Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Beginning and End (04/16/09)
- TITLE: About Face
By Helen Murray
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Jordan responded quickly. Kelly was the kindest person in his young life, and he didn’t mind doing messages for him.
“Oh, and your mother wants some diet lemonade too.”
“OK Kelly, Come on Tania” he called his young companion.
They returned quickly to the house full of people – it was always the centre for the local jobless community. Kelly was still lying with the two tiny dogs. His partner, Samantha, sat with him on the couch directing everything that was happening around her, and reading the tea-leaves as best she might. Children played purposelessly in the garden and no-one paid them any attention except to berate their fighting.
Graciously Geraldine closed the door on her husband and her life up to the present day. She had entertained in her own home the very man he had taken as a sexual partner and, her heart broken, she sobbed inconsolably. How could a Christian man turn his life around so abjectly, and leave her to bring up three children alone?
“Marriage? I could never face that again” she told her pastor fifteen years later. Her children were not following her faith, and she struggled with their behaviours, while helping with her son’s baby because his partner had psychological problems and wasn’t coping. She had managed on a part-time salary while working full time at a Christian school who stated they were unable to pay her full time. Her extra time was her gift to the Lord. When the school finally released her she began church administration in a voluntary capacity. Released into ministry there, her glorious alto voice led the singing, and she unleashed a gift in working with the elderly.
She was considerably surprised one day, after nineteen lonely years, to find herself saying to God, “I’m ready for marriage now.”
Her friend Sandy brought Kelly along to church one day. Working with the shambled, jobless, hopeless community for years, she had managed to get them to come in occasionally for morning tea and some personal attention. Little by little they began to attend services, and finally Kelly had arrived with them. He’d been listening to her talking, and also to his brother in law who was a servant of God. At the service he was over-awed by the truth and majesty of God, and gave his life. It was dramatic indeed as he received instant healing of alcoholism and smoking, left his de facto partner and took up residence with his sister. Church attendance became important, and often he dropped in to church during the week for a cuppa and chat.
Geraldine saw this, said to God that she’d like to disciple this young man, took an interest in him, opening the word constantly with him, feeding his urgent hunger for it. They became friends and he shared his love of poetry with her over cups of coffee.
“Do you like him?”
“Yes Father, I do.”
Kelly asked her to go out with him, and again over coffee, they discussed his new studies concerning working with the aged. He was enamoured of life free from drink and of his third career.
“I know a most elegant woman
With a song in her spirit for God.
Her gentle compassion delights all she meets
And her smile is a blessing untold.
Her heart is the start of her beauty,
The peace in her face can’t be fake.
Every word that she says lights the whole room up,
And her strength is for gentleness sake.
I’ve fallen in love with this lady.
I hope she might take me to heart.
We’ve spent many hours of fellowship now
So I cannot bear being apart.
There is only one resolution
For this terrible quandary now.
Will you be my beloved forever?
I’ll love you forever, I vow.”
“Are you asking me to marry you?’
“I am that .“
“Go on then. Ask me.”
“Will you please marry me?
“OK then. Soon”
“We’ll need three months.”
“For preparations, and invitations”
“OK. Three months.”
“Are you going to kiss me?”
“What do you think?”
These days they work joyfully together with song, poetry and stories, in the field of the care of the aged, constantly bringing someone home from the very brink of hell itself.
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