Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Hide and Seek (08/07/08)
TITLE: I'm So Glad You Won
By Marlene Austin
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“Grandpa! Jason’s cheating! I can’t tag him if he’s up in the tree!”
Just like Jason. Climb. Why let gravity hold you down? “Now, Jason, you must play fair.”
“There’s nothing in the rules that says you can’t hide in a tree.” Being older seemed to grant him the right to be cocky now and then.
“Well, Mandy, the way I see it, Jason’s not really cheating… but, looks to me like you’re alright after all. You’ve got him ‘treed’. He’s gotta come down for something – to get a drink, or food, or, at least, to go to the bathroom.”
At this thought, Mandy began laughing, then, taunting, “I’ve got you tree-e-ed. You’ll have to pee-e-e!”
Upon hearing Mandy’s chant, Jonathan, the youngest brother, had to join in. As usual, he had been tagged first, being the youngest and heaviest, he was, also, the slowest. Bill decided this would be a good time to go in and get the lemonade ready.
When he returned to the porch, the children were already there, rolling around on the cool concrete, joining in joyous laughter, as only children can. Mandy and Jonathan were laughing at “getting the better” of their older brother; Jonathan, having a keen sense of humor, was laughing at the truly inventive song Mandy had created.
As the group enjoyed the cooling refreshment, Grandpa remarked, “Your game of ‘hide and seek’ reminds me of a Bible story.”
“Really, Grandpa, they played ‘hide and seek’ in the Bible?” Jonathan queried.
“Well, no, I just said it reminds me of a story. You see, once there was a little boy, about your age, Jason. He was a shepherd, which meant that he had to care for the sheep, all day long, while they grazed.”
“That means ‘eating the grass’, doesn’t it, Grandpa?” Mandy chimed in.
“Yes, that’s right. Well, one evening when it was time to round them up, so he could go home to get some supper and a good night’s sleep, the boy discovered that one of the sheep was missing. He couldn’t leave the poor little thing out all by itself, all night.”
“’Cause a wolf might get it, huh, Grandpa?”
“Yes, Jason. There was always the danger of hungry wolves looking for stray or hurt sheep. Well, this boy was very conscientious. He didn’t give up, even though he had to look a very long time.”
“So, where did he find it, Grandpa?” Jonathan was deeply engrossed in Grandpa’s telling.
“He found it caught in a bramble bush. It’s thick fur had snagged on a rough branch and the more it struggled to get loose, the more entangled it became. So, the shepherd took out his knife and cut the fur, which set the sheep free.”
“That’s what I would have done,” Jason asserted.
“So, they all got home safe that night, didn’t they, Grandpa?”
“Yes, Mandy. They all got home safe.”
By this time the children had emptied their glasses and were refreshed enough to play again.
“You wanna play, Grandpa?” Jonathan invited.
“No, I think I’ll just sit here and remember the last time I played ‘hide and seek’ with your grandma.”
“Who won?” they all asked at about the same time.
“Your grandma, won, of course. She was conscientious, too. Our game lasted 30 years, but she never gave up. I hid from God, never going to church like your grandma. But, she sought after me, until I finally said I’d go just to get some peace. I found a greater peace than I even knew existed. I just wish I had had more time to go to church with her. Now, I’ll just here and remember that game, while you go play yours.”
“I’m it!” Mandy yelled, darting away.
Left sitting alone once again, rocking, a gentle breeze touched Bill’s arm. Thank you, honey. I’m so glad you won.
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