Tempted to Steal
A little boy, whose name was Jim, was employed by a gentleman to weed some beds in his garden. There was a cherry tree in the garden full of nice ripe fruit. He was told not to take any of the cherries. He worked away diligently until it got towards noon, and the sun became hot, and he began to feel both hungry and thirsty. Then he looked towards the cherry tree. How ripe and juicy the rich, red fruit seemed! He thought how nice it would taste! He looked around. There was no one to see him. Something seemed to whisper, “Just one handful won’t be missed.” He went towards the tree, but felt very much afraid. If the wind rustled the leaves, he would stop and tremble, and look around, as if some one was coming after him. Still he went on, and reached up his hand to take hold of one of the branches. Just then, a little bird up in the tree began to chirp. It sounded to him like, “Jem, Jem.” He thought the bird was calling to him. His hand fell down. He walked quietly away from the tree. He remembered the commandment, “Thou shalt not steal.” Then he went into a corner behind some bushes. He kneeled down, and asked God to forgive him for thinking, for a moment, of stealing; and prayed for strength to resist temptation. Then he went back to his work and felt happy.