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It was a perfect spring day. The sky was blue, the grass was green, the sun was shining—but it was not too hot to play outside. And best of all, it was Saturday, so no one had to go to school.
Jessie was walking down the sidewalk toward her cousins’ house when she heard a voice behind her, “Wait up, Jessie!” She turned to see her friend Justin running to catch up to her. “I’m going to play soccer with Jeremy,” he said.
“Oh, and I’m going to play with Emily,” said Jessie.
“So, I guess we’re going to the same place then.” Justin laughed.
The two friends walked briskly toward Jeremy and Emily’s house. Jessie guided her doll stroller up to the door. “Hey, guys!” Justin and Jessie turned to see another neighbor, Matt, running toward them.
“Whatcha doin’?” asked Matt.
Justin answered, “I’m playing soccer with Jeremy. You wanna play, too?”
“Sure!” Matt followed Justin into the backyard to find Jeremy while Jessie went inside the house with her cousin Emily for a tea party with their baby dolls.
After a while, Jessie and Emily wandered outside. They carried their dolls to a grassy spot and sat down to watch the boys play soccer. “You know, Jessie, it would be fun to invite Olivia for a tea party sometime.”
“Yeah!” Jessie agreed then chuckled. “Remember when I first met Olivia at school? We were planning to get back at her because she wasn’t being nice to me.”
“Right!” Emily remembered. “We had all kinds of plans like cracking an egg over her head for revenge.”
“But then, just as I was about to do something to her, I saw that she was hurt,” Jessie explained.
“And that’s how you became friends, right?” asked Emily.
“Yep.” Jessie smiled. “God helped me be kind to her and help her instead of getting revenge. Now she’s one of my good friends.”
Just then, the boys all came over and flopped down in the grass beside the girls. “Whew! I’m tired and thirsty,” said Jeremy.
“Want some juice?” asked Emily, passing out cups to the boys.
“Thanks,” said Jeremy. “I love soccer. I’m glad we have a big yard to play in.”
“How big was the yard you had before you moved here?” asked Justin.
“Oh, maybe half this big,” Jeremy replied. “Remember when we moved here, Emily?”
“Yeah,” said Emily. “We were kinda scared at first. Dad lost his job, and that seemed really bad.”
“But then,” Jeremy explained, “Dad and Mom prayed and asked God to show them what to do. And Jessie’s mom, Auntie Bev, found this house just down the street.”
“Yeah,” Emily continued. “The night when we first got here, we all took turns thanking God for giving Dad a job in this town and giving us a house so close to our cousins.” Emily reached over and gave Jessie a hug.
“God does lots of cool things,” said Justin. “I remember when he brought my dog, Cookie, to me.”
“Yes! I was there, too,” said Jessie excitedly. “His real name is Cookies and Cream because that’s the ice cream you got when you found him.”
“Or when he found me.” Justin laughed. “I turned around, and there he was following me down the street. I think he wanted my ice cream!”
“But you were really sad when your dad had to take him to the animal shelter,” Jessie added.
“Oh, yeah! I really loved Cookie, but Dad said if he did belong to someone, they would look for him at the shelter. So it wouldn’t be right to keep him, or his family might never find him.”
“So how’d you get him then?” asked Jeremy.
“Nobody came for Cookie, so I got to go and redeem him. I bought him back with my own money,” said Justin proudly. “And you know what? God even made sure I had the money to do that. I was going to go to the store and buy a new dump truck. I was saving my money and finally had enough. But then when Cookie followed me home, I forgot about going to the store. So I still had my money!”
“Wow! I didn’t know that, Justin,” said Emily. “God is awesome!”
“Speaking of dogs,” said Matt. “Remember when Penny got lost?”
“Oh, that was terrible!” Jessie shuddered. “I felt so bad for you, Matt.”
“But after you guys prayed, we found her.” Matt continued, “I think that was when I first wanted to know more about God.”
“That’s so cool!” said Jessie. “I think we forget that God is the one that makes things happen the way they do.”
“Yeah,” added Justin, “our Sunday school teacher says that God is sovereign—he controls everything that happens.”
“Isn’t it funny how some things start out looking kinda bad? But God can make it all work out right,” said Jeremy.
“My dad said that God is always good, so he doesn’t cause bad things to happen,” Jessie explained. “But since there’s sin in the world, God might allow bad stuff to happen for a reason, like helping us learn to trust him.”
“That’s right. God can make even bad stuff like a lost dog or a lost job turn out to be part of something good,” said Justin.
“I’m glad God is in control!” Jessie exclaimed.
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.