Fred and his friends were spending an afternoon together and, as young boys often think when they get together, they were trying to think of something fun and exciting to do.
They were thinking of various different activities. Being winter, they came up with ideas such as ice-skating, or sledding, however, sometimes young boys like to get into mischief thinking this is fun.
“Now, boys, I’ll tell you how we can really have some great fun,” said Fred to his companions, who had assembled on a beautiful cold and sunny afternoon.
“How?” “Where?” “What is it?” asked several eager voices together.
“I heard Widow More tell a man a little while ago,” replied Fred, “that she would go to sit up with a sick child tonight. She said she would be there about eight o’clock in the evening and would spend the night there. Now, as soon as she is gone, let’s make a big snow man on her doorstep so that when she comes home, she cannot get in without first knocking him down.”
“Splendid idea!” shouted several of the boys.
“See here,” said Charlie, “I’ll tell you something that will be even more fun.”
“What is it?” again inquired several at once.
“Wait for awhile and I will tell you,” said Charlie. “Who has a wood saw?”
“I have,” “So have I,” answered three of the boys. “But what in the world do you want a wood saw for? We can’t build a snow man with a saw.”
“You shall see,” replied Charlie. “It is almost eight o’clock now, so go and get your saws and come back as quickly as you can. You, Fred and Nathan, get each an axe, and I will get a shovel. Let us all be back here in fifteen minutes, and then I’ll show you the fun.”
The boys separated to go on their several errands, each wondering what the fun could be, and what possible use could be made of wood saws and axes, in their play. But Charlie was a good strong young man and their acknowledged leader. They fully believed in him and his promise of having fun.
Anxious to know what the “fun” was which Charlie had for them, they hurried back, and were soon ready, with their saws, axes, and shovels.
“Now,” said Charlie, “Mrs. More is gone, for I met her when I was coming back; so let’s begin at once.”
“But what are you going to do?” inquired several impatient members of the party.
“You shall see shortly,” replied the leader, as they approached the humble home of Mrs. More.
“Now boys,” said Charlie, “you see that pile of wood; a man hauled it here this afternoon, and I heard Mrs. More tell him that unless she got someone to saw it tonight, she would have nothing to make a fire with in the morning. Now, we can saw and split that pile of wood just about as easy as we could build a great snow man, and when Mrs. More comes home from her tending to the sick child, she will be fully as much surprised to find her wood cut, as she would to find a snow man at her doorstep, and a great deal more pleasantly surprised, too. What say you—will you do it?”
One or two of the boys were reluctant at first, but the majority, wanting to keep friendship with Charlie, began to help; so all finally joined in, and went to work eagerly.
“I’ll go round to the back of the shed,” said Charlie, “and crawl through the window and unfasten the door. Then we’ll take turns in sawing, splitting, and carrying the wood into her house; and I want to pile it up nicely, and to shovel all the snow away from the door; and make a good wide path, too, from the door to the street: What fun it will be when she comes home and sees it.”
The boys began to appreciate the fun, for they felt that they were doing a good deed, and experienced the satisfaction which always results from well-doing.
It was not a long, wearisome job, for seven strong and healthy boys to saw, split, and pile up the poor widow’s half-cord of wood, and to shovel a good path.
When it was done, so great was their pleasure, that one of the boys, who objected to the work at first, proposed that they should go to a neighbouring carpenter’s shop, where plenty of shavings were available for anyone who wanted to carry them away, and each bring an armful so she would have some kindling wood. This they did, and afterward hurried home, all of them more than satisfied with the “fun” of the winter evening.
The next morning, when Mrs. More came home, weary from watching by the sick bed all night, and saw what was done, she was very much surprised. When she was told who had done it, by a neighbor, who had witnessed the kindly deed, her fervent prayer, “God bless the boys!” was, of itself, an abundant reward for their labours.
The best fun is always found in doing something that is kind and useful. If you doubt it in the least, just try it for yourselves, and you will be convinced.
We will not remain young forever. One day we all will be old like Widow More, or sick or in need. How would we then like to be treated?
“Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” Matthew 7:12
It will all come back to us one day. “With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. “ Matthew 7:2
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:7-10
“Christ is our example. He went about doing good. He lived to bless others. Love beautified and ennobled all His actions. We are not commanded to do to ourselves what we wish others to do unto us; we are to do unto others what we wish them to do to us under like circumstances. The measure we mete is always measured to us again. Pure love is simple in its operations, and is distinct from any other principle of action. . . . Love should be cherished and cultivated, for its influence is divine.” –Lift Him Up, p. 94
“I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out.” Job 26:16
Job went as far as to search for those who needed help. He did not just wait at home until he saw someone in need, but he went out looking.
The next time you have a little spare time, rather than just spend it on yourself, go out and have some real, genuine fun, by looking for someone who needs help and help them with all your heart. You will be surprised how happy you feel.
Even if you get no reward here on this earth, Jesus sees what you are doing. He says, “Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven.” Matthew 5:12
Your good deeds will be written in the book of remembrance and will remain there forever for everyone to read when they want to (Malachi 3:16).