Today we have Linda Widrick to tell us the reason she wrote the novella, To Complicate Matters, part of the Ponder This… series.

Hello, Linda. Why did you write this particular story?

When I was approached with the opportunity to write a novella for the Ponder This series, I jumped at the chance. The specific topic “Whatever is Just” from Philippians 4:8 sounded intriguing to me. Seat-of-the-pants-writer that I am, this verse was really all I had to go on.

Shortly after I agreed, I ran into one of my nieces who has a particularly sweet, spunky, and compelling sense of humor. All that, plus, she’s an amazing baker, she’s single, and she’s drop-dead gorgeous. For whatever reason, I thought about those old analog answering machines that most of us had growing up. Then I wondered what would happen if she mistakenly left a voice message on someone’s answering machine with a very-telling message. I opened a new Word document, and Angelica’s story unfolded.

Ironically enough, while I was writing the scene where Angelica discovers what she had done, a similar thing happened to me: I left a wrong message on someone’s phone. Immediately, I buried my phone deep under the pillows of the sofa while my eyes and mouth were wide open saucers as I clamped my hand over my mouth. I couldn’t believe this was happening. I experienced all the feels: mortification, constant replay, over-analysis, panic, and worry. Eventually, I got over it with a whole lot of grace. That event helped me interject some real-life experience into the scene.

God’s grace sure is amazing. He catches us when we fall, and he sets us up on high, even when we would not otherwise deserve it. He is faithful, and He is just. He forgives us, and we can live free.

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