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Purity Girls
Purity 101

Jesus Only
(The following story was submitted by Purity Girl and teen writer, Olivia McLeod.)



Chapter Three

     Carol had a lot on her mind as she walked to school Friday morning. Just the night before, she had broken the news to her parents that she had failed her Health test that day. Despite their evident disappointment, all they said was, "Can you do better next time?" This response surprised Carol. They would normally overreact, starting by grounding Carol and ending the night in a shouting match when Carol responded defensively.
     But, last night, they didn't seem to panic. It was like this new faith gave them the strength to handle things outside of their control. Things like this were slight changes that Carol had been noticing in her parents. Sometimes she wondered what made them so happy.
     Of course, Carol hadn't been feeling too on edge the last couple of weeks, either. In fact, even Joanne noticed a slight change in her. Carol never told her about the CD stashed away in her sock drawer, but Joanne seemed to sense that Carol wasn't telling her something, and asked if she had gotten religious and that was why she was acting differently around her. "Oh no!" Carol told her, but in her heart she sensed that she was close.
     All throughout school Carol rehearsed how she was going to ask her parents about going to church with them and how she could break it to Joanne that she'd be busy Sunday and therefore couldn't go out shopping with her. She was so distracted that she burned her sugar cookies in Home-Ec and ran the wrong way playing baseball in Gym class.
     Carol breathed a sigh of relief as the bell rang, gathered up her books and exited the classroom. She was rehearsing her speech in her head once more when she heard Melody, the new girl in school, call her from behind.
     "Hey Carol, can I ask you something?"
     "Yeah, sure." Carol slowed her pace to allow her new friend catch up her. "What's up?"
     "Well, I was just wondering if you would like to come with me to a youth activity tomorrow night."
     "That should be fine. Is it a place my mom would know of?"
     "Actually, yeah. You see it's …uh…well…" She shifted her books nervously. "Your parents and my parents both go to the same church, so yeah, she knows where it is."
     "So it's at your church." Carol assumed.
     "Uh-huh," Melody confirmed.
     Carol considered it a rather amazing coincidence


that on the same exact day she'd been thawing to the whole "church" thing, a friend had suddenly popped up to invite her to a church service. Still, Carol hesitated. "Is there going to be one of those preaching messages?"
     Melody nodded shyly.
     Carol was almost surprised to hear herself ask, "What time should I be there?"
     Melody's nervousness suddenly melted, and Carol realized that her friend had been rather afraid to invite her. "It starts at seven, so ten 'til would be a good time to get there."
     "I'll be there." Carol said as she reached her locker.
     "Great! See you then!" Melody waved as she departed.
     Just then Joanne came up behind Carol and snickered. "What did she want from you?"
     Carol slung her book bag over her shoulder and shut her locker. "Nothing significant. Just wanted to say hi." She lied.
     "Yeah, right. Anyway, I have something to tell you."
     "Talk as we walk." Carol motioned for Joanne to keep up with her.
     "I have to cancel our shopping trip for Sunday. My mom has been having too much pain, so I'm going to stay home and keep an eye on her. Her doctor has scheduled some tests to see if there is a problem with the baby that didn't show up on the ultrasound. Mom's on bed rest for now, but if the tests show that the pregnancy is at risk, the doctor may have to perform an early C-section." Joanne said gloomily. "Mom says the baby would be ok but would have to stay in the preemie ward at the hospital, possibly even for a month or more. She wants me not to worry, I can tell, but then I wonder if she may be hiding some of the truth from me."
     "Oh Joanne, I'm so sorry! Tell her I'll…tell her I said, "Hi." Carol caught herself almost saying she'd pray for Joanne's mom. What was she thinking? She didn't pray. She wouldn't even know how to start.
     "Will do. Well, see you tomorrow. I've got tennis practice."
     "Ok. See ya!" Carol called after her friend and watched her jog off. So, there it was. She hadn't had to cancel her Sunday plans with Joanne because Joanne had cancelled them for her. If there was a God, and Carol was beginning to think that there was, He was definitely using His powers to gang up on her in a very unfair way. As she turned and headed for home, all she could think of was how she was going to hate to admit to her parents that they might be right about this church thing that was weighing on her heart so.

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