For, if ye forgive men their trespasses your heavenly Father will also forgive you (3 Ne. 13:14).
Ashley and Sara gazed at the display case. The light seemed to dance on the silver, heart-shaped locket. “It sparkles like a star,” Sara said as she admired the treasure.
“When I get my allowance on Saturday, I’ll finally have enough money to buy it,” Ashley said, not taking her eyes off the locket. She had been saving her allowance all summer to buy it.
The bell hanging on the door of the shop jangled as the two girls left to begin their walk home. As they walked, Ashley’s mind was still on the locket. “I can’t wait to wear it to church next Sunday!”
“It’s the most beautiful locket I’ve ever seen,” Sara added, wishing deep down that she had seen it first. Her mind wandered to that hot June afternoon when they had ridden their bikes downtown. They’d gone inside the shop to cool off. As the cool breeze of the air conditioner gently washed over them, they looked at hair ribbons and jewelry. Sara was looking at some gold earrings on a counter display when Ashley spotted the locket in the display case below.
“Look at that!” she said in an almost-whisper, as if she did not want anyone else to hear her. “It’s beautiful! I just have to buy it! I’ll have to save up, of course, but I just have to have that locket.”
Why didn’t I see it first? Sara thought angrily. I love that locket! Now I can’t buy it because Ashley wants it. I even have enough money to buy it now! She hoped that Ashley would forget about the locket and she could buy it herself, but Ashley hadn’t.
The blaring horn of a passing car jerked Sara’s thoughts back into the present. Now I’ll never have the locket, she told herself.
Saturday morning, Ashley anxiously waited for her allowance. “Thanks, Mom. Is it all right if I go downtown to buy my necklace now?”
“Why don’t you wait a few minutes and let me drive you? I need to run a few errands anyway.”
“That would be great! I can hardly wait!”
They arrived at the shop and hurried inside. Ashley ran to the display case and searched the shelf. “It’s not here!”
“Don’t panic,” Mom said calmly. “Let’s ask the clerk if she knows anything about it.”
A friendly lady greeted them, “How may I help you ladies?”
“Could you please tell us what happened to the silver heart-shaped locket that used to be in this display case?” Mom asked.
“I’m sorry—it was sold yesterday. Is there anything else I can help you with?”
“No, thank you very much.” Mom gently guided Ashley toward the door.
Ashley didn’t say anything on the ride home. She just stared out the car window. My locket is gone! It isn’t fair!It just isn’t fair!
On Sunday, Ashley stood in front of the mirror in her bedroom. She wore her favorite dress—the bright green one—but it didn’t cheer her up. She gazed into the mirror and imagined how pretty the locket would have looked with it.
At church she looked for Sara. She wanted to tell her how sad she was about the locket. Finally she saw Sara in the corner talking excitedly with some girls in their class. As she joined them, Ashley saw the locket—her locket—around Sara’s neck. “How could you?” she cried. “You stole my locket!”
“It wasn’t your locket,” Sara snapped back. “And I didn’t steal it.”
“But you knew that I wanted it.”
“Well, I wanted it, too, and I had enough money to buy it, so I did!”
“I’ll never forgive you for this, Sara,” Ashley cried. All through Primary she glared at Sara, who just sat quietly and stared at the floor.
After church, Ashley stormed into the house, ran to her bedroom, and slammed the door. Soon Mom knocked on the door. “Ashley, Sara’s here to see you.”
“Tell her to go away! I never want to see her again!”
“She seems really upset. I think that you ought to talk with her.”
Ashley slowly walked to the front door, where Sara stood waiting on the porch. “What do you want?”
“I came to apologize. I’m sorry that I bought the locket that you wanted. It’s just so pretty! But I want you to have it. You don’t even have to buy it from me.” The necklace sparkled in the sunlight as Sara held it in her outstretched hand. “I’m really sorry. Can you forgive me?”
“No, I can’t. And I don’t want the locket now. It’s ruined—you’ve worn it!” Ashley slammed the door in Sara’s face, then stomped back to her bedroom. I’ll never forgive her for this, she told herself. Never!
Soon Mom appeared in the doorway. “What happened?”
Ashley told her how Sara had known that she had been saving up to buy the locket and had bought it, anyway. “She came here to apologize, but she’s too late!”
“So you won’t forgive her?”
Ashley shook her head.
“I think Sara is very sorry,” Mom said. “Don’t you think you should try?”
“I don’t care if she’s sorry. She knew it was wrong, but she did it anyway.”
“Ashley, how would you feel if Heavenly Father wouldn’t forgive you for the things that you’ve done wrong?”
Ashley was quiet for a minute. “I would feel terrible,” she answered softly.
“Would you want Him to tell you that you couldn’t be forgiven because you knew that what you did was wrong but did it anyway?”
“The Savior said that in order for Heavenly Father to forgive us for our mistakes, we must forgive other people.” Mom patted her on the shoulder and left her.
Kneeling by her bed, Ashley began to pray. “Heavenly Father, please help me to forgive Sara. …”
At recess the next day, Ashley found Sara sitting on the swings alone. “Hi, Sara,” she said timidly. Sara just stared at the ground and drew circles in the dirt with her foot.
“Please let me talk to you,” Ashley pleaded.
“OK,” Sara said at last.
“I’m sorry that I didn’t accept your apology yesterday. I don’t care about the locket anymore. You’re more important to me than any locket ever could be. Can you forgive me for being so mean to you?”
Sara finally looked up. “Of course I can. Ashley, I really am sorry that I bought the locket.”
“Thank you for saying so—it means a lot to me for us to be best friends again.” Ashley climbed into the swing next to Sara’s. As she began to swing higher and higher, she thought about how free she felt without a heart full of anger and resentment. She looked up at the sky and silently thanked Heavenly Father.