Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Scooter

When Jason was nine years old, he saw a commercial for a scooter.  The scooter was red with white wheels.  It had an adjustable handle which would compensate for his smaller than average size.  The cost of the scooter was forty nine ninety nine.  After he watched the commercial he ran to his mother and told her how much he wanted it. 

“Oh, please, please, please get me the scooter mommy,” he said.
“Now Jason, I am not going to just buy you a scooter, you have a bike and don’t need the scooter,” she replied.
“But I really want and need it mom and I will take really good care of it,” he said from his knees.
“Don’t you remember what we talked about?  Do you really need it? “She asked.
“Oh yes mommy, I need it, I have to have it.”
“You don’t need it Jason,” she said, “You just want it.  What we need is food, water, shelter, and family.  God has given you all those things, anything else is a want.  But if you really want it, you can save your allowance and do odd jobs until you have saved enough money.” 
“Ok mom, I will work really hard so I can get it,” he exclaimed.
Jason started by out by washing the family cars.  He then went door to door and asked if he could wash their cars for a small fee.  He began to wash cars around the neighborhood.
Each day he would go to school and sit with his friend Keith and tell him all about how much he had made yesterday and how great his scooter was going to be.  Keith, who was really quiet would always nod and a sheepishly smile back at Jason.  When Jason got home from school he would make his rounds and see who wanted their car washed or some yard work done.   One day while going house to house a neighbor offered him ten dollars if he would paint her fence.  Jason was so excited that for the next three days after school he could be found painting that fence until it was too dark to see. 
On the third day his neighbor came out and took at a look at the fence.  She loved the job Jason had done on the fence.  She loved it so much that she gave him fifteen dollars instead of ten.  That put Jason over the top, with the extra five dollars he had raised the fifty dollars he needed for his scooter.
The next day at school he was so excited.  At lunch he told Keith all about how he was going to get off the bus and his mom was going to take him over to the bike shop that had the scooter for sale and buy it this afternoon.  In between bites of his sandwich and his excited scooter conversation, he noticed that Keith wasn’t eating anything.
“Hey, where’s your lunch today Keith,” asked Jason.
“Oh, I’m not hungry today.  I’ve got to go Jason, talk to you soon.”
Jason watched Keith walk out of the cafeteria and could tell something was wrong but he wasn’t sure what it was.  After school, Jason jumped off the bus and ran into the house.  He pulled up the mattress on his bed and pulled out the envelope with his fifty dollars in it.  He then went and got his mom.
“Let’s Go mom,” he said excitedly.
“Ok Jason, let me get my keys.”
As they drove into downtown, his excitement continued to build.  He has never raised up enough money to buy anything and here he was going to get his brand new scooter.  He couldn’t believe it.
After parking their car at a meter on the street they started to walk toward the bike shop.  Jason wanted to run but his mom won’t let him.  As they rounded the corner they could see the shop just ahead of him.  As them got closer, Jason stopped and stared down the street. 
“What’s wrong Jason,” his mom asked.
“Mom, that’s Keith over there, a friend of mine from school.”
Jason pointed over to boy sitting on a milk crate under a plastic sheet tied between two trees.  The boy was wrapped up in a coat and was holding a sign.  Jason started to walk toward him.  He looked closer at the sign.
Homeless, will work for food was written on the sign.  Jason’s jaw was open wide in disbelief. 
“Keith, your homeless?” he asked as he walked up to Keith.
Shocked and surprised to see Jason, “Umm…Yeah… My dad lost his job a earlier this year and we couldn’t pay the mortgage.  He works odd jobs to feed us, but it has been really hard to find work.”
Dumbfounded, Jason asked “Why didn’t you tell me?”
“It’s embarrassing,” said Keith, “I didn’t want people to know.”
Jason just turned and looked at his mom, he didn’t know what to say or do.  Then he remembered what his mom said. 
“You just want it.  What we need is food, water, shelter, and family.  God has given you all those things, anything else is a want.  But if you really want it, you can save your allowance and do odd jobs until you have saved enough money.” 
Without a word, Jason turned to Keith, pulled out his scooter money and gave it too Keith. 
“What are you doing Jason?  This is for your scooter” exclaimed Keith.
“God wants you to have food, water, and shelter.  This may not get all of that for you, but it’s a start,” said Jason with a tear in his eye.
Jason turned and walked away holding his mom’s hand.  She smiled down at him.
“I’m proud of you” she said.
“I’m just doing what God wants me to do.  Who needs a scooter?  Not, me, I don’t need one, but Keith needs food so I wanted to help.”
When he got home, Jason went to his neighbor’s house and asked if there was anything he could do for money.  He washed cars, raked leaves, painted fences, and washed windows.
Every day at school, Jason would take his chore money and buy Keith lunch.  He never said a word to anyone, he just spoke through his Christ like actions.

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