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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Fame (05/10/12)

TITLE: Sword of the Spirit
By Sandra Renee Hicks


Sword of the Spirit

Former Olympian fencer, Langston Gaither is now a much in demand A-list actor. He travels extensively to fulfill his many theatrical obligations. Occasionally, he has twinges of guilt for the minimal time shared with his wife, Esther and his son, Seth.

On flight 712, Langston daydreams about his days as a fencer. He thinks about his Olympic teammate, Eliot. “I had high times with Eliot. We were a hoot together. Yes, indeed, we were the aces on the team. It still pains me that our team didn’t win any medals and that I only won silver.”

Langston sighs. He cheers up when his thoughts bring him to the present. Goose bumps collect on him as he delights in assurances that Eliot is considered one of the best fencing coaches in the U.S. Langston’s son Seth is one of his pupils. Yes, Seth is a second generation fencer. Langston is so proud. Most thrilling is that Seth is a contender to be a gold medalist in the Olympics.

When his schedule allows, Langston visits Eliot and they fence together. Langston is still pretty sharp with a sword.

Langston lands in California for an interview on CTN. In days he’ll begin production on a blockbuster film, “Exceeding Great Army.”

Prior to his interview, Langston’s phone rings.

It’s Seth. He’s hysterical.

He sobs to his father, “Dad, Eliot just had a massive heart attack!”

Langston is seized with fear.

He gets Seth to calm down enough to give him details about what happened with Eliot.

Langston tells his son, “I’m on the next flight there!”

Langston notifies CTN personnel about his emergency.

He makes arrangements to be on the next flight to Colorado to be by the side of Eliot and his family.

Seth and his mother meet Langston outside Eliot’s room. They embrace.

Inside Eliot’s room, dread looms in the air. His wife, Ruth, is pale and painfully aware of Eliot’s critical condition.

Langston steps in and holds Ruth’s hand.

She’s lifted by his love and presence.

Langston whispers, “We know he’s a fighter, Ruth.”

Ruth nods and smiles wanly.

To their utter astonishment, Eliot weakly responds, “You’ve got that right.”

Those words from Eliot alter the tone of the atmosphere.

Renewed hope enters.

Days later, Elizabeth, Eliot’s nurse, speaks to him about the Lord. After repeated visits from her, he accepts Christ as Savior.

Increasingly, Eliot improves but he’s nowhere near able to continue as Seth’s coach for the upcoming Olympics.

There are only seven weeks before Seth leaves to compete.

Langston thinks, in earnest, about the matter. He’s been affected by Eliot’s recent decision to accept Christ as Savior. He decides to pray. “Lord, please guide us on what to do.”

The Lord speaks, “You coach your son.”

Langston questions whether he heard God.

God laughs and says, “Yes, it’s Me that you heard, Langston. You coach Seth. I’ll help you.”

Nervously, Langston chuckles and says to God, “OK, Lord, but I’m so uncertain about this.”

God answers, “Certainly, I’ll be with you, son.”

Reluctantly, Langston goes to share the information with Seth.

Incredulous, Seth remarks, “You believe that God said what?! Be for real, dad! What about your career? You’re a famous actor with production about to begin on a blockbuster movie.”

Langston responds, “God’s more famous than us all. Son, I know it sounds unbelievable but I believe what I heard is from God. I’ll sacrifice my career for the Lord, and for you. God first, family second and career third. If God desires that I continue to flourish in my acting career, it shall come to pass. Yes, a bunch of folks are going to be angry - better them than God.

Seth isn’t having it.

Langston waits.

That night Seth had a dream that he was coached by his father and that he won the Olympic gold medal.

And that’s precisely what happened.

At the Olympic arena, as Seth stands on the gold medal platform, he looks up and sees a man frantically waving the American flag. It’s Eliot. He’d made a surprise appearance. One of his hands holds the flag and the other hand points up in honor to God. Seth raises both arms with fingers on both hands pointing up giving public honor to God.

Langston glows.

The next day the headline in a major newspaper expresses, “Gold Sacrifice - Famous Father Shines with Son”

Hebrews 4:12 - KJV
…the word of God is quick, and powerful and sharper than any twoedged sword,…

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This article has been read 426 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 05/17/12
This is a great story. You intrigued me right from the beginning, especially with the Summer Olympics just around the corner.

The flow was a little stilted. Having more showing would help this. Instead of telling that Seth is hysterical show the reader by describing a shrill, fast voice with jumbled words.

The ending is sweet. I really liked how the father took the cue from the son and relied on God. You did a nice job writing on topic but still keeping it fresh and interesting.
C D Swanson 05/17/12
This was such a good read. Nicely done, and so well written.

I loved the ending giving public display and honor to God. Made me smile and gave me goosebumps! Thanks.

God Bless~
Genia Gilbert05/17/12
I like your story a lot. It could have had a little more natural flow, I think, but it really puts things in right perspective through your MC. Good job!
Marina Rojas05/19/12
I liked the concept of this writing, I'm always a sucker for a happy ending!

I would have liked to be rooting for the dad to become the coach, but somehow I wasn't...but I was happy in the end about how it all turned out.

Leola Ogle 05/21/12
Good story! Enjoyed the ending. God bless.
Hiram Claudio05/23/12
Nice writing here and the story grabbed you right from the start. I like the way you turned the father froma man with very out of balance priorities to one who "gets it." The transition was a bit quick but I thought it still felt real. Good job!
Edmond Ng 05/23/12
An enjoyable read that keeps one reading from start to the end. I like the story plot of the MC choosing God first over all else, and then the reward that came after for his obedience. Excellent writing!