A Four-Year-Old’s Prayer

Hide Footnotes


“A Four-Year-Old’s Prayer,” Ensign, June 1988, 49

A Four-Year-Old’s Prayer

“Brian!” I called. “Where is the calculator you were playing with? I’m ready to use it now.”

Report cards were due out tomorrow, and I was running late. I still had the scores to tally for three subjects, and then I needed to transcribe grades to the cards.

“Brian!” my voice was rising. “I need the calculator now!

Brian ran into the bedroom, where I sat surrounded by a pile of papers. I could tell he had recognized my “I’m-on-the-verge-of-losing-my-temper” voice. He seemed smaller than his usual four-year-old self as he said, “I’ve lost it, Mom.”

We searched the house for the calculator, looking everywhere—under beds, in drawers, in bookcases. We even emptied the clothes hamper.

I finally sent Brian to bed with a curt “I guess I’ll have to find it myself.” I couldn’t look at him as I left the room.

I searched for twenty minutes more with no results. I was beginning to panic. It was too late to go to the store to buy another calculator, and I knew I would be up all night if I had to add the scores on paper. I began to cry and decided I needed to pray, but I couldn’t bring myself to talk to our Father in Heaven until I had talked to my son.

Humbly, I entered Brian’s room and sat down beside him on the bed.

“Brian, I’m sorry,” I faltered, awkwardly. “I know you didn’t mean to lose the calculator. I think we need Heavenly Father’s help to find it.”

Tears came as Brian said he was sorry. Together we knelt and he offered a prayer. He told Heavenly Father that he was sorry he had lost the calculator and that I really needed it. Would Heavenly Father please help him remember where he had left it?

I said a silent prayer of my own, hoping I could match my son’s faith.

After we had finished praying, Brian sat on my lap and we talked about where he had last played. Suddenly, in my mind’s eye, I saw the calculator under the bathroom rug. At the same time, Brian said he thought he remembered playing in the bathroom. I suggested he go check there again. He walked straight to the rug and found the calculator.

With eyes shining, he handed the calculator to me. We hugged each other, rejoicing.

Illustrated by Steve Kropp