Potential Possibilities

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#553: “Potential Possibilities”
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1 Timothy 4:14

14Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through a prophetic message when the body of elders laid their hands on you.

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Potential Possibilities

“Potential Possibilities” is episode #553 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by Marshal Younger and Nathan Hoobler (among others), and originally aired on November 6, 2004.


When Trent is put in the gifted class at school, he wonders if he'll survive his first week. Meanwhile, Aubrey Shepard learns that she has a real talent with horses.


Trent has been placed in the gifted class and fears he will never again see daylight — or even normal people. On his first day in the class, one of the kids, Aaron, begins to grill him with questions — from the Greek Alphabet to reciting digits of pi. He is sure that his life as he knows it will end!

Meanwhile, Aubrey is teaching Marvin how to ride a horse, until a nearby tractor backfires and Marvin’s horse takes off! Aubrey’s daring rescue causes Mr. Riley to see her potential as a show rider.

Meanwhile, Trent dreams up different ways to get out of the gifted class (or, as he calls it, the "roach trap"), all of them involving feigning unintelligence in order to appear like a student who did not belong in the class. He starts by deliberately telling Mrs. Nietchew that he thinks Afghanistan is a kind of sweater, does an oral report on mustard, and eventually decides to try drastic measures — making his team lose the coveted Academic Olympics championship against Connellsville!

As Mr. Riley talks to Aubrey, she learns that he and his friend Andrew Kiley once had a shot at being famous Vaudeville performers! He gave up his gift, however, and still regrets it. But then he was reminded of his unwillingness to take a chance with his dream when he saw what Andrew had made of himself as a television personality, because he took the opportunity in front of him. Tom knows that if Aubrey doesn’t act upon her gifts when she has the opportunity, she will never get around to it. She thinks that Tom should still try his Vaudeville routine, so she makes a deal with him that if he auditions his comedy routine at a local restaurant, she will enter the horse show. Tom lives up to his end of the bargain, and Aubrey prepares to compete in the show just before Rachel injures her joint on accident. Aubrey decides to compete in all parts of the show except for the jumping section, because Rachel's safety is more important. A nearby horsewoman takes notice of this and decides to retire three of her show horses to the Timothy Center for Aubrey to take care of. Now the Timothy Center can have trail rides!

After being given permission to get out of the gifted class (and being honest with Mrs. Nietchew about why he doesn't want to be there), Trent helps the team win the competition against Connellsville by answering a key question. On the bus ride to Whit's End for celebratory ice cream, he is able to get to know Aaron, who warmed up to him when he helped them win the competition. Trent learns, a bit too late, that they actually have more in common than he thought (both of them want to work in the space program), and that the gifted class could give him opportunities he wouldn't have normally had. Aaron tells him excitedly that the gifted class is a ticket to anything they want to be. "Great," Trent mumbles despondently, "glad to hear it."

Discussion Questions

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Heard in episode

Role Voice Actor
Aaron Matthew Fahey
Aubrey Shepard Danielle Judovits
Marvin Washington Kendre Berry
Mrs. Nietchew Shari Belgeau
Tom Riley Walker Edmiston
Trent DeWhite Corey Padnos
Ashley Jenkins Brice Keltner

Mentioned in episode

Character Mentioned By
Ben Shepard Tom Riley
Elaine Washington Marvin Washington
Stephen DeWhite Mrs. Nietchew
Mrs. DeWhite Mrs. Nietchew
Ellen Shepard Tom Riley




Mrs. Nietchew: Trent, name the first man-made object to touch the moon.
Trent DeWhite: The first man-made object? Uh... Neil Armstrong's shoe?

Tom Riley: I could train you and you're a fast learner. I should talk to your parents about this and see what they think.
Aubrey Shepard: Thanks, Mr. Riley, but I don't need any more opportunities to look ridiculous. I appreciate it, though. I'll see you tomorrow!
Tom Riley: We're not through talking about this! Not by a long shot.

Trent DeWhite: Mustard is what's called a "condiment." You find mustard in supermarkets in the mustard aisle, and sometimes you find it on hamburgers. Mustard is yellow, except when it's brown. Here, I have a bottle of each!

Marvin Washington: Look! The pizza's almost gone. And if that goes, the only option is that mystery casserole the lunch lady cooked up.
Trent DeWhite: This isn't the time to complain about trivial matters! I need to think of a way to get out of the gifted class!
Marvin Washington: How about you stop using phrases like "trivial matters?"