Haystacks and Popcorn

Todays Children’s Story, boys and girls, began several years ago. Susy, Freddy, and Linda were in the second grade. Every day Susy would rush home after school to tell her mommy about all the exciting things she had learned at school.
“Mommy, Mommy!” she shouted one day as she banged through the front door. “You’ll NEVER guess what happened at school today.”
“Well, let’s see….” Mommy paused to think. “Did Freddy get sick?”
“Did Allen bring his dog?”
“NO!” Susy was dancing with glee. “We got a new girl in our class! She has pretty green eyes and long blond hair and she doesn’t have a Daddy… Just a mommy.”
Mommy listened patiently while Susy told her all about the new girl.

“Will the new girl be going to our church, too?” Mommy asked.
“I don’t think so.”
“Well maybe we should begin praying for Marybeth and her mommy, and invite them to church.
“When Friday came, Susy’s Mom invited Marybeth’s mom to come to church with them.
Marybeth’s mommy politely refused, but said that it would be O.K. if Marybeth wanted to go.

So week after week Marybeth would go home with Susy after school. She would spend the night and go to church the next morning with Susy’s family.
One day she asked Susy’s Mommy why they always ate haystacks on Friday night.
“Well, that’s sort of an Adventist thing,” she laughed. “A lot of of Advents eat haystacks.”
Marybeth also noticed that Susy’s mommy lit a big fat candle just before sitting down to eat. “Why do you do that? Can’t you just turn on the light?”

“Well’” replied Susy’s mommy, “It just helps us to remember that this the beginning of a special day.”
“What about the popcorn on Saturday night?” Marybeth asked.
“Oh, that!” she laughed. “I don’t know how that started, but most of our friends eat popcorn on Saturday nights, too.”

Soon, all the kids at Susy’s school were praying for Marybeth’s Mommy. They wanted her to start coming to church, also. But, every time someone would invite her, she would politely refuse.
Meanwhile, Marybeth was so excited to have so many new friends and things to do on the weekends. She so wanted to be an Adventist, like her friends.

As the school year got closer to Christmas, the teacher began teaching the students some new songs to sing for a Christmas program at church. Marybeth eagerly learned the songs. This time, when Teacher invited Marybeth’s mommy to church, she explained that Marybeth would be singing in the Christmas program.
“Yes! I would like to come and hear her sing,” she smiled.
The following Friday, she refused to let Marybeth go home with Susy. “I’ve got a better idea,” she consoled. “We can go to church together.”

“REALLY?” Marybeth danced for joy.

A few weeks later her Mommy wanted to start having Bible studies. It wasn’t long until she was ready for baptism.
A few days before the baptism, Susy’s mommy received a sobbing, wailing phone call from Marybeth. She could hardly tell what the problem was, so she hung up and drove to Marybeth’s home, where she found Marybeth lying in the yard wailing.
“There, there…” comforted Susy’s Mommy. “Dry your tears a little and tell me what’s wrong.”

“M-M-Mommy had a yard sale today and she sold our popcorn maker! We, can never be good Adventists, now!” she cried with a new volley of tears.

Looking up toward the house Susy’s mommy saw Marybeth’s mommy standing on the porch laughing.
“You two come on into the house. I have something to show you.”
Slowly Marybeth was led into the house where her mommy opened up a bag from Wal-Mart. “We WILL be good Adventists, I promise. Here is the new corn popper I bought to help us.”