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“Oh, wow! I love this game. Can we play it?” Justin asked his neighbor, Matt.
“Sure!” Matt replied as he turned on the video game. “This is my brand-new game, so you have to build your character first, then you can explore and find neat stuff.”
“This is great!” said Justin. “I’ve only played a little bit with Jessie, but I had to use her princess character—yuck!” Justin made a goofy face.
“Well, I’ll let you make a good character just the way you like. Or maybe I should make you use a princess, too,” Matt teased.
Matt showed Justin which buttons to push so his character could walk around on the screen and collect energy balls and jewels. Not long after he got started, Matt’s mom came into the room.
“Justin, your mom wants you to go home now.”
“Aww. I just got going.” Justin hung his head. Then he jumped up and asked, “Can I take your game home with me? I can work on collecting stuff so I won’t be so far behind you next time we play.”
“Umm.” Matt thought for a minute. “I guess so. But you have to bring it back on Saturday so we can play it some more—and you can’t go past level 3.”
“I won’t. Thanks, Matt!” Justin grabbed the game disc and ran home.
All week long, Justin raced to his room after school and did his homework as fast as possible so he could play the video game. He wanted to be on the same level as Matt by Saturday.
“Today, I’ve gotta find that gigantic jewel,” Justin said to his mom, who was folding laundry. Justin turned on the game player and stared at the screen, waiting for something to happen. But the screen was blank. Justin poked the eject button to make the disc come out, but the machine was empty. “Huh? Where did the game go? Mom! Have you seen Matt’s game disc?”
“No, not lately. Where did you put it last?” Mom asked. “Did you put it up high where Ellie can’t reach it?”
“Oh no!” Justin said with a look of panic on his face. “I don’t know; I can’t remember.”
Just then, Ellie wandered into the room dragging her baby doll by its feet. “Ellie,” Mom said, “did you take the game disc that was in here?” She pointed to the player.
Ellie looked at Justin, who was waiting nervously for her answer. “No.” Ellie shook her head.
“Ellie, are you sure?” Justin asked. “Did you see the disc I was using?”
“Da round disc wif a hole?” Ellie perked up.
“Yes! That one! What did you do with it?”
“I dint do nuffing. You put it in your pocket,” Ellie replied.
Justin gasped. “Oh yeah, I remember.” Justin quickly checked his pockets, but there was no disc.
“You had it yesterday,” said Mom as she continued folding the clean clothes. “What pants were you wearing then?”
“My brown—uh oh,” Justin gulped as he watched his mom lift out a pair of brown jeans from the laundry basket. “Those,” he said.
“These?” she asked as she held up the crinkled jeans.
Justin grabbed the jeans and shoved his hands into the pockets. Sure enough, the game disc was there. Justin pulled it out and looked at the scratched-up disc. “It’s ruined! Matt’s gonna be so mad.”
“I’m sorry, Justin,” Mom said. “But you know that you need to check your pockets before you put your clothes into the laundry hamper.”
“I know. I guess I’ll have to buy a new game for Matt,” Justin moaned. “That’ll take forever!” Justin plodded through the kitchen and out the back door. He sat down on the porch steps, staring sadly at the ruined disc.
“Hi, Justin!” said Jessie as she came through the gate and sat by him on the porch. “What’s wrong?”
Justin showed her the ruined disc and explained how he’d have to buy a new one for Matt, but didn’t have enough money.
Jessie listened then asked, “What game is it? I can’t read the label.”
When Justin told her the name of the game, Jessie got a strange look on her face and suddenly jumped up. “I’ve gotta go, Justin. See ya later.” And she ran home.
Saturday finally came, but Justin wasn’t happy about it. He woke up worrying about how he was going to break the news to Matt that his favorite new game had been ruined.
Justin did his best to eat some breakfast, but his stomach felt like a rock. He knew he would have to apologize, but he didn’t know how he would ever be able to buy a new game for Matt. He knew it cost a lot of money—more than he could earn even with months of extra chores.
Justin trudged over to Matt’s house. He stared at his shoes while he waited for the door to open. He was surprised when Jessie opened the door.
“Hey, Justin! Come on in,” she said cheerfully.
Justin walked into Matt’s family room. He took a deep breath and told Matt what happened to the game he borrowed. “I’m really sorry; it was all my fault it got ruined.”
Matt and Jessie looked at each other, then they both grinned. “Justin,” Matt explained, “Jessie told me what happened to my game disc. At first, I was super mad. But then she gave me this.” Matt held out a game disc that looked exactly like the one Justin had borrowed.
“Huh? Jessie bought you a new one?” Justin was confused.
“No, Justin,” said Jessie. “It’s the one I had. You remember, I made you play it as a princess.” She giggled. “I knew you couldn’t pay for a new one, and I didn’t want you to be sad anymore or have Matt be mad at you. So I gave him my game.”
“Yeah, so you don’t have to buy me a new one,” Matt chimed in. “Jessie already took care of it.”
“I figured I could just play the game here with you guys.” Jessie smiled.
Justin looked at Jessie in shock. “Wow! Thank you, Jessie. You’re the best friend ever!”
“Let’s play!” Matt shouted as he put the disc into the player.
“I’m the princess!” Jessie exclaimed.
“I’m the red guy with the hat,” Matt said.
“And I’m so happy, I don’t care what character I am,” laughed Justin.
Justin & Jessie show kids how the Bible applies to real life! These weekly stories are part of Answers Bible Curriculum, our full-Bible, chronological Sunday school program for all ages.