Johnny, Sally, and Grandma’s Duck

By Patrick Hawthorne


Last week I heard this story for the first time.  Some say it is a story of forgiveness.  While it does speak of forgiveness, to me it is more of an illustration of how we – born-again Christian’s –  will allow the devil a foot hold in our lives to keep us in bondage not only to our past but to him in the present.


A little boy visiting his grandparents was given his first slingshot.  He practiced in the woods, but he could never hit his target.  As he came back to Grandma’s back yard, he spied her pet duck.  On an impulse he took aim and let fly.  The stone hit, and the duck fell dead.

The boy panicked.  Desperately he hid the dead duck in the wood pile, only to look up and see his sister watching.  Sally had seen it all, but she said nothing.

After lunch that day, Grandma said, “Sally, let’s wash the dishes.”  But Sally said, “Johnny told me he wanted to help in the kitchen today.  Didn’t you Johnny?”  And she whispered to him, “Remember the duck!”  So Johnny did the dishes.

Later, Grandpa asked if the children wanted to go fishing.  Grandma said, “I’m sorry, but I need Sally to help me make supper.”  Sally smiled and said, “That’s all taken care of.  Johnny wants to do it.”  Again she whispered, “Remember the duck.”  Johnny stayed while Sally went fishing.

After several days of Johnny doing both his chores and Sally’s, finally he couldn’t stand it.  He confessed to Grandma that he’d killed the duck.

“I know, Johnny,” she said, giving him a hug.  “I was standing at the window and saw the whole thing.  Because I love you, I forgave you.  But I wondered how long you would let Sally make a slave of you.”

– Author Unknown


If you have been struggling with condemnation, first know that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).  If you sin, understand that Forgiveness (Heavenly Father) was standing at the window and saw the whole thing.  However, because He loves you so much, He forgave you.  Now, the question remains… “How long are you going to let the devil make a slave of you?”  Be blessed.

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Posted in Christian, story
6 comments on “Johnny, Sally, and Grandma’s Duck
  1. I clicked on the “Like” tab, only because there isn’t a “LOVE”!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Well said, Patrick. I love that duck story. Great illustration.

    Something I like in the tale of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, they get thrown into the furnace, but the only thing that gets burned up are the ties that bind them. Sometimes what feels like being in the hot seat, is actually just the Lord setting us free from bondage. We people can take a little problem and make it so much bigger than it needs to be.

    Of course, being thrown into a furnace is not a little problem, but except for that extreme example,most of our bondages are somewhat self inflicted and can be fixed by cooperating with the Lord.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wally Fry says:

    Amen to this, Patrick

    Liked by 2 people

  4. SLIMJIM says:

    Wow that is a powerful illustration thank you for sharing it Patrick

    Liked by 1 person

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