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Peace in a Tin House

To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, February 17.

By Andrew McChesney


smita lived in a small tin house on a small piece of land in a small town in eastern Nepal.

Five people lived in the small house: Father, Mother, Grandmother, Asmita, and Asmita’s little brother. Many families grow their own food on the land around their houses in Nepal. But the small piece of land around Asmita’s house was too small to grow enough food to feed her family.

So, Father and Mother had to work extra hard to feed the family. Father and Mother had never gone to school, so they couldn’t read or write. They had never studied to work as a bus driver or a plumber or a teacher. So, they worked with their hands — picking things up, putting things down, and moving things around. Sometimes, they carried bricks or dug ditches. Other times, they planted and harvested crops.

It was difficult to pick things up, put things down, and move things around every day. After a long day of work, Father and Mother were very tired when they came home. They wanted to relax. They tried to relax by drinking alcohol.

But when Father and Mother drank, they began to argue. When they drank, they began to fight. The more they drank, the more they fought. The more they fought, the more they drank. Soon Father and Mother seemed to be drinking and fighting all the time.

Neighbors heard the fighting and came to the small tin house to try to help. Then the leaders of the small town tried to help. Even the police came and tried to help. But nothing changed. Father and Mother kept drinking and fighting.

Then Mother left. She got tired of drinking and fighting. She wanted a better life. She moved away to India to work. Asmita was left at home. Now only four people lived in the small house: Father, Grandmother, Asmita, and Asmita’s little brother.

With Mother gone, Asmita was put in charge of the house. She cooked the meals and cleaned up. It was hard work to pick things up, put things down, and move things around all day. It also was difficult living with Father. He kept on drinking. When he drank, there was no peace at home.

It seemed like life would never get better.

Then Grandmother started going to church on Sabbath. Asmita had never heard about church. But Grandmother was happy when she returned home from church on Sabbath. Asmita liked to see her smile. Grandmother told her stories about the God of heaven whom she had heard about at church. Asmita had never heard of this God. Her family worshipped gods of stone and wood. Asmita liked the stories.

One Sabbath, Asmita decided to go to church with Grandmother. She left her housework and took her little brother by the hand. They went to church together.

Other children warmly welcomed Asmita to the children’s Sabbath School. The teacher gave her a big smile. Asmita immediately knew that she wanted to go to church every Sabbath.

Today, Asmita is 12 years old, and every week she sings songs and recites Bible verses in Sabbath School. She is so happy. Life has become so much better with God.

Every Sabbath, Asmita asks Father to come to church, too, and she is praying that he will agree. “I think that if Father comes to church, he will stop drinking, and we will have peace at home,” she said.

Part of this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help establish a school where children like Asmita can study in eastern Nepal. Thank you for planning a generous Thirteenth Sabbath Offering.