Filling Up with Love

By Sarah Cutler

(Based on a true story)

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When we’re helping, we’re happy (Children’s Songbook, 198).

Jeffrey slid the piano books into his bag and walked to the front door. “See you next week, Mrs. Roper!” he said.

“You did well in your lesson,” she said. “If you want any of the apples on the porch, you can have them. I’ve given up.”

Mrs. Roper’s porch was covered with boxes of apples from her trees. She’d picked the apples a few weeks ago, and they had been sitting outside ever since. Last week Jeffrey heard Mrs. Roper tell Mom she wanted to make apple-pie filling if she could find time.

But it looked like she hadn’t found time. The apples had big brown spots, and some of them were leaking juice. Jeffrey glanced back inside, where Christy had started her lesson. Mrs. Roper looked tired.

When Mom came to pick him up, Jeffrey had an idea. “Mom, let’s make Mrs. Roper’s apples into pie filling,” he said.

Mom smiled. “Great idea! Help me carry some boxes.” Together they carried three boxes of apples to their car and took them home.

First they peeled the apples. “This will give Mrs. Roper’s family something good to eat,” Jeffrey told Mom.

Then they cut the spoiled parts off the apples. “This will give Mrs. Roper time to do other important things,” Jeffrey told Mom.

While they sliced the apples, Jeffrey told Mom, “This will let Mrs. Roper know how much we love her.”

Soon the pie filling was ready. Jeffrey and Mom went back to Mrs. Roper’s house. When she answered the door, Jeffrey handed her the jars of pie filling. “These are for you!” Jeffrey said. Mrs. Roper was surprised.

When Mrs. Roper said, “Thank you!” she had a very big smile. Seeing her happy made Jeffrey feel warm and happy inside.

Illustration by Brad Teare