Maddie’s Grumpy Afternoon


I did believe all the words which had been spoken by my father; wherefore, I did not rebel against him like unto my brothers (1 Nephi 2:16).

Maddie was having fun coloring in her coloring book when she heard Mom calling her to get in the car so they could run errands. Maddie did not like going on errands. She pretended she didn’t hear her mom and kept coloring.

Finally, Mom came to Maddie. “Maddie, I have been calling you and calling you. Everyone is in the car, and we are waiting for you. We need to go to the bank, to the grocery store, and to put gas in the car. Please hurry.”

“I don’t want to come,” Maddie said. “Errands are boring. They take forever!”

“I need you to please obey,” Mom said. “You can bring your crayons and coloring book.”

Maddie growled and grumbled as she picked up her things and stomped after Mom to the car.

“This is not fair!” Maddie whined.

As they drove along, Maddie had a hard time keeping her crayons inside the lines of the picture she was coloring.

“I can’t color in the car,” Maddie said. “Every time you turn it makes me mess up!”

Maddie thought if she was miserable running errands, everyone else should be miserable too. At each stop the family made, Maddie had something to complain about. She complained and complained and complained.

When they finally got home, Maddie ran to her room. She was glad to be home. But she was starting to feel sorry about the way she had behaved. Making everyone else miserable hadn’t made her feel any happier.

She thought about the family home evening lesson Mom had taught the week before. Mom talked about Nephi and his brothers Laman and Lemuel. She asked who had been more obedient, and Maddie said Nephi. When Dad asked her why, Maddie said that Nephi was the one who did what he was asked to do.

Dad explained that Laman and Lemuel had gone with their family into the wilderness and with Nephi to get the brass plates from Laban. But Laman and Lemuel had murmured and complained. They were miserable and tried to make everyone else miserable. But Nephi respected his parents and Heavenly Father. Even when he was asked to do something hard, Nephi obeyed without complaining.

Maddie realized that even though she had gone to the car as she had been asked, and even though she had gone on all of the errands with her family, she had not been like Nephi.

Maddie put down her crayons. She walked into the kitchen and apologized to her family for the way she had acted. Mom hugged Maddie and asked her to help her brother set the table for dinner. Maddie didn’t really want to help, but she said OK and went to the cupboard to get the plates without complaining. Mom smiled at her, and Maddie smiled back. She was feeling better already.

Illustrations by Maren Scott