The Little Miss Canvasser of God
I've been there, silently watching her from a distance. She's a skinny little 9-year old girl, who steps out to the world and spread the Word of God...on her very own special way.
YES, I’ve been there, that summer of ’97, following her every where she goes and tracking every little footstep she made on her worn-out sandals. She may have not noticed me at that time being there, looking at a far distance while she drags her heavy backpack outside their house. While other children sleeps until 10 in the morning and play the whole afternoon, she was already eating breakfast by 7AM and preparing her things she would bring on a day’s journey. She was only 9 years old by then.
I would have guessed that she’s already been a week late to register and join this bunch of other people living on the other side of the fence. Her grandmother used to invite these people, (ages around 18-35) on their house to sing praises and pray to the Lord.
These people came from different places to gather together and do one common task: To spread the word of God.
I looked at her, with her curls dangling from her face, and I could feel how much she adored those kinds of people.
She wasn’t aware that I’m there on the windowsill looking at her, seeing her childish smile when she was accepted as a new member, the youngest kid member they ever had.
They were called the Canvassers, Adventist youths selling church and biblical books for the whole summer.
The team leader was called ‘Mark’, how could she forget it, he was the friendliest man she ever met.
Remember the Sabbath Day To Keep It Holy
- YES, I Will Always Remember
"Six days we have to work and play, the seventh is for Jesus". God always remember us. He gave us six days to do our work and to play, let us also give Him this seventh day.
She ran to her house, clutching all the covered magazines and bible stories on her small skinny arms. She put them on her bed and silently stroking every end of this precious thing.
I could hear that she wished that if she only had enough money, she would buy lots of these books. She would buy all the Bible Stories and the colouring books too.
Her mom gave her a ‘clear book’; it’s like an open envelope in which you could put all your ads, copies and list of all the titles of magazines/books you have in stock and let people choose from the arrays of list.
I could feel that she wasn’t ready for this, travelling all alone with the heavy backpack full of books and magazines, entering one house and another. But her face shows determination. So I just followed her quietly on her great summer adventure.
I was afraid that she might get lost or she might be kidnapped (there are several cases of kidnappings on her town).
I just silently prayed that God will give me enough strength to do His will and take care of this little girl who only had the intentions to let the world know of her Saviour.
I was waiting for her outside her house one day, in her usual blouse and skirt and a sandal, the sun was terribly hot. I would have stayed and play or read a book but I saw her, that little girl again, ready to go into an open world.
She knocked on every door she could find and open her backpack for them to see the books.
While some others say NO to this sweet young child standing outside their door, there were also a lot of people who say YES to her and ordered a copy of her magazine and books.
My heart goes to this little one; she was so young to have that job. Imagine her, pulling the books from her backpack, explaining to a mother, a father or a brother/sister what brings her to their home at this time of summer season.
I can’t forget what she said to an older lady living in a beautiful big house, when they asked why they should buy a book from her.
She said in her very sweet gentle voice, “I’ve been dreaming of these books my whole life, but we don’t have enough money to buy one.So I go out and let other people discover Jesus.”
She pulled the Bible Stories books and said, “This one ma’am, I love the story very much, I’ve read it on a Bible, but it’s pretty much nicer if you could read the story with all those colourful illustrations. You could give this as a gift to your kids.”
The lady said, “I’m sorry, but my kids wouldn’t read these books. Next time.” She signals the girl that she is free now to go but the girl pulled another book, a lighter one.
“But maybe you could give this one to them.” She handed her the colouring book. I turned my head and left the house. I’d better wait for her outside.
I saw the cheery smile again on her face when she left that big house. Oh well, maybe that lady after all did buy a book.
I shared her pains every single day, walking miles and miles under the heat of the scorching sun. She did not want to lose a penny for the transportation because she thought she might miss a house.
She will stopped from time to time to rest and eat whatever her mom packed for her. I could have given her more than that, but you see I can’t let her see me; I can’t let her know that I’ve been there all along.
Every weekend they would gather at the house of ‘Mark’ and calculate their commissions for a week’s sales. Her first weeks didn’t get so well, and her mom would say it’s okay to quit. But she said she enjoyed doing it and aside from the money, she could get a chance to share what she knew about her church and her God.
I think she was so crazy about what she was doing.
When she got her first commission, she gave it to her mom. My tears fell down on my eyes, what an adorable child she was, having all those tiring moments to earn a penny.
But her mom said, she could save it and buy the things she loves or likes. I silently hid on a curtain while she put all the money into her little treasure chest.
Summer was almost ending and ‘Mark’ was preparing all the gifts for the top-earners. He will award it on Saturday at church during their farewell speeches to the fellow brethren who make this canvassing all worth the time and energy.
The little girl sits quietly all by herself at the end of the bench, not expecting for any gifts. She was just happy to be a part of the team for one whole summer before going back to school. She would share all her experiences to her friends. I sat beside her but she didn’t look up. When at last, she heard her name being on the top five! She was so surprised she couldn’t speak a word.
“Go on, get your gift, you really deserved it.” I said to her. She just nod and walked away. There was applause and everybody congratulating their youngest member being one of the top-earner. ‘Mark’ hugged her and said he wishes her well and maybe, she could join again the team someday. I saw her give ‘Mark’ numbers of folded stationeries and asked for a favour if he could give it to the persons who had names on each folded paper. Last night I saw her doing these goodbye letters and feeling every word she was saying.
That same Saturday afternoon was my last day of ‘stalking’ this little girl. I was going to say goodbye too to her, but maybe I’d better not. She just lost a bunch of nice people on the other side of the fence and maybe it’s too much if she’ll lose me too.
The window on her bedroom was open and I was just on time to peep and see that she was quietly and silently wrapping her ‘deserved’ gift on a newspaper. Along with it were a few hundred bills and coins she had saved all summer.
She wrote, “To Mom.” Then she looked at the cheap chocolates she bought from the store.
She placed the ‘gift’ on her mom’s clothes drawer and run away to find her grandma to give her the chocolates.
I walked away teary eyed for what I’ve just witness on that summer of ’97. God placed me as her guardian to protect her everyday so that no harm could come to this girl who wants to spread the love of God.
She is here today, writing this story and saying “May God Bless Us All..."
© 2012 Mycee. All Rights Reserved.
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