Bertie Learns to Share
by Belinda van Rensburg
Bobby Baboon lives with his family in the Kalahari Desert. His full name is actually Bob Scrufftail Longtooth van Kogel, but everybody calls him Bobby for short.
Bobby's best friend's name is Bertie. They are two very lively and inquisitive little baboons who are always getting into scrapes.
As everybody knows baboons enjoy eating scorpions, and Bobby and Bertie are no exception. They like nothing better than a scorpion barbecue on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Since today happens to be a Saturday they've decided to go scorpion hunting. Armed with a sack they set off to see what they could find.
It's a hot day and the sun is baking the dry Kalahari desert sand. After walking for a while the two friends decide to stop for a drink of water from their canteens.
“What a lovely day it is, Bertie! I like hot weather, don't you?” Bobby asks. Bertie says he does too, but that he wouldn't like to be stuck in the hot desert without water, though.
After another fifteen minutes' trek in the heat they come upon a rocky outcrop. They put their canteens and sack down and start hunting for scorpions under the rocks. “I've found one!” cries Bertie. “I've found one too!” shouts Bobby. They continue in this manner for a while until they have more than enough scorpions for a nice barbecue.
“Let's rest and have a drink of water,” says Bobby. He opens his canteen and takes a huge gulp – of air! “Oh no! My canteen is empty. All the water must have leaked out somehow.”
“Oh dear, Bobby. Maybe you didn't tighten the cap properly,” answers his friend while he is having a drink of cool water from his own canteen, “hmm, this is good!”
“I'm so thirsty. May I please have a drink of your water, Bertie?”
“I don't think that's a good idea, Bobby. We still have to walk all the way home and I might get thirsty again. If I share my water with you I might not have enough for myself.”
Poor Bobby! He picks up the sack and starts for home. The sun is high in the sky and it seems to be getting hotter with every step he takes. Eventually he can't go any further. He lowers the sack to the ground and tells Bertie to go on without him.
“Don't be silly, Bobby. You can't stay here all by yourself,” says Bertie, “you will die of thirst. I've been thinking it over and I am sorry for having been so selfish. Here is my canteen; drink as much water as you like, my friend.”
“Water has never tasted this good! Thank you so much for sharing it with me. You have saved my life today,” Bobby says gratefully as he hands the empty canteen to his friend.
After walking for a long while they get thirsty again but fortunately they are not far from Bobby's house. They soon see it in the distance. “Look, Bertie! There is my house. We have made it!” They run all the way home where Bobby's mother is waiting with two glasses of ice cold lemonade.
“Thank you for being such a good friend,” Bobby says.
“Aw, it's nothing, Bobby. I am sure you would have done the same for me. I'm just sorry that I was so selfish in the beginning. I know God wants us to love others as we love ourselves, and I was not being loving towards you. Please forgive me.”
"Of course I forgive you, Bertie."
All's well that ends well. Mother invited Bertie's family to the barbecue and both families are having a great time. The two friends have eaten far too much as usual.
“I have learned a lesson today, Bobby,” says Bertie, “I have learned that I enjoy sharing much more than what I enjoy being selfish.”
"And I've learned to be forgiving," answers his best friend.
Matthew 7:12 "In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets. (NASB)
Hebrews 13:1 "Keep on loving each other as brothers." (NIV)