Trying to Be Like Jesus Christ

By Megan Wright, age 11


My “Buddy,” My Friend

Love the Lord thy God, … walk in his ways, and … keep his commandments (Deut. 30:16).

My best friend moved, and I knew that when school started in the fall, I would be without her. I rode my bike to the school and checked the class listing posted in the window. There would be girls I knew in my class, but not one I could really call a close friend. There was one girl, though, Katie, * who I really wanted to be friends with. We both played the violin, we had been together on the student council, we were in the same math group, and our dads had even worked at the same office long before we ever met.

On the first day of school, I was asked to be a “buddy” to Amanda, * one of the severely learning-disabled students in my class. This assignment required me to play with her at recess, take her to lunch, and generally be with her at all times to help meet her needs.

I was assigned to help Amanda for a whole week! I felt anxious about the precious time slipping away as the other girls formed into groups and began new friendships. I felt angry and resentful of Amanda because I didn’t have time to make friends with Katie. I worried that I wouldn’t ever fit in if I didn’t hurry and get into a group.

Then I remembered what I had been taught about Amanda’s sacred nature. When my mom was a teenager, she had worked with challenged children, too, and she taught me that they are precious in the eyes of the Lord. I remembered that Amanda’s spirit was innocent and pure. She had already been promised a place in the celestial kingdom, and if I live worthily, I could count on having an eternal friendship with her there.

I talked with my parents and was promised that if I loved Amanda and served her with a cheerful heart, I would be happy. They said that if I followed the Savior’s example and showed her love and kindness, a greater happiness would fill my heart than having ten friends would!

I chose to stay with Amanda, and I learned to really love her. She makes me so happy when she smiles and says my name! I can tell that she loves me too.

I know that I was blessed for making the right choice to serve Amanda. Not only do I have her for a friend, but I have become friends with Katie as well!

[illustrations] Illustrated by Mike Eagle

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    Names have been changed