“Anna, what are you doing sitting there crying?” asked Anna’s mother, Mrs. Johnson.
“Sniff… sniff… sniff.”
“That is not an answer.”
“Susan… sniff, sniff… she hit me.” Anna replied
“Why did she do that?”
“Because I said that we should help and give to the people that have a need, and she, well Mother, I do not mean to talk bad, but she is very selfish. She tries to save up a whole lot of money just to spend on everything that she wants. But Mother, isn’t there a verse that talks about saving up treasures here on the earth?”
“Yes, there is.” her mother replied. “Why don’t you run and get your bible, and I will help you find the spot.”
A couple of minutes later Anna came back with her bible in hand.
“Now let me see it really fast,” her mother said. “Oh here it is… Matthew chapter 6, verse 19 through 20. Read it Anna.”
“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: Matthew 6:19-20”
“From what you tell me, Susan is a very selfish girl.” Mrs. Johnson spoke thoughtfully. “Part of me thinks that you both should not be friends anymore, because I do not want my little girl selfish. The other part of me thinks that you should continue being friends, to help her become unselfish. I will talk to your father and see what he says. But Anna, whatever Father says, you still know that you have to forgive Susan for hitting you.”
“Yes, I know, Mother.”
Now reader, I will now give you some of Anna’s and Susan’s background. Anna is 12 years old and is the only child of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson. The Johnson’s lived on a small piece of land close to Susan’s house. Susan was also 12 years old, but her mother died when she was only 5 years old. Since the age of 5 years old, both girls had be close friends. But now, what would happen?
The next day, Mrs. Johnson came to Anna’s room and said, “I talked to your father about Susan. Father and I prayed about it and we feel at peace with letting you continue to be friends. We feel that you will be a witness to her and that she will become very generous after a little while. But I am going to warn you to not be influenced by her.” “Thank you, mother. I will try my very best.” Anna replied.
Since Susan had no mother, she would come over to the Johnson’s home, and Mrs. Johnson would teach her school along with Anna. That day she came over as she always did, but they did not talk about her hitting Anna. That night when Mr. Johnson came home from work he said, “Anna, your mother and I felt like we need to send some money to the Hoovers… do you have any money that you think you should give, and can you make me an envelope?”
“Yes I have some money I want to send, and yes I can make you an envelope.” Anna told him.
“When do you think that you could have the envelope done by?” Mr. Johnson asked.
“That is good.”
“Father,” Anna began, “can I ask Susan if she would like to give any money to the Hoovers? I do not think that she will, but I would like to anyhow.”
“Yes, you may.” her father told her.
The next morning Anna had a fever, so she did not make the envelope, and the money did not get sent. Susan came over, and she went to see Anna.
“Susan, we have some friends that need some money, so we are sending them some money. Would you like to put some money in with us?” Anna asked.
“Why, no! If they need money, they should work for it.” Susan responded, and Anna did not reply.
Reader, you may be wondering why everything happened as it did, but do not think that for one minute our Heavenly Father did not know what He was doing. Now let’s see what happens.
The mail always came at 8:00am. At 8:10 Anna was totally well! After Susan said that she was not going to help the Hoovers, her heart was not happy at all. She felt very bad inside.
That night, she felt so bad that she could not sleep. She went and woke up her father and said, “Daddy, I need you to take me over to the Johnson’s.”
“Why?” he asked.
“Because I am suppose to give money to their friends the Hoover’s, but I said ‘no’ and I have felt bad ever since. I need to get it all right.”
“OK, but don’t you think it is kind of late?”
“Yes, but I need to go anyhow.” Susan replied.
So, they both got dressed and Susan got her purse. They went over to the Johnson’s. The Johnson’s were so glad that Susan had come. Susan did not only give them the money, but she gave Anna a hug and said, “I am so sorry that I hit you, from now on I want to be kind and generous to people”, and Anna was so happy.
Reader, I can not say how much money Susan gave, but I can say that when Susan came, her wallet was quite thick, but when she left… it was quite thin. As Susan and her father were leaving, Anna said, “I know now why I was sick yesterday for such a short time. He made me sick so that it would delay us sending the money so that He could put it on Susan’s heart to be generous! I am so happy now.” “We are too,” said Mr. Johnson.