Just One Egg


Based on a true story
Let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:7).

Johnny slowed his bike before turning into Mrs. Jones’s driveway. It was the day before Easter, and it was time for the neighborhood Easter egg hunt.

“I knew it,” he thought. “There’s Randy Mills. He’ll get the prize. He always does. I’ll have to listen to him brag for another year.”

“Hey, come on, slowpoke!” Randy yelled.

“I’m coming.”

Randy laughed. “Why are you frowning? Afraid you’ll get beat again?”

“Come line up, children,” Mrs. Jones called. “When I say, ‘Go,’ the smaller children will run to the backyard. When I say it again, the older children will follow.”

A few minutes into the hunt, Randy ran up to Johnny. “How many eggs have you found?”

“Nine.”

“Me too. Maybe we’ll tie for the prize.” He ran off to find more.

Johnny poked about here and there. He sure hoped to find another egg and beat Randy. He was looking under an already-searched bush when he heard a small sniff. A little girl was standing behind the bush crying. It was Laurie, Johnny’s neighbor.

“Hi, Laurie. Why are you crying?”

“I don’t have any eggs!” Laurie sobbed. “If I could find just one egg …” Laurie was much younger than most of the children, and she was crying as if her heart would break.

“Children, I believe all the eggs have been found. Let’s count up,” Mrs. Jones said.

“Now I’ll never find one.” Tears ran down Laurie’s face.

Johnny felt very bad for the little girl. As he looked at his full basket, an idea hit him. He quickly slipped his prettiest egg under the bush. “Laurie, did you look really well under here?”

“I think so.” She came around to his side of the bush, her eyes searching everywhere. Suddenly her face lit up. “Ooooh! Look at the pretty egg!”

Randy walked up and pounded Johnny on the back. “Well, we tied for first prize with nine eggs apiece.”

“I only have eight,” Johnny said quietly.

“I thought you said you had nine.”

“I made a mistake.”

“Wow! The prize is mine. Say, you’d better learn to count better, Johnny.” He laughed over his shoulder.

Johnny watched Randy claim the prize. He would have to listen to Randy brag for another year, but somehow it didn’t matter anymore. He smiled, remembering Laurie’s face as she found just one egg.

[Unselfish Spirit]

President Boyd K. Packer

“An unselfish spirit is essential to happiness.” President Boyd K. Packer Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles From a November 1997 general conference address.

[illustration] Illustrated by Paul Mann