I Can Help

By Rosie Smith

…People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. ~ 1 Samuel 16:7b NLT

Thomas jumped out of bed. The sun was starting to peak through the curtains, promising it to be a nice day. He could hear the clatter of plates in the kitchen as a pleasant smell wafted into his room. ‘Pancakes!’ Thomas thought with glee. He loved Sundays.

He joined his family in the kitchen as they prepared breakfast.

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“Hey buddy” Dad said, ruffling his hair. “Slept in today huh?”

“Or were you just trying to get out of your chores?” Teased his older brother Josh.

“Enough of that you two, time for breakfast!” Mum said, wiping her hands on a tea towel.

They took their places at the table and bowed their heads to say grace, then proceeded to pile up their plates with warm, fluffy pancakes.

“So, what are everyone’s plans today?” Dad asked.

“Me and Mikey were going to ride to the park soon to see if his money is still there. He thinks it fell out of his pocket yesterday.” Josh said.

“Can I come?” Thomas asked, “I can help find it!”

Josh shook his head. “Nah, you’re too little. You won’t be able to keep up with us!”

Thomas pouted. He knew it was true, but he wished it wasn’t. Even though he was five now and going to big school, he still couldn’t ride as fast as his eight year old brother.

“Well,” Mum said, changing the topic, “I’m going to make a cake today for Nanna’s birthday.”

“What kind?” Thomas asked with a mouthful of food.

“Hmm, I’m thinking a carrot cake” Mum replied, reaching for the strawberries. “She does love her carrot cake.”

After breakfast, Thomas watched sulkily as his brother wheeled his bike out of the garage next to Mikey’s.

“You can come next time, okay?” Said Josh. Thomas nodded and watched as they rode down the hill, waving goodbye. ‘I can’t wait till I’m bigger’ Thomas thought to himself. Just then he heard a noise behind him. It was Dad sliding under the car.

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“Whatcha doing Dad?” Thomas asked.

“Got to change the oil” Dad replied. “It’s well overdue.”

“Thomas lay down on his belly to have a look. His Dad had a spanner in one hand and seemed to be trying to loosen something with great effort.

“This…thing….is so….TIGHT!” Dad grunted.

“I can help!” Thomas said.

“Aw thanks bud” said Dad “but your muscles are a bit too small for this job. Why don’t you go play outside?” he suggested.

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“Ok…” Thomas sighed.

He walked out of the garage into the kitchen and saw Mum putting on her apron.

“What’s up honey?” Mum asked “You look a bit down”.

“Nothing” Thomas shrugged, then he saw the ingredients laid out on the bench. “Mum can I help you make Nanna’s cake?”

Mum hesitated, but seeing his hopeful face, she nodded her head. “Sure, you can help me”.

Thomas quickly washed his hands, then dragged a chair over to stand on.

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“Ok, so we need two cups of flour” Mum said, watching nervously as Thomas tried scooping up flour to pour into the bowl. Half of it made it in, but the other half landed on the bench.

“Never mind,” said Mum quickly, “we can clean it up later”. She poured in extra flour and some sugar then looked at the recipe.

“Ok give that a stir, then we’ll add the eggs and butter” she said, “Ah, I forgot to get the butter”.

As she turned to open the fridge, Thomas picked an egg out from the carton. He’d seen his mum crack plenty of eggs, surely it wasn’t that hard? Thomas banged the egg hard against the bench. The yolk splattered onto the floor, joining the pile of flour.

Mum turned around and gasped, “What are you doing?!”

Thomas looked down at the mess, “I…I was just adding the egg…” he stammered, “Sorry Mum”.

Mum took a deep breath. “It’s OK, I know it was an accident” she said, then added “maybe you’re still too little for cooking, how about you go play outside while I finish up?” “Ok” Thomas sighed as he slid off the chair. ‘Maybe I am too small to help’. He thought to himself. ‘I don’t seem to be good at anything!’

The next day Thomas was less enthusiastic about getting out of bed. He usually loved school, but today he just felt so small.

“Bye honey! Have a nice day!” Mum called as she dropped him off. Thomas waved, then slowly trudged to his classroom. The morning went fast with math rotations and journal writing. Before he knew it, the bell was ringing and everyone was rushing outside to recess. As Thomas sat eating lunch with his friends, he suddenly spotted a little boy sitting on his own next to the basketball courts. Thomas hadn’t seen him before and assumed he must be new.

“Let’s go play soccer!” One of his friends shouted, interrupting his train of thought.

“Yeah!” chorused the other boys. Thomas stood up to go, but then thought about that lonely boy again.

“I’ll come down soon!” Thomas yelled as his friends ran towards the oval. He walked over to the little boy.

“Hey” he said shyly.

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The boy looked up, surprised. “Hey” he replied.

“What’s your name?” Thomas said.

“Leo” said the boy.

“Are you new?” Thomas asked.

“Yeah. I didn’t want to come to school, but Mummy has to work. I’m in kindy.” The boy said, looking down at his shoelaces.

“Well, I’m Thomas anyway” Thomas said. “Want to play?”

“Really?” said Leo “I wanted to play basketball but those boys over there said I was too small.”

Thomas put his hands on his hips, suddenly feeling bigger than he’d ever felt before.

“Don’t worry about them,” he shrugged, “we can play our own game!”

Leo smiled and with that the two boys ran off to play.


That night, as Thomas was climbing into bed, his Mum came into the room with a big smile on her face.

“Thomas, I just got off the phone with your teacher,” she began, “she told me that she saw you at recess making friends with one of the new students who was struggling to fit in.”

“Oh Leo?” Thomas said, pulling up his blanket, “yeah he’s nice! We played basketball.”

“Thomas,” Mum said, tears welling up in her eyes, “I am so proud of you. I know sometimes you might feel small on the outside, but on the inside you have the biggest heart. And to God, that’s more important than anything else”. His mum leaned over and kissed him on the forehead. “Night buddy, sleep well” she said, turning out the light.

‘Maybe I am good at something,’ Thomas thought as he drifted off to sleep, ’it sure does feel good!’

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PICTURE CREDIT -Pexel Images Photo by Ash, Photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh, Photo by Malte Luk, Photo by olia danilevich, Photo by Marina Abrosimova: Photo by Victoria Borodinova:Photo by Jessica Lewis

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kids bedtime stories, christian bedtime stories,
kids bedtime stories, christian bedtime stories,
kids bedtime stories, christian bedtime stories,

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