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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Laughter (10/18/04)

TITLE: The Night We Laughed
By Alan Vaca
10/21/04

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It was five in the evening and my stomach was aching from sheer hunger. So were my brother and four sisters. We had had nothing to eat since morning. I was the youngest of six children when my father left us and my mother was jobless.

Mama had gone out twice during the day trying to borrow from people who had been kind to us in the past. But then, our debts had piled up and no one was willing to help anymore. She had been running around trying to get a job but had not been successful.

My eldest sister, Julie, looked after us when Mama was out. She carried me on her back and told us Mama was going to bring home food for us all. When she came in half an hour later, I was crying out of hunger. Her face was drawn and she looked so exhausted. She took me into her arms and gathered the rest around her. We understood that she had not brought home anything to eat and we just sat in silence.

"Come with me, my children", she said. She got up and led us out of the house and we followed without asking where we were going.

The church was located on top of a low hill, five minutes walk from the one room shed we called home. Since it was a weekday the church was empty and Mama led us to the alter. She made us all kneel before the alter and did the same behind us.

Her voice cracked into a sob as she began to pray aloud, “Lord, my children are hungry and I have nothing to give them. Lord… please feed my children…” And all of us cried as she prayed.

Since it was winter, it got dark by the time we reached home. We were so hungry but strangely we were at peace because we believed Mama when she said, “Now don’t you cry, God will take care of us”.

A little while after we had returned, there was a knock on the door and Julie went to answer it. We heard someone speaking to her in low tones and when she came back she was smiling. In her hand, she had a big bowl filled with rice, enough for all of us for the evening. A stranger had had a sudden urge to bring us food at that time of the evening.

It was the best meal we ever had although it was only boiled rice and vegetables.

That night, as we sat around the charcoal heater, we sang songs of praise that Uncle Sempi taught us. We listened with rapt attention as Mama read us the story of Old Man Moses and his miracles. We laughed with delight as Julie told us jokes she read from comic books.

We had nothing for tomorrow but we laughed for joy. Our little hearts were filled with so much faith in a God who really looked after the fatherless.


Member Comments
Member Date
darlene hight10/25/04
What blessed read for me first thing this morning! Thanks Al it is a great entry!
Corinne Smelker 10/25/04
If this is a true story, then it is both poignant and hopeful at the same time.

What a wonderful story of the Lord's provision.
Alan Vaca10/26/04
This is a true story. I was around three when it happened more than 20 yrs back. God has been good to us. Now all my sisters are settled, my brother died last year (his short life brought glory to God!) and I am working to build a career. My main interest is in songwriting and this is the first time I am attempting something like this. And English, being a foriegn language to me (I'm from India), words don't flow naturally. Will greatly appreciate your feedback. Thanks, God will bless you too.
Lynda Lee Schab 10/26/04
What an inspiration you are! Thanks for sharing this wonderful testimony!
You have great story-telling capabilities too - awesome entry!
Blessings, Lynda
Melanie Kerr 10/26/04
What an amazing tsetimony to God's faithfullness. I have been on the other side of the story - giving a bag of groceries to someone because God said to do it, and not realising it was someone's answer to prayer.
Martha Robinson10/26/04
A great article! I think it would be great for this week's topic, "Poor". Thanks for sharing.
Marina Rojas10/27/04
This was a wonderful story of how God truly answers prayers. His faithfulness is a blessing beyond compare. And I was glad to see the family laughed even in their heartbreaking situation. I'm looking forward to seeing more of your work.
Debbie OConnor10/27/04
This is just beautiful. Made me cry and smile. A wonderful example of God's faithful provision and your family's faith in Him. Very well written!
Phyllis Inniss 10/28/04
God is so good and merciful that if we believe in Him, He will be there for us. I'm glad your mother took you all to the church and prayed. This was a good example for you and your siblings. Blessings.
Kristin Slavik10/28/04
Alan,
This was a well told story. I did not realize until I read your coment that english is not your native language. You did a nice job and even put a few who have spoken English their whole lives to shame. Keep writing, I look forward to seeing more!
Kristin
L.M. Lee10/29/04
having been here, I know the joy that came when God answered.
Glenda Lagerstedt10/30/04
Alan, well told story, both humbling and uplifting. What a mighty God we serve. Thanks for sharing.