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Time Tunnel

1. The Candy Store


I began, “Albert’s mom gave him one dollar so that he could go down to the candy store and buy something for himself.”




Larry interrupted again, “Come on, Grandpa, you gotta be kidding! How much candy is a little boy going to be able to buy with just one dollar?”


I responded, “All right, Larry, let’s just get on with the story.”


Larry said quietly, “Oooo Kkkk.”




As Albert was running down to the store, actually skipping, he had a smile on his face. Albert loved to go to the candy store. Albert really loved going to the candy store on Monday afternoon because there was a special two for one.


As Albert was skipping along, a memory came back to him about the accident. He didn’t like thinking about it, but it was like it just came back to him from time to time. Albert started to remember what it was like when he could run like the rest of the boys. But now, Albert was just a little bit different than the rest. On the outside, it appeared that Albert was OK with it, but there were some emotions hiding inside.


When Albert got to the candy store, he walked around, looking in all of the display cases. He very slowly looked at each piece of candy, imagining in his mind what it would taste like. It was like he really wanted every single piece, but he knew that he didn’t have enough money to buy all of it. He didn’t feel like he could get close enough to the candy to really taste it, so he touched the display case with his fingers as he was imagining what it tasted like.


The shop owner was watching Albert walk around his shop. This is what Albert did every time he came in. After Albert left the shop, the owner always had to go around and clean all of the display case windows.


Mr. Steinberg said, “So, Albert, what are you gonna have today?”


Albert replied, “I’m still trying to decide.”


After Albert, walked around the whole store, he came back to where the store owner was standing.


Albert asked what he always asked, “Where is the special of the week, Mr. Steinberg?”


Mr. Steinberg just rolled his eyes and looked at Albert and replied, “So, young man, you’ve decided you don’t like any of these other luscious candies?”


Albert said, “That’s not it, Mr. Steinberg. I love all of your candy. I just want to find out what your special is today.”


Mr. Steinberg questioned, “Does it have anything to do with the fact that you get two pieces for the price of one?”


After no response from Albert, Mr. Steinberg continued, “Well, this is my special. It is a strawberry mint truffle, which is mostly strawberry flavored with just a touch of mint.”


Albert thought for his usual length of time. Mr. Steinberg estimated it to be about three seconds.


Albert said, “I’ve decided I’ll go with your special today. I have one dollar to spend on the candy.”


Mr. Steinberg chuckled, “I figured that’s what you were going to ask for. I already have it ready for you, all packaged up in a little box like you always want it.”


Albert repeated that he appreciated him very much, and he really liked all of the candy in the store.


As Albert started to go home, he wasn’t skipping. He was just walking slowly along the sidewalk as he was starting to recall the accident again. But this time he decided he was not going to dwell on it.


Albert stopped at his friend’s house to share his candy with him.




I asked, “Well, boys and girls, that’s the end of chapter 1. What do you think of it?”


Sally said, “Did you bring some of the candy from the store so we can taste it, Grandpa? While you were telling the story, my mouth was getting ready to try it.”


I responded, “Oh, no! I knew I forgot to bring something!”


All of the kids started moaning and groaning. One of the boys sitting in the back slapped his forehead.


I questioned, “Why did you all think that I had some of the candy with me today? Did you think that I was the boy in the story?”


After a lot of blank stares, I asked, “So, boys and girls, why do you think I read the story on the last day of the year?”


After a short silence, Lisa said, “I’m sure you’re going to tell us, Grandpa.”


Here was my explanation:

A lot of adults start to think about what they might be doing this coming year. They make New Year’s resolutions, which are things that a person is expecting to change in their life for the better. Sometimes people use resolutions as things to try to correct the past. They want to go into a time tunnel. But of course they know they can’t actually go back and change the past, so they try to do some things differently for their future.


I asked the boys and girls, “On the outside, Albert seemed like he was doing OK. Do you think that Albert was wishing that he had a time tunnel to go back before the accident?”


I think the story touched some of the children, because we had a really good discussion for the next few minutes about things in our past that we don’t like, things in general about our lives that we don’t like, and things that we think we can do to try to make our lives better.


I reminded the boys and girls that God has a plan for each of our lives. There will be times in our lives that we’re not sure why something happened or what’s going to happen next. God doesn’t want bad things to happen to us, but He will work all things for our good if we trust Him.

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