Child's Morality Story
Adapted From Antique British Book
© By James Dearmore, December, 2009
[Gospel Web Globe]

(These Morality Stories are from an Antique Book published in England in the 1800's. Shillings, half-crowns, and pounds are the names of various denominations of British money, of course.)

"I wish I did not have to wear ragged clothes, and go without shoes" thought Walter Burns, as he lay on the dry turf, one bright summer afternoon, with the string of his hat in his mouth.

"If I had a hundred pounds, I know what I should do; I should buy my mother a new dress, and I would not let her work so hard."

As Walter lay dreaming of what he would do if he only had a hundred pounds, he saw a little bird fly to her nest and give food to her four little ones who were stretching their bills wide open, and all as hungry as they could be.

"Now, ought I not to be ashamed of myself?" said he. "Here is this little bird; she does not sit dreaming and wishing she had some food to give her children. No; she goes and gets it."

"Here am I, a strong boy, able to work, and able to help my mother; but I have been lying on the ground dreaming dreams, and watching the clouds, or looking up at the trees, as if I hoped food and money would drop from them."

"For shame, Master Walter! If you cannot do anything better, go and pick strawberries at a shilling a day. You can do that-can't you? The strawberries in Mr. Peck's garden are spoiling for want of somebody to pick them."

Walter ran off to Mr. Peck, and asked him whether he wanted a boy to help him to pick strawberries. "Yes," said Mr. Peck; "go to work, and I shall give you a penny for every box you can fill."

Walter went to work ; and, before sundown, he had filled ten boxes, for which Mr. Peck paid him tenpence. In four days the little boy had earned five shillings. How proud he was to hand them to his mother!

Walter had not been at work a week, before a farmer named Carr, who lived near by, and who had seen him working, said to him, "How much do you earn a day at this?"

"About a shilling," said Walter.

Come and help me, and I shall give you two shillings a day," said Mr. Carr.

"No, you shall not," said Mr. Peck, who had heard it all. "Do you think it is right to try to get my best helper away from me? Stay and work in my garden, Walter, and you shall have half-a-crown a day."

Walter had no wish to leave Mr. Peck; so he accepted his offer.

"This is better than lying in the sun," thought Walter, as he took his fifteen shillings home to his mother, every Saturday night. Soon she was able to buy a new dress for herself, and to hire a girl to help her to do the house-work.

"Doing is better than dreaming, mother, is it not?" said Walter, as he saw his mother in her nice new dress. "Yes, my boy," said Mrs. Burns, "let people see that you are willing to work, and you will always find plenty to do." — End of Story

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