Eric and Terrible Tommy

As Eric walked along the sidewalk, he thought about his favorite show.  He kicked a wad of paper lying at the edge of the walk. He kicked it with all the anger he felt inside. Tears filled his blue eyes, and he rubbed at his sunburned nose.

“Why do I have to go to the store,” he grumbled.  “I don’t think it’s fair. I wanted to watch my show.  Today Terrible Tommy, the space machine will catch those two aliens from the planet Orb.  I wanted to see him capture them.”
He heard a noise and glanced up.  He realized he was near Richard’s house.  He saw Richard going inside.

Eric quickened his steps and called to Richard, “Hey Richard! Wait up.”

“Well hurry! Richard called back.  “It’s time for Terrible Tommy, the space machine, and today I think he will catch those guys from Orb.”

“I know, and I’m going to miss it!”  Eric hurried up the driveway. “Mom made me go to the store for eggs and sugar.”

“Come on in,” Richard invited.  “The show’s starting and I don’t want to miss any of it.”

“Okay, but I can’t stay.  Mom told me to hurry back.”  Eric joined Richard and the two boys walked inside.

“Wow! Did you see that?” Richard exclaimed. “Terrible Tommy is sure brae and smart too.”

“Yeah,” Eric agreed as he leaned forward in his chair, his eyes focused on the TV.  No thought of eggs and sugar entered his mind until the show ended and the announcer came on to tell about next week’s show.  Eric sprang to his feet.

“Man, I’ve got to go!  I’ll see you later. Mom’s gonna kill me.”  He dashed out the door and ran to the store for the eggs and sugar.  He hurried home and entered the kitchen through the back door. He hoped he could put the groceries on the cabinet and go back outside without anyone even knowing he was late.
His mom was taking cupcakes from the oven.  She glanced up, “I see you finally made it back,” she said.

Eric ducked his head. “I’m sorry, Mom, I stopped off at Richard’s house.  I didn’t mean to stay so long. Here’s the things you wanted.”

“You took so long I went next door and borrowed sugar and eggs from Mrs. Cox.  I couldn’t wait any longer. I had to have these cupcakes ready for the bake sale when Mrs. Hendrix comes for them.  That’s the reason I asked you to hurry. The money from the sale is for the family down the street that lost their father last week.  I didn’t realize I couldn’t depend on you to do as you’re instructed. Even an eight-year old should be able to follow instructions.  I called Richard’s mother, and she told me you were there.”

Eric felt the tears welling up in his eyes. “I’m sorry, Mom, I really am.  I forgot about time when I went into Richard’s house. But from now on I’ll keep my mind on what I’m supposed to be doing and not on my show.”

“I know you’re sorry that you were caught disobeying, but are you sorry you disobeyed? You should think about that.  I hope that next time you’ll keep your mind on what you’re doing, but I still think you need something to help you remember.  Next week when the Terrible Tommy show comes on, you will not be allowed to watch it. Instead, you will go with me to help out at a yard sale at Mrs. Johnson.  She wants to use the money from the yard sale to buy Bibles for our Children’s Church.”

Eric knew he had upset his mother. He was relieved that he hadn’t messed up the bake sale. “I can help with the boxes and bags and stuff like that,” he said.  “I’d still like to see my show, but Richard can tell me the good stuff that happens. How many Bibles are we going to buy?”

His mom laughed.  I hope we make a lot of money so we can buy many Bibles.  If there’s too many for the Children’s Church we can always find places where Bibles are needed.

Later, Eric lay in bed thinking about helping with the yard sale. He yawned, that could be fun. You find all kinds of stuff at yard sales. He closed his eyes and fell asleep thinking about giving Bibles to kids.

MEMORY VERSE: “Blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it,” Luke 11:28.