Many years ago Tad and his father and mother lived on a lonely island.
All around were rough seas and dangerous rocks. They lived in a
tiny cottage next to the lighthouse. His father was the lighthouse
keeper and had to make sure the great light shone out each night to warn
ships to keep well away from the rocks.
One day Tad's father fell ill. As he lay sick and tossing on his bed
with a high fever, a storm blew up. The wind blew and heavy rain
fell. "The storm is getting worse," said Mother as the wind blew
even harder and whistled around their house. It soon grew dark as
thick clouds filled the sky.
The Light's Out!
Tad looked out of the window and saw tremendous waves lashing the rocks
around the lighthouse. His mother joined him and as she peered
out, she noticed that the lighthouse lamp was out. Just then she
exclaimed, "Isn't that a ship's horn?" Tad listened for a moment
and replied excitedly, "Yes, it is, and it seems to be close inshore
near those jagged rocks!"
His mother looked worried and said, "Quick, go and check on your father.
He must go and check the light! Tad ran to the bedroom and
then shouted, "It's no use, Mother, Father is too sick!"
Who will Go?
His mother thought for a moment. If she went to turn on the light,
who would look after the sick man? "You will have to go and light
the lamp," she decided, "I must look after your father."
Tad looked scared, "But, there are so many stairs to climb and you know
I'm afraid of heights!" His mother looked at her small boy and
they both were startled when a loud blast came from the ship's horn!
"Son," she cried, "You must run! If we delay any longer that ship
will be wrecked on the rocks!" Tad reluctantly grabbed his
raincoat and ran to the door. He struggled to push it open
against the wind. Outside he could see nothing as he battled
against the fierce wind and had to hold onto rocks as it threatened to
blow him off his feet.
Lightning flashed and thunder crashed all around him, blinding him with
its brilliant light. He heard the horn sound again and struggled
on toward the lighthouse as fast as he could go. "I must get
there in time, Lord," he whispered, "Or many people will die in those
At last he came to the lighthouse and swung open the door. "Now I
must climb all two hundred and fifty stairs to top!" he shouted, "Please
God, help me climb safely and not be scared." He felt his way up
the curving metal stairs and held tightly onto the guide rope as he
climbed higher and higher. He dared not look down to the floor far
below him. "If I slip," he thought, "I will fall all the way
Eventually he came to the trapdoor that led onto the lamp platform.
He crawled out and found himself slipping! He cried out in fear as
he slid towards the edge of the platform, but at the last second he was
able to grab onto the guard rail around the platform! He felt faint
and held on with all his strength. "Whew!" he shouted, "I was
nearly a gonna!"
Keeper of the Lamp:
Tad pulled himself upright and gasped, "I must clean the dirty lens of the
lamp." He polished the glass with his shirt and then primed the
lamp with paraffin and lit the wick. At last the flame flared up
and his heart stopped thumping as the light beam shone out over the wild
He started to turn the handle to revolve the light - but it was hard work.
The handle was stiff and it was hard to turn because he was so
small. As the light slowly revolved, he saw the faint outline of a
ship far below. It was dangerously close to the jagged rocks!
He held his breath and just when he thought the ship would strike the rocks,
it made a violent turn away from the rocks - they were safe! He
wiped away the sweat from his brow and grimly carried on turning the
handle. It was going to be a long night!
"Please God help me, I'm so tired!" he cried after two hours of heavy work.
It needed all his strength just to keep the lamp turning. But,
he faithfully stayed the whole night turning the light until at last it
was the dawn. As it grew brighter, the storm died away and all was
The Storm's Over!
Some time later, footsteps sounded below and came up the stairs. His
mother reached the top and found her exhausted son fast asleep on the
platform. "Son," she called shaking him by the shoulder, "Your
father has woken up and is much better!" She helped a very tired
small boy down the steps and guided him to his bedroom. She lifted
him onto the bed and covered him with a blanket. And there he lay
fast asleep until nightfall.
That night after a huge supper, Tad climbed up the steps again. He was
no longer afraid of the height! God had helped him, and that night
he thanked God as he turned the handle of the light. And you know,
he proudly kept the lighthouse going until his father recovered!
Reward for Bravery:
Some months later he was excited when a company ship drew near and anchored
just offshore. The sailors let down a boat and held it alongside
the ship as two men were lowered into it. Soon the sailors were
rowing strongly towards the island. They came alongside the landing
steps and the two men stepped out. Tad's father shouted, "Come here,
Tad. It's the managers from the shipping company!"
They greeted the men as they climbed ashore. "Where's the young man
who prevented the shipwreck?" asked the first man. "Here he is,"
said Tad's father with a great big smile as he pushed his small son
forward. "Son," said the second manager, "We are proud of you, and
we have a special award for you!" Tad's eyes gleamed as they pinned
a medal onto his chest for his bravery.
Keeper of the Light!
The medal was gold and it shone in the sunlight. It had a picture of
a lighthouse and the words, "Keeper of the Light" on it. He was so
proud and if you ever visited that island, he would show it to you.
And then he would tell you the story of how God helped him to save a great
ship and conquer his fear of heights. He would run up the two
hundred and fifty steps and point to the handle that turned the great
Little Tad learnt to trust God when he needed help to climb those many
steps to the top of the lighthouse. He also needed to be brave when
his father was so ill. God helped him find the strength to turn the
heavy lamp all night. Through these he overcame his fear of heights.
God wants to help each one of His children overcome all their fears as well.
Are you willing to let God help you get rid of those fears?
Let's say a prayer and ask God to take away all your fears. He will,
and you can ask God to let you feel His love whenever you start to feel