“Searching for Sir Crunch-a-Lot,” Friend, November 2019
Mom pushed the grocery cart up and down the aisles of the bishops’ storehouse while Mackenzie looked for her favorite cereal. All she could find were the boring kinds, like corn flakes and oatmeal. Where was the Sir Crunch-a-Lot? She sighed and pulled a bag of granola off the shelf and put it in the cart.
Mom said the bishops’ storehouse was the Church’s store, and it helped people like them who didn’t have a lot of money. Mackenzie didn’t understand. She knew Dad lost his job, but why did that mean she had to eat boring food?
Mackenzie followed her mom to the front of the store. Mom gave a slip of paper to the woman at the counter. Mom and the woman talked for a moment, and then Mom rolled their cart out to the car.
“Mom, why did you give her that paper instead of money?” Mackenzie asked.
Mom smiled. “You know we came here because we don’t have a lot of money right now, right?”
Mackenzie nodded and started putting groceries in the car.
“Well, when people at church pay their fast offerings every month, that money helps people who are having a tough time.”
“Like us,” Mackenzie said.
“Right,” said Mom. “Some of that money buys food for people who need it. Your dad and I visited with the bishop, and he told us we can shop here for a few months until Dad gets a job. That paper was a list of the things we need.”
Mackenzie raised her eyebrows. “So other people are paying for this food? That’s really nice of them. But why don’t they have better cereals?”
Mom laughed as they finished putting the groceries in the car. “Well, they might not have some of the things you love, but it’s good food. I’m really grateful for it because it means we won’t be hungry.”
“Yeah, I guess so,” Mackenzie said. But she couldn’t help thinking of a big bowl of Sir Crunch-a-Lot.
The next day at school, Mackenzie stared at the ham sandwich and apple in her lunch bag. She frowned. Most of her friends were eating pizza from the cafeteria, and it smelled delicious!Then Sarah, her friend from church, sat down next to her. Mackenzie noticed that she didn’t have any lunch.
“Why aren’t you eating?” Mackenzie asked.
“My family is fasting for my uncle,” Sarah said. “He doesn’t have a job right now, so we’re praying for him.”
Mackenzie’s jaw dropped. “But it’s not even Fast Sunday!”
“Yeah, it’s pretty hard being hungry at school,” Sarah said. “But I wanted to fast with my family.”
Mackenzie remembered how Mom said fast offerings helped pay for their groceries. She thought of all the kind people who fasted on Fast Sunday and gave money to help her family have enough to eat.
Suddenly pizza didn’t seem so important, and neither did Sir Crunch-a-Lot. She said a silent prayer to thank Heavenly Father. Then she took a big bite of her sandwich. Gratitude made everything taste better.