Stories

Three German Students Surprise A Homeless Guy

Such a sweet, sweet story. Break out the Kleenex. You’ll need it.

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The Sand Creek Massacre

I read this story in the book Under God by tobyMac and Michael Tait. The story is so tragic and sad that I couldn’t help posting it here. Here is a short summary of what happened.

Old men, women, and children. These were the people that Colonel John Chivington attacked at Sand Creek in 1864. On that day, 163 Cheyenne and Arapaho were killed, two thirds of them women, children, and infants. Quoting from the story, which was quoting Silas Soule, a witness of the attack:

“It is hard to see little shildren on their knees have their brains beat out by men professing to be ‘civilized,'” wrote Silas. “One squaw was wounded and a fellow took a hatchet to finish her, she held her arms up to defend her, and he cut one arm off and held the other with one hand and dashed a hatchet through her brain. I saw two Indian’s hold one another’s hands, chased until they were exhausted, when they kneeled down, clasped each other around the neck and were both shot together.”… (Under God, pg. 333)

Our history is filled with so many atrocities just like this one. Wars, segregation, the KKK’s lynchings. So many horrifying stories. We’re seeing more of that even now: terrorist attacks, school bombings and shootings, ongoing worldwide slavery (including in the United States) and drug and alcohol abse.

It may seem like an impossible situation that’s out of our hands. We can’t change the past, but with the help of God, we can sure change the future. So ask him to show you how you can make a difference. And then do it.

The World of the Writer

Hey guys!

I’m so excited! I just got a new blog called The World of the Writer! From now on, most of my stories and thoughts on writing will be posted over there, so please check it out! I’d love feedback on it, and definitely be expecting the theme to change. I’m still looking for the perfect (free) one, so hang in there! Thank you guys so much! 😀

Interview from the Writer’s Desk: Haven Agnelli

Haven Agnelli is a character I’ve been working on for a new five book series I’ve started working on. I found this really helpful for learning about her. And Bri is technically me with a name change. Hope you enjoy! 🙂

———-

I sigh, crumple up another sheet of paper, and toss it on the ever growing stack. I grab another sheet, and a sting of pain grabs my finger. Paper cut. I hear a knock at my door. “Yes? Come in.”

My secretary pokes his head into my office. “Haven Agnelli is here, Bri.”

I smile. Finally. “Let her in, Benedict.” He nods and steps out. I prepare a sheet of paper and a pencil and put a small bandage on my finger. Maybe this interview will be helpful. I need to get the juices flowing.

A fairly tall teenage girl steps hesitantly into my office. Her smooth brown hair falls below her shoulders; it’s loose, no ponytail or anything. She has short bangs, just on the right, and her hair is parted to the right. She looks sweet and shy with her golden-brown eyes and soft face. Something about her face makes her look young, around fourteen, rather than her actual age of seventeen. She looks nervous, so I offer her an encouraging smile and motion her to the chair in front of my desk before scribbling down notes on her appearance.

I finish the notes with a flourish and turn to her. “I’m glad you could make it,” I tell her. “I think this interview will help me out a lot.”

She nods a little nervously. “No problem. I love helping others out.” Her voice is soft and somewhat musical.

I smile. “So I’ve heard,” I say, jotting down another note on my paper. I look up. “Well, let’s get started. Can you tell me about your family?”

Her face reddens slightly. “Not very much to tell, I’m afraid,” she says quietly. “My dad left when I was five, and my mom died when I was eight. I never had any siblings,” she adds. I nod as I start on another sheet of paper. “My aunt and uncle took care of me while their son was at boarding school, but after he came back, I took the back seat. I felt lonely, rejected, and alone. I was also often bored, so I started working on developing my Gift. When I turned thirteen, I left them to get my own job and so I could work on my Gift more. I still keep in touch with them, though.”

“What did you do after you left?” I ask, writing furiously.

Haven smiles. “I found a job at a bakery in a small town. The owner let me have a room at his house to live in, staying with him and his wife, and I was allowed to keep any leftover baked goods that didn’t sell. I gave those to the poor people that I served with my Gift. The poor people were my closest friends.”

“And what is your Gift?” I ask as I finish writing down her back story.

“I have the Gift of healing,” she replies. “I can’t bring people back from the dead, but I can heal injuries, wounds, sickness – even little things like headaches or nausea.”

“Remind me to call you next time I stub my toe.” I grin. She laughs, a soft, sweet sound, and I make a note of that before checking my question list. “All right, now we’re going to get to some of the harder questions. How would you honestly describe your personality?”

Haven frowns, thinking. “Well, I would say I’m definitely an introvert. I don’t do much voluntary socializing, and I don’t talk very much. I’m the kind of person who finds a quiet spot in a social setting to watch all the action from. So, basically, I’m shy and quiet, although friendly, kind people who take the time to talk to me can pull me out of my shell. But I must admit that I’m still quiet after that; it just becomes more of a, uh, thoughtful quiet, rather than a shy quiet, I guess.” Her brow wrinkles as she thinks. “Most people treat me like I’m fragile, and they worry about me, but I’m really fairly strong, emotionally and mentally, at least.”

“Are you a hard worker?” I ask.

She nods. “If someone sets me at a task, or if I see something that needs to be done, I’ll work hard at it. I’m not much of a leader, so I’d rather be following someone else’s instructions about what to do than telling others what to do.”

I smile. “I understand. Okay, now, here’s a pretty hard one. What are some of your faults, or bad habits?”

Haven makes a face. “Well, how many faults do you want? For one thing, I struggle with seeing myself as I really am. I’m getting better at it, but I still have trouble with focusing on my good characteristics instead of my bad ones. Sometimes, well, a lot of the time, I struggle with speaking up and sharing my thoughts or opinions with others. I feel unwanted and useless sometimes. And I have a fear of people disliking me or making fun of me. I’ve been working on taking my focus off of what others think of me, but it’s hard. Most of my faults are insecurities.”

I nod. “I think we all struggle with that. Anything else?”

“I’m sure there’s plenty more, but I can’t think of any right now,” Haven says.

I smile and add a note on my sheet. Humble. “Okay, what are some of your strengths and good points?”

She thinks for a minute. “Well,” she begins slowly, “I’ve learned a lot about human nature and motives and things like that. There’s not really that many,” she admits.

I laugh. “It’s okay, tell me all.” I underline the word humble.

Haven sighs. “Well, people sometimes say I’m generous and kind and compassionate. I have a heart for serving others, and I always try to be loyal and not hurt anyone’s feelings.”

I check the next question on my list. “Okay, last one. What is your Name, the one the King assigned to you?”

She smiles. “The Healer.”

I nod and write it down. “Thank you so much for the interview, Haven. It’s been very helpful, and it was so nice to get to know you.”

Haven smiles her shy smile. “You’re welcome. I’m so glad I could help you.” She reaches over and touches the bandage on my finger where I got the paper cut earlier, and then she leaves. I pull off the bandage and smile at my healed finger.

Those Stories

What types of Scripture do you learn best from? Proverbs? Psalms? Paul’s Letters? The stories? I definitely learn best from the stories.

For me, stories are just easier to interpret. I’ve spent so much time in literature classes learning about finding themes in stories and analyzing them that it comes natural to me now. Being a writer is probably part of it, too.

And there are so many stories in the Bible, too. Not just the ones everyone knows, like Adam and Eve, or Daniel and the Lion’s Den, or Noah’s Ark, or David and Goliath. Stories like Jephthah’s (horrible) Vow and Obadiah (Elijah’s sidekick). Jephthah made a vow that turned out so horribly that the result could have made a movie about him rated R (possibly) and Obadiah saved a hundred of God’s prophets. Some of these little known stories are really cool, and we can learn a lot from them. (Like not to make vows that you might not want to keep, Jephthah!!!!!!!!! Seriously, as my youth leader said, what did he think was going to come out of the door first, his pet goat??????)

So, enough ranting. I have no idea where I was going with this. So…

Which category teaches you the most, or is the easiest for you to learn from?

And…

What’s your favorite (or most remembered) little-known Bible story?

Story Starters: 6-7-14

Story Starters are prompts that must be the first part of your story. To participate, please link back to this post and put a link to your post in the comments. My favorite post for each story starter will be reblogged on Friday.*

Flash Fiction (less than 1,000 words):

Why do things always happen when you’re doing something embarrassing?

Short Story (Over a 1,000 words, but we’ll set the limit at 10,000 words)

The low glow of a fire on the horizon made me quicken my steps.

*Please note: If there are no posts linked to this post and no links posted in comments, there will be no post reblogged. Also, any stories with anything inappropriate will not be chosen. Thank you!

The Plot Of Life

When I’m writing, I must have a plot before I start. The main reason for this is that if I don’t have a plot, my story will drift along aimlessly. But guess what. With God in control of our lives, we’ll never be drifting along aimlessly. He has a plan in mind, and we can always trust him to guide us in the right direction to help him achieve his amazing story.

Book Review: I Was There by Chris Martin

I’ve finally gotten around to typing up this book review for the latest book from fellow blogger and writer Chris Martin. I hope you’ll buy his book and check out his blog after you finish reading this! 🙂

This was a great book. It told those same stories from the Bible in a new and interesting way. The first-person viewpoint is definitely a great asset in this book, helping the stories provoke emotion. The way Chris Martin develops the characters and draws us near to them makes you want to know them even better. I love how he uses the characters’ back stories to help us identify with them. It’s difficult to develop characters in the small amount of space available in short stories, and Chris does this wonderfully. His descriptions of the actions and emotions of the characters are also done very well. He tells the stories in such an emotional and thought-provoking way that you can’t help but feel for the characters. I love the way that Chris brings a new perspective to the stories he retells. I believe that these stories would even be interesting for non-believers. The only negative point of the book are a few small grammatical errors, which could easily be fixed with some extra proofreading and editing. Chris Martin certainly has a talent for writing that makes the stories and characters seem even more relatable. This book is definitely worth the read.

Story Starters: 5-10-14

Story Starters are prompts that must be the first part of your story. To participate, please link back to this post and put a link to your post in the comments. My favorite post for each story starter will be reblogged on Friday.*

Flash Fiction (less than 1,000 words):

“It’s over.”

Short Story (Over a 1,000 words, but we’ll set the limit at 10,000 words)

Some day those pandas are going to come back to get revenge.

*Please note: If there are no posts linked to this post, there will be no post reblogged. Also, any stories with anything inappropriate will not be chosen. Thank you!

Before You Meet Prince Charming by Sarah Mally

This book was wonderful. Absolutely wonderful.

Girls, you need to read this book. It’s half-fiction, half-nonfiction. The story is wonderful, and Sarah Mally writes the advice in between the sections like she’s your older sister sharing her own experiences with you. It’s definitely a must-read, especially for girls who are boy-crazy or find themselves thinking about guys and dating a lot. Here are some of my favorite quotes (the ones in italics are from the fiction parts):

  • I have known many young ladies who were consumed with dating and thoughts about boyfriends, and thus wasted the years of their youth.
  • If you truly desire to guard your heart, then it should be obvious to you that you ought to avoid any influences that distract your thoughts or stir up wrong desires.
  • A heart that is truly guarded must have no vacancies – no empty spaces that need to be filled, no voids that leave open places and room for the enemy to get in.
  • “Be ye on important business?” asked the alligator. “Be ye the castle receptionist?” returned the knight.
  • … I want to remind you that our primary motivation for caution and wisdom is not to avoid pain.

I hope everyone will enjoy reading this book! Read it! 🙂