“Mama, what does that verse mean?” Rosie asked as she finished her cereal one morning. She sat looking up at the white paper on the fridge. “ ‘Ye shall ask what ye will,’ ” she read slowly, “ ‘and it shall be done unto you.’ (John 15:7)”
“It means that if you ask God for something, He will do it for you,” Mom said, looking up from her dishwashing.
Mom smiled. “It depends what you are asking for,” she said. “The first part of the verse says: ‘If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you.’ That means, if we are living close to Jesus and doing what He wants us to do.”
“Then I can ask for what I want?” Rosie asked.
“Yes, if we ask in faith believing, He has promised to give it,” Mom said. She turned back to the kitchen sink and Rosie sat quietly, thinking. I want to please Jesus. He can give me what I ask for. What should I ask for first?
The back door opened and big-brother Chad appeared. He wore a frown on his face. “I think a gopher is eating the potatoes we planted,” he said. “There are mounds all over the garden and when I dug up the tunnel, look what I found.” He held up half of a potato. Rosie could see teeth marks on it where the gopher had chewed.
“Haven’t you set traps?” Mom asked.
“Yes, but it doesn’t work,” Chad said, looking gloomier. “It just digs new tunnels around and eats more of our vegetables. Yesterday it was the carrots.”
“I know,” Mom said, with a sigh. “But try again. The Lord knows we planted extra this year so we could give more vegetables to the neighbors.”
Rosie didn’t wait to hear more, but slipped quietly off her chair. “I know what I shall ask for first,” she whispered to herself as she hurried to her bedroom. She knelt by the bed and thought a moment. “Dear Lord, help me to be a good girl today and obey,” she began. “I know You can send the gophers away so they won’t eat our garden. Please, will you do it for me? Amen.”
“Rosie!” Mom called. “You need to wash your dishes and do your chores.”
“Yes, Mom!” Rosie said, and hurried off to the kitchen.
Chores didn’t take as long as usual that morning. Rosie was practicing her addition flashcards on the couch when she heard Irene talking to Mom. “If you can’t drive me to the library, maybe I can bike there this morning if it isn’t raining,” Irene said. “I need to return the book that is overdue.” Rosie looked out the window. Dark clouds made the sky look gray and stormy. Here and there she could see a little blue sky.
“Dear Father in heaven,” she whispered, looking hard at the clouds, “Make the sun shine, please.” Rosie smiled. It seemed that the sun had peeped through the clouds a little. “It is just behind the clouds, but it will come out soon,” Rosie told herself. She went back to her work, humming the chorus to Irene’s favorite song:
“Just behind the cloud,
Just behind the cloud,
We are sure the sun is shining just behind the cloud!”*
Irene came into the room and smiled. “Just see, Rosie,” she cried, looking out of the window. “I think your singing has chased away the rain!” And sure enough, a bright blue was filling the sky and the sun was shining through.
“God sent the rain away, because I asked Him to,” Rosie said, solemnly.
“Yes, and He’s going to get the gopher caught, too. I just know it.”
Irene laughed. “We will see,” she said, pulling on her coat. “I am thankful for the sunshine at least.” She tucked a book under her arm and went outside.
Daniel had been sitting at the kitchen table doing a page of math. “Rosie!” he whispered, when the door had closed. “I know what you should pray for. You should pray that we don’t have to do any more math!”
Rosie looked at her brother and frowned. “I don’t think that I should,” she said slowly.
“Why not? Wouldn’t it be great if we never had to do math any more?”
“I think Jesus wants me to do my math,” said Rosie. “Besides, we would be stupid if we didn’t do our schoolwork.”
Daniel sighed. “I guess you’re right. I just wish I could go outside and try out the kite I made with Dad. This borrowing takes forever!” He stared glumly at his math paper.
“Maybe if you set your mind on your work it would help,” Mom said, coming into the room with a basket of laundry. “Don’t you remember? When the people had a mind to work the wall was built in record time.”
“I’m done with my math,” Rosie said, jumping up. She smiled mischievously at her brother. As she set her flashcards on the table, she whispered, “I’ll pray that your mind will work so we can go outside soon.”
“My mind does work!” Daniel grumbled, but then he smiled at his sister. “Okay. Pray that I will get my work done really fast. I want to go outside before the rain starts.”
“But I told you, it won’t rain,” Rosie said, shaking her finger at him. “Don’t you remember? I prayed it wouldn’t rain, ’cause Irene is going to the library.”
Mom laughed. “Maybe you should pray that I would have some helpers to fold laundry. It needs to be done,” she said, looking at Rosie with a merry smile.
Rosie laughed, too. “I think your helpers will come really soon!” she said, and skipped down the hall to her bedroom.
It was not long until she was back with Emma and two boxes. “We fold and put away clothes, ma’am,” she said with a curtsy. “Would you like some help?” And never was the laundry done so fast as that morning!
It was only eleven o’clock when Mom pronounced that all their work was done and they could go outside. “You have been such good workers this morning,” she said, and then smiled at Rosie. “The Lord has helped you, hasn’t He?”
“The verse was true, Mama,” Rosie said, pointing at the white paper on the fridge. “I asked for things, and He gave them to me!”
“The sun is shining and I think it is even a bit windy,” Daniel said with a grin. He held up his kite. “Can we go down to the empty lot at the corner to try it out, Mom? There aren’t any power lines down there.”
“Yes, if Chad will go with you,” Mom said. “I like to please my children when they ask for good things, too.”
Rosie and Daniel dashed outside. They found Chad by the back porch staring at something lying by the steps. He kicked it with his shoe and whistled. “Just look at what the cat caught!”
“Is it a rat?” Daniel asked, picking up a stick to poke it.
Rosie bent closer to look at the furry brown animal. “But it has a short tail. What is it, Chad?”
Rosie looked up quickly and smiled. Her big brother smiled back.
“God caught it for us,” she said excitedly. “I just knew He would!”