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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Blessed (10/11/12)

TITLE: Torn Between Two Brothers...
By Noel Mitaxa


Terry’s gone, and it looks like we’ll never see him again.

I’ll miss him. We all will. Well, Steve says he won’t miss him at all, but I doubt it.

I know Dad’s upset, though he tries not to show it. This whole mess has cost him plenty, but he won’t say how much, and I don’t know how he will get all that money back.

I love Terry so much, because he’s always been so much fun. He always made time to tease me, his little sister, but it was always in fun.

“Terry the Terror,” they call him, but I never realised how much of a terror until I heard him starting to complain about being stuck on the farm. “All this fresh air and hard work has kept Dad so fit that he will live forever… I won’t be able to enjoy what’s coming until I’m nearly as old as he is … It’s not fair…”

I had to laugh when he complained about how cramped he felt: “Everything’s so boring here – like rounding up the cows for milking - because if you aren’t the front cow the view is not so wonderful!”

But it broke my heart when I heard him tell Dad: “I wish you’d drop dead! Then I could get a life of my own! You could afford it, and I’ll never bother you again!”

Dad said nothing. He just sold up half the stock and gave Terry all the proceeds of the sale.

Terry didn’t even thank him. He just shoved the money in his wallet and he was gone - without saying goodbye.

Steve is my only brother, now that Terry has gone. I love him too, but he’s so hard to get close to. Nowhere near as warm or full of fun as Terry is. Oh, he works hard. Probably too hard, because all he thinks about is the work that has to be done.

Yup, “Steve the Steady One:” always there, always dependable, and oh so dull.

Talk about all work and no play. And now he plays the old “I’m the good son” routine any chance he gets. It’s wearing a bit thin for me, and I see Dad’s eyes glaze over just a little more each time it starts.

How could these two brothers really be brothers? Why couldn’t Terry accept that belonging to our family is such a blessing, and that hard work is part of it?

We were blessed with stuff that money could never buy: like getting along, or respecting each other, or enjoying the variety in the seasons, or pulling together through low prices or low rainfall - or all the other things that you can’t plan for?

And then there’s Steve – who takes everything as seriously as he takes himself. Doesn’t he know how blessed he is already; or how much Dad loves him?

What’s to become of our family? Nobody mentions it, but now there’s a huge Terry-shaped hole around here.

Will it ever be filled?

Can we ever be as blessed again?

Author's note: This is a partial para(llel)able from Luke's gospel - chapter fifteen

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This article has been read 354 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Ellen Carr 10/18/12
I enjoyed your story adaption of the first part of the prodigal son/loving father parable. You'll have to do another episode to finish the story. Well written. Thanks.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/22/12
You did a lovely job of bringing the parable of The Prodigal son to life in a modern way. I also enjoyed the POV from the little sister's eyes as sisters and brothers do tend to see different things. You grabbed my attention right at the beginning. I was eager to read on and see who Terry was (I did think it might have been done from an animals POV first so I enjoyed the bit of mystery in the very beginning as well. You definitely nailed the topic plus gave the reader something to stop and really think about--how and the many ways that our family is a blessing. This was a pleasure to read.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/22/12
I always try not to read the comments before I comment as it can influence one's opinion. So I wanted to mention that one of the things I liked best about this story is its open ending. It would have been quite predictable had Terry come home, but it wouldn't have seemed as real to today. Many parents or siblings lose touch with their loved ones and sometimes may never reunite. The open ending allows the reader to go where she needs to go with God guiding her journey. :)
Genia Gilbert10/22/12
This is a good job of bringing the prodigal son story into today's world. Very nice writing!
lynn gipson 10/23/12
My oldest brother left home when I was three, and only came back once, I can feel the little sister's pain. I really loved this piece and think it is just wonderful. Thank you so much. This would make an excellent book I think.

God Bless, Lynn
Verna Cole Mitchell 10/23/12
This was an excellent illustration of what "blessed" means. Your contrast of characters is well done. I just wondered where that third brother came from! ; ))
Colin Swann10/23/12
A good solid story of a modern wayward son portraying the Bible story of the Prodigal. Well written and related.

Colin (Gold Member)
Verna Cole Mitchell 10/23/12
oops--My mistake--I thought there was a third brother, but a re-read showed the narrator was a sister. Anyway, it's an excellent story!
Loren T. Lowery10/23/12
Very enjoyable read; and like most of your writings, very thought provoking and insightful. Taking the reader just on the edge of another's thoughts which could so easily be named as our own.
Allison Egley 10/23/12
I love this modern re-telling of an old parable. I love Biblical fiction in general, and this did not disappoint.
Hiram Claudio10/24/12
Wonderful re-telling and I truly enjoyed the perspective of this well known story from the viewpoint of a potential additional sibling. Well written and thought provoking. Great job!
Bea Edwards 10/24/12
Very interesting and creative adaptation of the Prodigal from a sisters viewpoint. You cleverly wove her input into a well know parable as if she were part of the original story. Very enjoyable thanks!
C D Swanson 10/24/12
Great job with the all too familiar story of the "Prodigal son." Nicely done. God bless~
Willena Flewelling 10/24/12
Very well done, and an enjoyable read! I like the way you did it, with a little sister as the narrator. Nice touch!
Phyllis Inniss10/25/12
Wonderful story of a modern-day Prodigal Son and you showed up the difference between them with clarity and no mushiness. It is truly an interesting take on the Bible story.
Phyllis Inniss10/25/12
Sorry, I should have said the difference between the two brothers.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/25/12
Congratulations for placing 6th in level three! Happy Dance!