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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Failure (03/01/04)

By Ann Marie Lindenmeyer


Her eyes looked dark and cold. Her spirit was gone and a darkness had settled around her very being. The path she had been traveling was like a vicious circle, always returning to the same black place over and over again.

She wondered if there was a place called Hell because she felt like she was living in it. Pain consumed her heart and tore at her inner strength. Her body was weak and weary from the emotional struggles she faced continually in her life.

What was wrong with her, she often wondered. Happiness never seemed to stay with her for very long. Happiness was something other people experienced and enjoyed. Where did they find that piece of mind.

She felt like a failure. It seemed everything she tried to do didn't turn out the way she wanted, or she could never quite meet the expectations she faced. Whose expectations was she trying to meet anyway, she pondered.

She spent time alone, secluded from the world and delved in her pain and suffering. She didn't seem to care about much of anything anymore. Sometimes she wrote her innermost feelings in her journal, a journal she kept hidden from the world, because writing released some of the pain. People might think she was crazy if they read her thoughts; deep, dark, sinful, and depressing.

Where was this God people talked about anyway. She often would contemplate this thought in her mind. If there was such a supernatural being that was in control, why did He cause her so much pain. He hadn't saved her from the darkness she felt. He hadn't given her things she wanted. Her life had always been so difficult to bare. Her childhood was a horrific experience of many abuses. He let people hurt her and cause her immense pain and damage that continued to sting at her very core. If there was such a God, she felt that He had failed her.

The darkness consumed her day by day until she finally felt that there was nothing left. She faced a bottomless, dark pit of pain that never seemed to end. Then it came, the day she had been imagining in her mind so many times before. She wrote in her journal her last and final dark thoughts of her life. She still had the bottle of pain pills from when she had a small surgery. She had been saving them for this special day. She was ready.

When her body started feeling the effects of what she had done, she felt frightened. She began to pray, for the first time in her life, and asked God to send an angel to come and save her. Then it became black, but only for a moment. A light soon appeared and beckoned her. Toward the light, she heard a soft voice in the distance. The voice faintly whispered to her to turn back and she would find her angel, that he was waiting. She squinted her vision to try to see through the foggy light to make out the image speaking to her. Again, the voice whispered to her to turn back. She could faintly see an image of a man. He resembled someone she had seen before in many pictures. Could this be Jesus?

She awakened to a loud siren, whirring above her. Where was she now, she wondered, completely disoriented. Then she saw him. He was the most gentle man she had ever encountered. He spoke softly to her, just like the whispering voice in the light. He told her she was going to be okay as he cared for her in the back of the ambulance. There was a faint light behind him that shined so that she could scarcely make out his face, but his voice soothed and comforted her very soul. She closed her eyes and listened to his soft words.

She prayed once again. This time she believed that God was there. She cried out to Him for mercy and forgiveness for all that she had done. She felt a peace that she had never experienced in her life as she vowed to give her life over to Him. She discovered something she had never known, unconditional love, a love that showed mercy and grace toward her as a precious child of God.

They arrived at the hospital and she was quickly wheeled into the emergency room. With the bright lights, she was finally able to see his face. His eyes were full of concern and love, and a cross hung at his neck. He spoke once more before he left with a caring soft whisper. She will always remember his words, "God loves you and there is so much in this life worth living for." She soon discovered that his words rang true, the angel that had come to her on her darkest night.

Copyright 2004, Ann Marie "Ree" Brown.

Member Comments
Member Date
Corinne Smelker 03/08/04
Compelling story. I liked the terse sentences, it adds to the effect of her life that is out of control
Dave Wagner03/09/04
A strong piece. I'm glad you didn't taint it by having a "they fell in love and lived happily ever after" type ending. I was afraid it was going there. I'm glad you kept it strong.

Very rich, emotional words. I appreciate your ability to carry the reader into a dark and damaged heart like that...I can only hope that it isn't because you've been there yourself. "...and tore at her inner strength...that continued to sting at her very core." That's a hard road.

>> She spent time alone, secluded from the world and delved in her pain and suffering.

Thatís not very productive, eh?

>> Sometimes she wrote her innermost feelings in her journal...<<

Thatís more productive.

>> She began to pray, for the first time in her lifeÖ<<

The very definition of productive, as she (and we) found out.

Nice work. Hard, and nice.
Mary Elder-Criss03/10/04
From someone who has previously suffered from major depression, and feelings of utter hopelessness, I could totally relate to this article. You did extremely well in capturing her emotions, both before, and after realizing God's love. Thanks for this. Mary
Lynne Cox03/12/04
This was well-written and I related to those dark emotions.
Donna Anderson03/13/04
God's love is always brightest in our darkest hour! Good story! :)