 16:7; But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

Muriel sighed a heart repentant prayer for the homeless as her eyes lingered on the street corner where she caught a last glimpse of the old woman as she wrestled her rickety shopping-cart over the curb, still arguing contentedly to herself.

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This article has been read 568 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Theresa Santy 09/16/10
Very nice.

The story was captivating and I kept wanting to jump ahead to see what's coming nest.

Your prose is smooth and and refined.

Loved the message.

Very nice, indeed.
Troy Manning09/16/10
Nice use of details for creating atmosphere! A couple of question marks are missing in the dialogues in the 1st half. Nice job.
Lillian Rhoades 09/16/10
Not sure if this captured the
topic because the story really didn't focus on "the inner person" of the homeless woman. By the title and the narrative it would suggest just the opposite. You are focusing more on the outside as a "beholder" and NOT looking on the inside to
discover what makes a person "tick".

There is, nevertheless, a good message about how we should view homeless people.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 09/16/10
This story is a great reminder not to judge others. It's a reminder I often need. I thank you for a great message.
Jody Day 09/17/10
Wonderful message. You held my attention the whole time. Great job!
Genia Gilbert09/18/10
A good reminder that the "inner person" in your MC felt bad about not looking for the "inner person" in the other lady. Good conclusion.
Kate Oliver Webb 09/18/10
Sad but realistic tale of unfortunate people we see all the time in our cities--and even our small towns. Good writing; you caught the restive atmosphere with your dialog and descriptions.
Christina Banks 09/20/10
It's hard not to judge others by their outward appearance. Thank you for the great reminder.
Barbara Lynn Culler09/21/10
What a sad story. I encounter a lot of homeless in my city, and it is heartbreaking. There is even a "tent city" just 4 miles from where I live.

Very good as a devotional!
Loren T. Lowery09/21/10
I was wondering if someone would take this scripture on and run with it. I'm glad to see you did and ran it all the way to a touch down. Excellent dialogue and intrigue with the scripture tying all together in a profound if not convicting manner. Great job, really enjoyed the way you presented this.
Rachel Phelps09/21/10
Great characters! The ending felt a little rushed, but 750 words is quite the limitation. Good work.
AnneRene' Capp09/30/10
This is so genuine. I also, couldn't wait to see what was going to happen next. You did do a great job with your descriptions and I could feel what Muriel felt as she looked away, ashamed for eavesdropping. Your message was actually "right on topic" about the inner man and more importantly, what God sees. :) Great title too.
Sandra Carter10/07/10
This was a great story. We should all take that look on the inside of ourselves.