Samson's Fish Dinner

A Lesson on Forgiveness | By Cheryl Mariano

Sample "Samson's Fish Dinner," one of Cheryl Mariano's eight fictional stories based on real life situations. Grades K-5 will find her stories fun and easy to understand. The objective is to reinforce biblical truths and applications, with each story including a simple, fun activity for children. Available now on Amazon. 

Forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32b (KJV)

"Hooray!" shouted the Cross family children when they heard school was canceled due to a snow day. Chris and Lena decided to play board games in the living room while younger sister Tara helped mom bake cookies. Realizing the monopoly game was still in Lena's bedroom, Chris volunteered to go upstairs and get it.

There was a standing rule in the Cross family that Lena's bedroom door was to always remain closed. She had two pet goldfish and they were always a tasty temptation to Samson, the family cat. However, when Chris got the monopoly game he forgot to close the door, now Samson was in Lena's room lying on her bed! Before you could say lickety-split, Samson leaped off Lena's bed, knocking the fish bowl over and breaking it into pieces, and then proceeded to eat the goldfish! Licking his paws he laid back down to finish his nap. 

When Chris and Lena finished playing the games, Lena went upstairs to her bedroom. 

"Oh no!" she cried out, "Who opened my door?" 

When she walked into her room and saw Samson and the empty fishbowl she screamed, "Mom!"

Mother and Chris ran up stairs. "What is it Lena, what's wrong?" mother asked.

"Someone left my door open and Samson ate my goldfish!"

Mother turned and looked. Sure enough water was everywhere, and the broken fish bowl was empty. 

Lena couldn't believe it! She kept saying over and over, "My goldfish, my goldfish, that stupid cat ate my goldfish!" 

"Chris, it's all your fault!" Lena shouted, "You left my bedroom door open!"

Mother went over to Lena's bed and picked up Samson. 

"That's right, get out Samson!" Lena screamed, "And you too Chris, I'll never speak to you again!" 

Chris felt badly about what happened, he tried apologizing, but Lena refused to hear it. Sadly he left her bedroom.

"Honey I am so sorry this happened." Mother said as she helped Lena clean up the mess. "Is there anything I can do to make you feel better? Do you want some cookies or something?" 

"No, that won't help!" Lena snapped. She was angry and sad at the same time and just wanted to be left alone.

When Poppa came home from work, mother told him about the goldfish incident. A few minutes later Lena heard a knock on her bedroom door. It was Poppa, "May I come in?" he asked.

He sat on the edge of Lena's bed while she told him all about what happened. 

"I am very sorry for what happened," Poppa said, "But Lena, you need to forgive Chris."

"Why? He's been told a gazillion times not to leave my door open!"

"Because God has forgiven you." Poppa said gently. 

"Let me ask you this, have you asked Jesus to wash away all your sins?" Through her tears Lena nodded her head.

"Why do you think Jesus forgave you? Did you deserve it?" 

"No." Lena admitted, "I didn't deserve it. He forgave me because He is kind, forgiving, and He loves me."

"That's right," said Poppa, "And now that you have been forgiven, you too must forgive others."

Lena's Bible was on top of her dresser, Poppa picked it up and turned to Ephesians 4:32 and read, "Forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." 

Because Lena loved Jesus and would never want to make him sad. She declared, "If Jesus says I must forgive others, then with God's help, I will do it!" 

When they went downstairs Chris was sitting alone in the living room . . . 

______________ End of sample.

Get all eight stories with activities!


You will need white construction paper, pencil, fish stickers, crayons and or markers, scissors, and possibly glue. On white paper draw a fish bowl, use blue crayon to color water in it. Cut out fish bowl add some fish stickers, if you want to get really creative draw some plants and colorful rocks in the bowl. Use leftover white paper to make a fish bowl cover and glue it on. 

As children color, ask them to think of someone they need to forgive. Prompt them to say a silent prayer to God, asking Him to help them forgive whoever that person or persons might be.

Copyright 1999 Cheryl Mariano

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