Short Stories

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

Reacting Without Thinking

He was just a man sitting in a crowd watching a baseball game. His face and clothes blended in with all the other faces in the crowd at the Wrigley Field baseball stadium. The Chicago Cubs were holding a 3-0 lead in the eighth inning of Game 6 of the National League Championship Series, and suddenly the ball was hit to the left-field directly in the path of the man sitting in the front row.

Without hesitation or thought, he stood up and reached his left hand out and literally caught the ball inches above the hands of the Chicago Cubs ...

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Making Room For the Important Things

Recently I heard a beautiful song called “Is There Room.” It made me think of a time when we were invited to a friend’s home in south Texas to share in their family’s Christmas Posada.

Posada is the Spanish word for “inn,” and the Posadas Navideñas recalls the events leading up to the Nativity of Jesus. Las Posadas is a nine-day religious festival celebrated throughout Mexico. It begins on December 16 and ends on Christmas Eve.

It is a way Christian families commemorate Joseph and Mary’...

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Happy Meal Toys

Before the holidays began, I spoke with my 5-year-old grandson on the telephone.  He and his two little brothers lived in Knoxville, Tenn.  I told him we would meet him in Washington, D.C., at his aunt’s house for the Thanksgiving holidays.

He was so excited about being able to see us.  He said, “Oh, Nana, will you be bringing me “Happy Meal” toys?” It seems that I had become the grandparent who gives him the little things in life.

When our youngest son was little, his favorite toys were happy mea...

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The Fireworks In A Veteran’s Mind

We were hypnotized by what seemed like millions of colors drizzling down into the reflection of the lake. Our daughter said it looked like a box of Crayola crayons shot out of a cannon into the sky. The crowd around us applauded the Veterans Day extravagant fireworks display paired with a musical salute to our nation’s veterans as the town lit up around us.

We hurried with our two children to get the best spot near the lake. We were lying on our backs on a thick plaid blanket I brought to keep us dry and comfortable. Our...

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Under The Same Sky

Our daughter, Christy, said she stood on a pier looking into the Black Sea. “I understood that if I wanted to feel those waters, I should jump in at that moment. I knew the odds were I’d never get another chance. So I jumped in the freezing water with my clothes on and swam in the Black Sea.”

The Black Sea is near where Russia recently bombed the Odessa Opera house in Ukraine.

In 1994, she and seven other students from a Christian University in the U.S. volunteered to go to the National University in Poltava, ...

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Feeling Safe As A Family

At 4:am, my head finally sank into the overly soft pillow in the attic bedroom.  I had been waiting all night for the last child to arrive for the Thanksgiving holidays at the cabin we rented in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

I was thankful indeed, as I lay completely peaceful, knowing that once again, all of our children were under one roof.  If I listened intently, I could almost hear each of them breathe, though they were sleeping on different levels of the three-story cabin that we found nestled in the Tennessee Mountains, surro...

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Crying Child

Being in a plane with a child screaming to the top of their lungs is hard on the parents and those around them. “She’s just throwing a tantrum, said the man sitting near me.  It’s her mother’s fault.” He said it loud enough for the young mother to hear the comment, too.

The little girl making all the noise was about 18 months old, and no amount of consoling from her frazzled mother would soothe her.

I was flying home from a conference in Atlanta and feeling really sorry for the young woman trying t...

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Embarrassing the Kids

When our children were teenagers, one of the things they hated most was when I used coupons to buy groceries or when I would count out change from my purse instead of handing over dollar bills or a credit card.

Little things embarrassed them, like when I cut a coupon from the newspaper for a bucket of chicken. I stopped at the intercom of the fast-food drive-in sign and ordered the fried chicken but failed to tell them I had a coupon.

When I drove up to the window, I showed them my discount coupon, but they said they couldnR...

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Separation Anxiety Not Just Kids Stuff

Our youngest child suffered severe separation anxiety going into kindergarten. It is a disorder in which a child becomes excessively anxious when separated from parents.

I tried to assure him that he would make friends and learn many new things. That didn’t impress him, so I told him, “Well, we’ll just take it one day at a time.”

He misunderstood and interpreted the one day at a time as he only had to go one day, and if he didn’t like it, he didn’t have to go back.

The next day I met h...

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Children Do As They See

The older man was small and stooped over.  His steps were careful as he carried his tray to the restaurant table where I was having dinner. I could see relief in his face and muscles as he reached his destination, set his load down, and eased his weak body into a chair. The woman sitting down beside him was his daughter.

When the man had difficulty cutting his meat, she very patiently took the knife from his hand and cut the large portion into small pieces, perhaps the same way he did for her when she was a child. It is always very to...

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Sarcasm Can Leave Emotional Scars

When my friend walked by my desk looking sharp in her stylish, black suit, I remarked how great she looked. She said she had just come out of a senior management meeting. “Is that your senior management suit?” I asked. We laughed, and she would say something funny to me about my casual dress.

We were a little sarcastic, and it was funny. It lightened up our day because we were friends and wouldn’t do anything to hurt each other.

But there are times when sarcasm hurts. Even the word itself can leave a b...

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Barefoot Summer

Our bare feet grew tough, our hair turned to gold, and our bodies browned and freckled in the sun that pursued us on long hot summer days.

Across the dirt road where we lived, there was an old abandoned building. Bushes, high grass, and broken tree limbs hid it from the road, but we found it and made it our secret clubhouse.

We swept the dust from one side of the room to the other and put a cardboard box in the middle of the vast open space for a table and cement blocks around for chairs.

We hid our peanut butter and cra...

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Blinders

The day was perfect. The soft snow highlighted everything beautiful in the Denver, Colorado, area. There was still some colorful fall leaves swaying in the cold, and seeing it all while riding in a lovely horse-drawn carriage was breathtaking!

I always feel bad for the horses, though, because they have to wear blinders. But, I know they are necessary to help the horse focus and stay on course.

The blinders, made of leather flaps, are also used on-farm horses and mules to pull plows or wagons. By limiting the peripheral vision, ...

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