- March 2014
- December 2013
- June 2013
- March 2013
- September 2013
- From the Editor’s Desk
- Bloom Where You Are Planted and Where You Are Transplanted
- The Change Game
- Ten Tender Weeks: The Countdown
- The Chap Who Lives in a Flat
- Conspiracy Theory
- The Closers
- He Knows
- Surprising Steps with a Friendly Wind
- If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It!
- Walking the Talk
- Message in a Bottle
- January 2013
By Annalise Hunnicutt
(Winner of the 13-15 Years Summer of Hope Writing Contest at FaithWriters for Kids)
The scene played through my mind again as I tossed and turned in my bed. I shut my eyes tightly. No, Paige, no! Don’t remind yourself about it!
I turned over again and peered at my alarm clock. 12:02 flashed in bright red, giving my nightstand an eerie glow. I was restless, tossing and turning in the summer heat. The scene from the TV played through my mind for the umpteenth time: An unconscious man, in blood-stained marine attire and missing his left leg, was being rushed into the back of an ambulance. A reporter talked over the video about the man’s wife and two kids, ages three and seven. That was all I had heard before the TV was shut off.
What if that happened to Daddy? That was my worst nightmare. What if he got injured and couldn’t walk anymore? What if he ended up paralyzed? Or what if he—
Paige! No! He will not die!
I thought about the last time Daddy left. I thought about the last hug he gave me, the last kiss on my forehead, and the last time he said, “I love you.” His last words to us were, “I love you! God be with you!” I felt a tear run down my cheek. I missed Daddy so much. I longed for his morning hugs, his daily “I love you,” and his nightly tuck-ins. I think about him and worry about him every second of my day.
Everything was quiet except for the chirping of summer crickets in the heat. I rolled over and spotted my Bible sitting on the nightstand. I reached over and grabbed it. It was Daddy’s Bible, and he gave it to me right before he left. I ran my fingers across the tattered cover. Gramps had gotten it from his father when he was about my age. Then he gave it to Dad, and now it’s mine.
I thumbed through the pages. There was a sticky note marking one of them. I stopped and looked at the page. A few verses were underlined, and there were notes written in the margin. I started reading one of the underlined passages.
Psalm 9:18 “For the needy shall not always be forgotten: the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever.”
I flipped a few pages ahead and found more underlined verses.
Psalm 31:23-24 “O love the LORD, all ye his saints: for the LORD preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer. Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.”
Psalms 33:18-22 “Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waiteth for the LORD: he is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name. Let thy mercy, O LORD, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.”
I felt another tear roll down my cheek. But it wasn’t from sadness or from missing Dad. It was touching tears; tears from the Lord. I had forgotten about God when Dad left. I wasn’t putting my hope in him or trusting in him like I should. I wasn’t believing in God or believing that He would take care of this and protect Daddy while he was fighting in the Marines. I needed to make a change. Change my thinking, my actions, and my beliefs.
“Dear Lord,” I started, “I am sorry for what I have done. I have betrayed you and not trusted you. Please forgive me.”
I finally felt a sense of peace. A sense that everything would turn out okay.
(Scripture from the King James Version of the Bible)