Same Family, Different Beliefs

Written in response to: Write a story about a couple with fundamentally different beliefs.... view prompt

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African American Christian Creative Nonfiction

As the sun rises on a beautiful Sunday morning, Husband and Wife Nora and Michael Robinson are in bed discussing their differences when it comes to their beliefs. Nora lays across her husband's chest as she explains to him how they should start going to church more often on Sundays.

"I think that it would be good for our children to learn about God like I did when I was their age."

Michael clears his throat as he partially listens to his wife go on and on about church.

"Michael, are you hearing me?"

Michael sits up on the bed and says to his wife "Yes, I am hearing you but only partially,

Nora sits up with a frown across her face.

"What do you mean you are only hearing me partially?"

"I told you, Nora, I was raised differently than your family. My family believed in God but we also didn't need to go to church to prove that we did."

"It's not about proving a point! It's all about showing our appreciation to the lord."

"Isn't that the same thing as proving?"

Michael gets up from the bed and goes into the bathroom that is connected to their bedroom to brush his teeth. Nora follows behind him to finish the argument that is almost at its breaking point.

"No, Michael it is not the same thing."

"Look, it's a beautiful day let's not waste this day arguing about our different beliefs."

Nora crosses her arms as she stares at her husband brushing his teeth in the mirror.

"Look, Michael, I do not mean to make such a fuss about this but it's something that I grew up doing. It has been 2 years since I've been in a church and my family is giving me a hard time because of it."

Michael grabs the towel that is near the mirror and dries his face with it. "I understand."

Nora's eyes light up "You do? so, are we going to church?"

"I didn't say anything about that."

Later on that day, Nora receives a visit from her older sister Jane. As Michael plays outside with the kids, Jane sparks up a conversation about Nora's absence from the church as they both stand in the kitchen. Nora listens to her sister as she cuts up peppers and onions for the stew that she is making for Sunday dinner.

"Everybody at our family church has been asking about you. When will you visit?"

"No time soon, Michael won't agree to go."

Jane kisses the cross necklace that is around her neck.

"How come he won't agree?"

"His family wasn't the church type so he isn't."

"That is no excuse not to go to church he is a grown man he can make his own decisions now."

"I explained to him that I grew up in the church and I want my children to learn about God just like I did when I was their age. I loved church as a child and I want my children to love it as well."


"But, I want Michael and me to be on the same page."

"Nora, it has been 2 years since you stepped foot into our family church do you know how mama and daddy feel about that?"

"Crushed I would say."

"Yes, their hearts are shattered. They want to see you in church every Sunday."

"Well, I tried calling mama and daddy a few times, and no response so I don't know what else to do."

"Come to church and then you'll receive an answer from them"

Nora places the knife down next to the cutting board that has chopped up peppers and onions laying across it.

"I'll talk with Michael tonight again and I'll see where it goes from there."

"Good, and you want to know something else?"

"Sure, Jane what could it be?"

"Last weekend when the kids spent the night at Mama and Daddy's house they did not say grace before eating supper. Mama almost had a heart attack! That should be a good enough reason to get back in the church."

"They probably forgot you know they are children!"

"Yes, they are children but that is why children should be in church. Going to church every Sunday will refresh their little immature minds to say grace before eating the food that God has blessed them with."

Nora stirs the pot of beef stew that is bubbling on the stove.

"Like I said I'll talk to Michael some more tonight in bed."

"Well, I would love to stay longer and talk about the lord some more but I have to go."

Nora kisses her sister goodbye and began to set the table for dinner.

After dinner, Michael and Nora tucked the children in bed and then headed downstairs to have a drink before bed.

Nora grabs Michael's hand and looked into his brown eyes.

"I know that the discussion about church has been a hard pill to swallow but thank you for listening to me even if it was partially."

"Nora, I don't mean to hurt your feelings but I just think going to church every Sunday is ridiculous. Our children do not need to go to church every day to prove that they love God. We can teach our children at home about God."

"Michael, those who go to church on Sundays go to heaven when they leave this earth."

"That is not true. Nora, the church brainwashed you into thinking that way. All of God's children go to Heaven, not just those that attend church on Sundays."

"Listen, I am taking our children to church next Sunday. You either come along or you will be left."

Nora finishes drinking the leftover whiskey that is in her glass and removes herself from the conversation and the table.

It is Sunday morning, Nora gathers her two children out the door as the three of them make their way to Nora's car. Michael lays awake alone in bed refusing to go with his family to church. As Nora closes the car door she stares at the front door of her home hoping to see Michael come through but his body never made it to the front door. Nora sadly turned her head and drove away from their home.

When Nora and her two children made it to the family church her parents greeted the kids but Nora. Nora asked her mother if she could speak to her for just a few minutes. Nora's mother nods her head agreeing to talk to her daughter.

"Mama, I know that you are disappointed in me and I understand but there's an explanation for my absence."

"How could you possibly explain 2 years of absence?"

"Mama, don't be bitter I am trying here."

"I know and I am glad that you decided to join us this Sunday. Save your explanation all that matters is you are here now. I assume Michael didn't agree to come along?"

"No, it wasn't that he's just not feeling too well. Next time he'll be here with us."

"Don't lie in the house of the lord."

"Mama, we should go service is about to start."

Nora and her mother join their family in the pew.

February 06, 2022 19:52

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