The Circle Game


“Mommy,” Marla called, frowning, “I’m hungry!”

“Lunch isn’t ready yet, but while you wait, you can play a game,” said Mother.

Marla’s frown vanished. “OK!”

Mother picked up a ball of string, opened the back door, and said, “Follow me.”

Marla skipped along beside her mother. The sun danced on Mother’s hair as they made a big circle with the string in the yard.

“Inside the circle,” Mother explained, “are many wonders of God’s world. While I’m fixing lunch, I want you to count them.”

Marla’s smile faded. “All I see is grass.”

“Look carefully. Not all of God’s wonders are big,” Mother explained.

Marla sat inside the circle. She saw a purple violet blooming.

Next, she discovered an acorn missed by the squirrels. The brown shell had cracked open, and a sprout was curling out of it. Marla gazed at the tall, leafy branches above her. Will this little sprout grow that big? she wondered.

Nearby, an earthworm poked its way through the earth, seeming to wave hello.

Her eyes now saw tiny ants working their way through their grass jungle.

When Mother returned, Marla proudly shared her discoveries with her.

“What a good detective you are,” Mother praised her. “But I see one of God’s wonders that you missed—a very large one, compared to all these others.”

“Where? Where?” Marla asked, looking around.

“Why, you, of course!” Mother told her. “To me, you’re the most special of God’s wonders in that circle.”

[illustrations] Illustrated by Shauna Mooney Kawasaki