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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Measure (01/10/13)

TITLE: A Clear Distraction!
By Gail Burks


“Who's Elaine,”? I asked my 20 year old son, as he, his dad and I played Scrabble at the dining room table.

Placing his 40-point word on the board, he casually stated, “She goes to school with me.”

“Where does she live?”

No response.

As we played, more information began to surface: This mysterious woman was a few years older and separated from her husband of three years, with no children. Her husband had some type of profit-making business, while she attended school full-time, like our son. She was not a Christian --- he was.

“And, she's married​?” his dad asked, cautiously.

“Yeah, but they are getting divorced soon,” clearly becoming aggravated by the barrage of questions.

Of course, this back and forth discussion did nothing to deter my son from winning. He's always been an excellent player of games, i.e. Spades, Connect, Clue, Monopoly --- you name it--- he plays it and wins, NO Exceptions.

“Well, you won,” I said in a notably surly tone, while clearing the tiles and board.

I thought back on his Freshman year at State University when his final grades indicated 'failing'. What a shock! A further blow is when he found himself expelled for poor academic performance.

Nonetheless, our son failed and was dismissed after Freshman year. Never to return.

Once home, with his head tucked between his legs, HE ALONE applied to several schools, with no parental help. Then, one day, he received a call from a baseball coach, indicating scholarship monies and a financial package awaited him.

After much thought, we accepted the offer. We were very excited and grateful to the Lord for this 'second chance'. Also, Ricky's grades were fantastic. But then, we heard this news about Elaine. This was a clear distraction --we felt--- from the enemy.

As the months progressed --- April through August --- more discussions, intervention and prayer ensued. Even some telephone conversations with the 'distractor' herself.

Not only was our son clearly 'caught up', but his best friend at the time, encouraged the relationship.

Never mind, that his on-and-off again girlfriend, a Christian, whom he met at State University, was still in the picture, somewhat. Our son, was unable to see the forest for the trees.

Later, that summer, while we were on a college tour, along with his younger brother, God allowed everything to be exposed. On our last day in Florida, while eating breakfast, Ricky detonated a bomb.

“I have something to tell you guys.”

His brother kept his head down in the plate – not a good sign. An inner voice whispered “brace yourself,” as I tried to anticipate his next sentence.

“What is it?”

“Elaine's pregnant,” in a matter of fact tone.

The only sound was the tingling of my fork as it hit the plate and my thumping heart. “Oh, Ricky!”

A long sigh emanated from my husband, and our other son just held his breath.


“I don't know. It just happened,” rather nonchalantly.

“So, now, what are you planning to do? Is she still married?” I blurted out. His father was silent.

“I'm finishing school. She'll be divorced soon.”

“What about her husband? Does he know about you? And, how do you know it's your baby?”

“Mom, I know it's mine.” Sounding rather smug about the whole thing.

Returning home the next day, my husband and I encouraged him to get a paternity test. Just to be sure.

I prayed fervently, calling my prayer partner and the 700 Club.

Often, when reading the Word, my attention was drawn to the following scripture:
…...Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. (Romans 12:3)

I soon realized, as parents, we had to be careful how this situation was handled. Difficult as it was, however, it eventually worked out.

After graduating early, Rick got engaged and married his true love from State University. He is now employed as a teacher and has a thriving internet business. More importantly, he and his wife are the proud parents of a baby boy.

Elaine decided against having the baby and later reconciling with her husband. Also, I had the opportunity to witness to her on several occasions.

Faith and prayer. Immeasurable.

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This article has been read 330 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Bonnie Bowden 01/18/13
This was a captivating story from beginning to end. I was sad to learn Elaine decided not to keep her baby.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 01/18/13
This is a fascinating story. You pulled me in by introducing the conflict right away.

I noticed some little errors like a comma, then an end quote and a question mark. The question mark should have been inside the quote marks. You also have incomplete sentences after some dialog. Ex: clearly aggravated...didn't have a subject. A good way to fix this would be to do some showing. Ex: His face turned red as he pounded his fist on the table.
Something like that would identify the speaker while painting a picture for the reader.

I'm not sure if this is a true story, but it feels like it is. If so, I admire your courage in sharing it. It doesn't matter how old our kids get we still worry and cringe sometimes over their decision. You did a breast job of showing how praying and handing the problem over to God can make all of the differences in the world. Nice job.
Terry R A Eissfeldt 01/20/13
I liked your story. The end seemed a bit abrupt. Good job.
C D Swanson 01/22/13
Awww, I was hoping Elaine kept the baby. But, in any case...good story.
God bless~