Short Stories

Short stories that will inspire, encourage, educate and even change the way you see everyday life.

My Christmas tree is still up

My Christmas tree is still up. I know — Christmas is over and it's time to take the decorations and lights down and get on with life.

But Christmas isn't really over until after January 6th, the day when many Christians celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany from December 25th until January 6th. These days are a collection of 12 feast days beginning with Christmas day and ending after the revelation of the wise men. The revelation is called Epiphany or the unveiling or finding God in the flesh, (the baby Jesus in the manger).

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Having Fun at the Mediavine Conference 2019

“Blogging is so much more than writing,” the woman told me when I introduced myself as a writer at the Mediavine conference I recently attended. Her words were a meer peek into what I was going to learn in the next three days.

I have been a professional freelance writer for 30 years. I am a retired nurse and health educator, so I have written for many health venues, but, as a Christian writer and speaker, my passion is to write stories that educate and encourage my readers.

The difference between writers and...

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Please Read Me a Story

One of the best memories I have from my childhood is the time my mother read to me. When it was cold outside, we sat on the couch late at night with the fire blazing in the fireplace. I leaned against her shoulder and watched the lines on her face disappear as she used her voice to mimic the characters she read about.

She laughed and pretended to cry to make the story come to life, and sometimes in those moments, she looked younger to me. It was our special time together to read and talk about books. It could have been her ...

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Turn Your Light On

On my Facebook page recently, there was a post about how the theology of “feel-goodism,” “universal tolerance,” and “moral relativism,” which are the highlights of the New Age Movement.

Another post about the new Hey-Google device that could be bought at Walmart and simply addressed as “Hey Google” to find the answers of encyclopedias gone by about the New Age, Allah, and Budda. However, Google does not recite the definition of Jesus. As a result of consumer concern, Google has disabled ...

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The Power of Sharing our Family Stories

I had never traveled anywhere alone. Riding a bus from Macon to Atlanta, Georgia with strangers was not a long distance, I know, but it was frightening and exciting for an 18-year-old.

My mom died when I was 13 and I lived with my brother and sister-in-law. The trip was a graduation gift to visit my aunts, who I hardly knew. They thought it would be good for me to hear stories of my mom and get to know what she was like when she was a young girl.

The bus arrived late that night at a very busy bus station on Peachtree street, bu...

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My Vietnam Soldier’s Story

My husband was a cook in the Vietnam war.  One morning after praying for God's protection for himself and his fellow comrades, he felt he should go into the mess hall early to prepare his baking duties.  He had to convince the head cook to allow him do his work during the evening meal time. Normally, he started his baking after dinner and worked late while the soldiers stayed in the lighted building to do their letter writing and play cards. However, they all had to leave early when he closed the building for the night.

Next to the Me...

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STANDING YOUR GROUND

When I noticed the two women getting out of the convertible in front of the hotel, I had a feeling there was going to be an awkward moment. My husband spotted them the same time I did and proceeded to do exactly what I was hoping he wouldn’t do.

“Excuse me, ma’am,“ he called out. The two women looked up curiously as they stepped out of the car. “Are you aware that you’re parking in a handicapped parking place?” he asked. I was sure everyone in the parking lot and possibly all of those on South...

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You’re Almost There….

"When it was over, I lay spent and exhausted on the cold, hard earth…never to be ranked with the average and mediocre..." This is a quote from one of our late presidents, my daughter sent me when I was toiling with one of life's many problems. She continued with, "In essence…I am a winner, and I will not say it's over until I have given everything. Until there is nothing left in me to give. That makes me special and unique." I keep this close to me and read it when I am struggling or just want to feel the strength of my children....

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What would the world be without color?

A wonderful time of the year! Color is everywhere, and everything has color, especially during these beautiful Autumn and Fall days. The variety of colors are endless, and it fills our world with beauty.

What would the world be without color? As an educational writer, that's the question I sent to an elementary school recently. The answers ranged from no changing leaves, no beautiful flowers, no rainbows, and no jelly beans! What an awful thought!

"I think that the world would be depressing because you wouldn't see the beauty o...

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What are the things that really matter?

I ran across a good illustration this week that paints an excellent picture of how important it is to stop and think about what we do with the hours in our day. It was about a philosophy professor who wanted to teach his students a lesson that went beyond the classroom.

When his students begin to noisily arrive for his class, the professor stood patiently at his desk with just a few items in front of him.

After the bell rang and the young men and women settle down, he wordless picked up a large empty mayonnaise jar and proceede...

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My Sister is My Hero

My sister Juanell is my hero , I called her Nell. Her name was never in the newspaper and she was never on television. She didn’t finish school, because she was a wife and mother by age 16. When she was 26, her husband walked out on her after she gave birth to their seventh child. Frances was born with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome(LGS), a rare and severe type of epilepsy that starts in childhood.

I was a child when Nell was an adult. I watched her go through many hard times. Some of those times she was angry because life was ...

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It is never too early to talk to your children

The subject was drugs. My son was telling me he thought his children would receive good information about drugs in their schools, but it was still the parent's responsibility to talk about it at home.

I agreed with him, and reminded him that we did the same thing for him and his brother and sister. "I know, Mom," he said carefully. "But you were too late.”

Trying not to show how dumbfounded I was, I asked him what exactly he meant. "By the time you asked me about drugs, Mom, I had already tried them," he said as gently as...

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How Not to Order Mexican Food

My husband loves Mexican food. When we lived in south Texas, he worked very hard to learn Spanish. As a hospital chaplain and a nurse, we needed to know how to speak and understand Spanish to better communicate with our patients.

One afternoon, not long after we had completed our Spanish classes, he picked me up from work early. He said he wanted to go to Mexico for some Mexican food. We only lived about 20 miles north of Progreso, a Mexican border town.

I pointed out the fact that we had great Mexican restaurants right...

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Breast Cancer Awareness

If you find a lump in your breast or underarm area, you should see your doctor right away.  The good news is that most lumps are noncancerous.  Sometimes they will go away on their own, which is why your doctor may schedule a return visit for three to six months.

However, sometimes the lump or change in breast tissue may be cancer.  It is very important that you go to your follow up visit.  If, at any time, you feel like you need a second opinion, you should probably get one. My friend, Jill, did and she is alive today 21 years later....

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Mothers stressing over their children

It was just a small, round gold loop placed in his left ear, like the one many of his friends wore, but it bothered me. Why? I am not sure. It was probably because it represented rebellion against what was the norm in our family; that is, girls wore earrings, and guys didn’t.

It could have been the vain concern that our friends might think our parenting skills were weak, or the fear that he would reject other rules we thought were important.  So, I did what frustrated mothers do; I scolded him, nagged him, and finally pleaded hi...

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The worries of our children

According to legend, Guatemalan children tell one worry to each of their hand-made Worry Dolls, placing them under their pillow when going to bed at night. In the morning, the dolls have gifted them with wisdom and knowledge to eliminate their worries.

We often use the expression: “I feel as carefree as a child.” But children are not always carefree. In fact, children have many worries. I am afraid there would be a sellout on worry dolls if they really helped.

Children worry about their parents and siblings dying, t...

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Take time to enjoy mornings

One morning I was getting the children ready for school. It was the usual too busy morning with the kids running around trying to find their socks and school books. I was late for work, and the bus was due soon. I felt my job as a mom was to make sure everyone was nicely dressed, fed, and thoroughly prepared for the day ahead.

I'm not even sure what I was making for breakfast. I just know it was fast. The children were unusually slothful this particular morning, not moving as quickly as I thought they should. This was making me irrita...

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Going Back to School at 54!

I retired from nursing and decided to return to college when I was age 54, and now my brain had to open a folder I had put away a long time ago.

Algebra has always been like electrical wires in my brain connecting the positives and negatives at the right time. However, it may be true that repetition helps, much like giving allergy injections to build up immunity.

My fears began to subside a little. I mean I didn't feel like I was going i...

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The Power of Compassion

Sympathy looks in and says, "I'm sorry.” Compassion goes in and says, "I’m with you.“

Sympathy look in and says, "I would like to help." Compassion goes in and says, "I am here to help."

Sympathy says, "I wish I could carry your burden." Compassion says "Cast your burden on me."

Sympathy often irritates with many words. Compassion helps and hears in quietness and understanding.

-Author Unknown

Empathy refers to feeling what another person is feeling. Sympathy means you understand what the ...

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How Sports Teach Young People To Never Give up

It was the last 45 seconds of the game, and the basketball had been pushed into her hands. For a second, she stood there numb, bouncing the ball on the polished hardwood floor. The seconds ticked by until she was jerked into action by the shouting on the sideline. “Throw it, throw the ball!”

A tall guard loomed in front of her face. She moved to her right side, glanced at the round metal ring with the basket below, closed her eyes, and threw the ball toward the goal as hard as she could.

Relieved that the discarded ...

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Slowing Down and Paying Attention

“Doodlebug, doodlebug, come out tonight, doodlebug, doodlebug, your house is on fire.” The little chant still echoes in my head when I see a familiar cone-shaped track spiraling downward into the soft, warm sand.

My brother and I sang this tune over and over while we lured these short, hairy insects from their homes in the warm Georgia sand when we were children, using only a straw or a small stick. We placed the stick in the middle of the soft cone-like entrance to their pits and wiggled it around.

After a while, a...

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How to Deal With Telemarketers

I am not always friendly to telemarketers. I am ashamed to say that occasionally, I have slammed the phone down and been rather short-tempered about the times they call my house. However, all that changed a few years ago when I decided it was time to reclaim control of my telephone calls.

Like most people, we receive so many annoying telemarketing calls each day–for credit card offers, vacation packages, pledges to various charities and insurance companies–that I spend a good part of my evenings complaining about those irr...

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Children Remember so Much

One weekend I traveled to Tennessee to visit our grandchildren without my husband, who was not able to get off work. Alex, our oldest, and I went to the grocery store together to pick up something for lunch.

We were getting ready to get out of the car when he said, “Nana, are you and Papa sorry?” Startled, I said, “Sorry for what, Alex?” “Sorry for taking my Grinch toys away from me,” he said. “What Grinch toys,” I asked him. I couldn’t remember that he had any Grinch toys. “...

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Happiness is How We Treat Our Families

Think for a moment how we treat our friends. We laugh with them, share good times, listen to them, and always try to be fair. We comfort them when things are going bad, and we would never interrupt them or allow ourselves to be distracted while they are talking to us. In the workplace, we treat our coworkers with respect and would not dare tell them to shut up or accept a kind gesture without saying thank you.

But how do we treat our spouses and children when we get home out of the view of people who admire us?

Last week I went...

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