Michael’s dad worked a lot. His job took him far away. Michael wasn’t sure what he did; he was only four and didn’t really understand. His mommy didn’t have a job. She stayed home and took care of him, his brother, and his sister. Michael wasn’t old enough to go to school, so he stayed at home with mommy.
After Chris and Sara got home from school, they would help mommy. They would put away laundry mommy had washed. Chris took out the trash. Sara helped set the table for dinner. Michael didn’t do much of anything. He wanted to help, but he was little.
One day, he decided to help his mommy do something. He tried to help with laundry, but he was too short to reach the washer, and the clothes were too hot to take out of the dryer.
The trash can was almost as tall as he was, and the bag was way too heavy for him to carry. He even tried to get food out of the fridge for mommy to cook, but he wasn’t strong enough to open the door. Michael was sad and sat on his bed crying.
His mommy came into the room and asked him, “What’s wrong, bug?”
“I’m little,” Michael said, rubbing his eyes.
“Well, of course, you’re little,” mommy said. “You’re only 4. But you’ll be bigger one day.”
“I don’t like being little,” Michael folded his arms with his bottom lip sticking out.
“What’s wrong with being little?” his mommy asked, putting her arm around him.
“I can’t help. I tried to do laundry, but the washer’s too high, and the dryer’s too hot. I tried to take the garbage out, but I’m not tall or strong enough. I tried to get food to make dinner, and I can’t open the door. I want to help, but I’m little.”
“I love that you want to help Michael,” mommy said. “But you don’t need to do chores to help.”
“But what can I do?” Michael asked.
“You can pray,” said mommy.
“I can pray?” Michel asked. “Like daddy?” He had seen his daddy pray many times. He prayed before dinner. He prayed for his kids. He prayed for mommy.
“Yes, like daddy. You can pray for daddy while he’s at work. Pray for your brother and sister at school. Pray for me because I miss daddy, and I have a lot to do for you, Chris, and Sara,” said mommy. “You can even pray before dinner.”
“I’m not too little?” Michael asked.
“Of course not,” said mommy. “God hears us pray no matter if you are big like daddy, or little like a bug.”
Michael laughed. He sniffed away the last of his tears.
That night Chris took out the garbage, and Sara set out plates for dinner. Then, Michael said a prayer before they ate. “Thank you, God, for this food. Thank you for my brother and sister and how they help mommy. Please help daddy with his job and help mommy take care of us. Thank you that I am little and can still help by praying. Amen.”
Originally published on June 25, 2019