Every Friday, Lisa-Jo Baker, founder of “Five Minute Friday,” broadcasts a writing prompt, challenging writers to writer for five minutes only. In her words, “It’s not a perfect post, not a profound post, just five minutes of focused writing. “

This is a great writing exercise even if you’re not blogging your treasures (memories). Your spontaneous thoughts on a given subject can reveal your personality, daily life, beliefs, etc. If you are blogging, I encourage you to join in! If you want to connect on Twitter, use the hashtag #FiveMinuteFriday.

Today’s prompt:Listen

Listen. Listen to their stories

This beautiful young man is gone. It seems wrong that so few seem to know—that he left this world with so little fanfare.

His life was purely tangential to mine. Two years older than my son, they played on the same high school soccer team for a year, and then Jake moved to another high school

I didn’t know him well. No parents ever came to watch him play, so I wondered about his situation. At pasta dinners, I made sure he was well fed. He was polite, appreciative, and generous with his smile.

His obituary lists no parents as survivors. Did he suffer the loss of both of his parents or an estrangement?

Did I miss the news that he was sick? The kids—the soccer crowd—are shocked by his death. They didn’t know either. In my mind, Jake (#24) was doing what all the 2010 high school graduates were doing…going to college, meeting girls, working, and planning their lives.

Did I fail to listen? Did we all ? Did his loved ones fail to talk, to request prayers?  Did he get a chance to tell his story.

I want to re-negotiate this outcome with God. Surely, this wasn’t the plan for Jake’s life.

Instead, I pray:

God, please listen. Please enfold Jake in your arms, grant him all the wishes that he didn’t get in life. Make sure he knows he’ll be missed. Make sure he knows the other boys care. Enjoy his smile.

Five Minute Friday


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