“Helping Like Jesus,” Friend, Jan. 2012, 36–37
“I’m trying to be like Jesus; I’m following in his ways,” Ella sang as she hopped up the front steps and came in the door.
“Today in Primary we learned that we should be like Jesus,” Ella said to Mom. “I promised Sister Hansen I’d try to be like Jesus all week! I’m going to start right now.”
As the rest of her family came in, Ella told each of them her plan to be like Jesus. She smiled a giant smile.
Ella ran to her room and carefully hung her Sunday dress in the closet. She returned to the kitchen and helped carry the plates to the table.
The next morning, Ella got up as soon as Mom called her. She ate all her breakfast and didn’t complain, even though her scrambled eggs were too squishy.
The rest of the week Ella tried to be like Jesus, but every day her smile got a little smaller.
When Sunday came again, Ella wasn’t smiling at all.
As Mom brushed Ella’s long hair, big tears ran down Ella’s cheeks.
“I’m sorry, honey,” Mom said. “Did I pull your hair?”
“No,” Ella said. “I just didn’t do what I was supposed to do. I wasn’t like Jesus all week. It’s a lot easier to sing about being like Jesus than it is to really be like Him. Sister Hansen is going to be disappointed.”
Mom wiped Ella’s tears away. “Ella, how did you want to be like Jesus?”
Ella sniffed. “I knew I couldn’t do big miracles like Jesus did, but I thought I could do something important.”
Mom smiled. “You did lots of things to be like Jesus. You helped me find my keys when they fell under the couch. You helped Rosie and Libby practice their song for choir. You helped Gabe make a poster for his book report.”
“Those are just normal things,” Ella said. “I wanted to be like Jesus and do something big.”
Mom gave Ella a hug. “The biggest thing that Jesus did was helping us be able to return to Heavenly Father. I think helping is the biggest thing you can do too.”
Later at church, Ella was quiet as sacrament meeting started. In front of her, Sister Simmons was holding her new baby and her two little girls were wiggly and unhappy. It was hard for Ella to think about being like Jesus. One of the girls looked at her sadly.
Ella reached into her scripture bag and pulled out a pencil and a paper. She quickly drew a picture of the little girl and handed it to her. The little girl smiled as she showed the paper to her mom. Ella drew a picture of the other little girl too.
Sister Simmons smiled back at Ella. “Thank you,” she whispered.
Ella looked at Mom. “I guess helping people is being like Jesus. Helping people is the best thing I can do!”