Our great God asks us to share with people cheerfully. What does it mean to be cheerful? God gave us an example of that. Gopher tortoises share without grumbling or fighting. If someone needs to play with a toy we have, we should not grumble or fight about it, but we can smile and be happy to share.

 

What is a gopher tortoise? It is a turtle that lives on land that is dry and sandy with some trees. God made the first gopher tortoises on Day Six of Creation Week. This is the same day that God made other reptiles like snakes and dinosaurs. Gopher tortoises grow to about 12 inches long. They like to eat plants such as apples, berries, cactus, grass, and watermelon.

 

When a gopher tortoise is not eating or sitting in the sunshine, he likes to go home. His home is a burrow that he makes in the ground. He digs a deep and long tunnel with rooms on the sides. His burrow is used by other animals who need a place to hide for awhile. The gopher tortoise does not complain but leaves room for other animals to share his home. Some of the animals he shares with are ants, beetles, flies, spiders, scorpions, frogs, lizards, snakes, small owls, armadillos, mice, opossums, rabbits, and skunks.

 

In Romans 12:13, God tells us to “Share with God’s people who are in need.” In verse 20, He tells us to share with other people, even our enemies, if they need food or water. And II Corinthians 9:7 tells us that “God loves a cheerful giver.” If a gopher tortoise can share cheerfully with a spider or a skunk, can you cheerfully share your toys or books or extra candy with someone?

 

-MaryAnn Stuart