This afternoon the checkout lady at the Dollar Store, who appeared to be very close to seventy, was being rudely ordered around by another employee who was all of seventeen. With tears welling up in her eyes the elderly lady attempted to help me. The extent of her mental state evidenced itself when her trembling hands gave me an extra five dollar bill in my change. My dilemma was to further upset her by pointing out her error or take the easy way out and pocket the extra five and say thank you. Or was I merely justifying an attempt to keep the five? The human heart is a deceitful thing and works its very best havoc on its owner. The most difficult person to know is the one we see in the mirror.
For over seventy years I have been trying to know me. But like Paul in Romans 7, I regularly do things that disappoint me. “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”
I don’t think it was about an extra five dollars. I am not a rich man, but really five dollars? What would a man give in exchange for his soul? Five dollars? That’s trading your soul for one large extra thick chocolate malt! But what if it were for five million dollars? Then I would rationalize how much good I could do for my church. I could make quite an impressive list of good deeds after I took an around the world trip with my wife.
So what did I do? If I tell you what and why I would most likely be trying to assuage my conscience.
Written by Roger Bothwell on June 11, 2015
Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574