Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Hotel/Motel (09/12/05)
TITLE: Righteousness regained
By Karen Ward
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Jenny’s jaw ached from grinding her teeth.
She unclenched her fists slowly. Her nose twitched at the overwhelming odor of alcohol, and her head felt like a lead ball wrapped in marshmallow. She remained motionless under the covers as the dream faded and reality washed over her.
<I>Oh God, what have I done?</I>
Her face contorted.
<I>A hotel. I’m in a hotel. God, why did you let this happen?</I>
She remembered a conversation she’d had only two days ago.
“Jen, do you really think this is a good idea?”
“You’ve come a long way in two months. Do you really think you should go to the wedding?”
“I have to go. Jane and I have been best friends since high school. She’s expecting me. Besides, aren’t you always saying that we have to witness to people?"
<I>Yeah, witness. Tell all my old friends that I’ve become a Christian. Tell them about Jesus, and then end up drunk and in a hotel room with Jamie Peterson. To think I was angry that she didn’t trust me. Well I sure proved that I’m trustworthy didn’t I?</I>
Jenny tried to throw the covers over her head and hide, but they were caught. She growled, yanked at them angrily and then curled herself into a ball beneath them, hoping that the world would go away if she stayed there long enough.
<I>Well, at least Jamie had to leave early this morning. I’m glad he’s not here. </I>
Thoughts of the shots she’d had at the wedding, and the bottle of bourbon they had brought back to the room with them, confirmed her belief that she’d been out for the count when Jamie had snuck out to catch his plane.
<I>God, why!? You know I came intending to be good. I wasn’t going to drink at all. How did this happen?</I>
“Come on Jenny, just one for old time’s sake!” Jamie’s eyes were smoldering as he leaned in close enough for her to feel his warm breath on her cheek. “We have a lot of history, let’s drink to it!” He pushed the bourbon and coke into her hand.
The reception room was dimly lit now, as the music blared and the disco lights flashed. She was about to say she had to go, when her favourite song from high school started to play. Jamie leaned in closer, “Come on, dance with me. I’m not going out with Jane now.”
Her grown up self seemed to slip away as he led her to the dance floor.
<I>It was my dream come true. Jenny’s high school boyfriend wanted<B> me!</B></I>
By the time he steered her back to their drinks, her emotions were high, and her resolve was gone.
<I>I just ignored you God. Somehow I put a wall up. The moment I agreed to dance with him, I knew where it would lead. Oh God! Please forgive me! Help me! Don’t let this happen again. Oh thank Heavens no-one at church will need to know. But I know and You know, can you ever forgive me?</I>
Under the covers it was getting hard to breathe. Jenny thrust her head out the top and flung one arm towards the drawer where she had put her glasses. It was time for a hot shower and a coffee.
She felt around until she hit something cold and hard. She sat up to look. Her glasses were beside the object. She put them on.
A Gideons Bible.
<I>Oh God. I’m so sorry, can you ever forgive me?</I>
For a moment she just sat with the Bible clutched to her chest. Then she started to flick the pages over. A title caught her eye.
“Help in Time of Need – Forgiveness in Time of CONVICTION 1 John1:7-9”
<I>Oh yeah, that’s me.</I>
The last verse stood out: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
She read it again, and tears began to flow down her face as she received the gift that God had given her.
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