Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Start (01/16/06)
TITLE: How Do I "Start"
By Steve Clark
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Dried and dressed, with a cup of coffee I eye the kitchen mess. Probably should have cleaned up last night instead of starting another chapter, but I had the opening paragraph in mind, and... well, you know how it is.
With banana, yogurt, spoon, muffin, napkin, and coffee in hand, I juggle and fumble my way to my desk; spilling only a few drops of the precious coffee. I start up my computer, open Outlook, check e-mail, and delete the spam. Don’t we all just love S.P.A.M. – Satan’s Profusion of Abject Madness?
Hey, look! “Your article has been reviewed @ FaithWriters.com” I click on the link to see what’s been said of my feeble attempts to capture God’s whispers. These other writers are so nice.
What’s this week’s writing challenge topic? “Start” Hmmmmmm. What can I do with that? Hmmmm. Hmm. Hm. Nothing yet. Maybe I should warm-up the old thought machine. I start a game of Spider solitaire while eating my banana. After losing twice I think more about the idea of “Start.” Hmmm. Getting going? Getting started at something? Hmm. Still nothing.
Back at the kitchen for more coffee I decide to wash a few dishes. Setting some to soak in the sink, I scrape a plate into the garbage can and notice the can is full, so I pull the bag and head to the trash bin out back. Returning through the laundry room I notice the pile of clothes waiting their turn in the washer. I empty the dryer, fill it with clean, wet clothes and start it up. Adding detergent to the washer, I start a load of whites. There isn’t enough to fill the load so I go on safari through the house looking for dirty t-shirts, gym socks and tightie-whities. Noticing my bed in disarray, I drop the clothes on the floor, make the bed, and open the shades. By the time I get back, the washer is full of water, waiting for me to close the lid so it can begin washing. I look outside and see a bird take off from the fence. "Start" Hmmmm. To begin, to step forward... nah.
Back to the dishes. The dishwasher needs to be emptied before I can start filling it. So, I start to put things away. With the dishwasher finally empty I start loading. Hoping for a touch of warmth, I get a mouthful of cold coffee. Dumping it, I find the pot too empty to fill the cup. I start a small pot.
Standing with my butt against the counter, staring out the window above the sink, I struggle with the concept of “Start” and wonder why it sometimes is so hard to come up with something to write about. What does it mean to start? Does it mean we haven’t done anything yet? Does it mean we will have hopes of finishing? Is it about initiative, or having a lot of things on our “To Do” list? Is it going to start raining, or is the movie about to start? Like starting a car, a prayer, or a new job, we all must move from this moment to the next and choose if we want to go it alone, or include God, but, is it temptation or inspiration we follow when we start? Just starting a sentence can be painful if I don’t know why I am saying what I want to say, or where I am going with it.
This idea of “Start” seems so perplexing. If only... if I could just get started on something, anything. Maybe I should actually start something and not just sit here thinking about it. But, what? “Father God, please give me a clue or an experience of “starting” something. Help me to ‘get’ this.”
“Start” Hmmmmm. Maybe next week’s topic will be easier.
Is the coffee ready?
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