Tuesday 28 October 2014

Loving Truth and Peace--11

LTP 24/7
And so to make a short story shorter, 
hence with no embellishments...or excuses....

A few months ago I went to the local car wreck place, not too far from one of the French borders with Switzerland. I wanted to find some emblems that were on Rovers--a British car whose emblem is a Viking long ship. Tres cool! We had a Rover for over 15 years and so they are very special to me. And since I loved to study Norse mythology as a kid, the emblem of a Viking long ship was particularly meaningful (and enticing).

So I went to the car wreck place and asked the attendant if I could look around and collect some Rover emblems. He said ok and so off I went, searching among the 300 or so cars. I found several Rovers here and there and easily pried off about 10 emblems with a simple flick of a screwdriver. One by one I popped them into my shirt pocket (I guess unconsciously placing them close to my heart). I was elated!

After about 15 minutes of successful scavenging, I headed back to the attendant, let him know I found some (intentionally not telling him how many), and asked how much I should pay. Ten Euros is fine he said. I got even more excited because this seemed like such a really good deal. And so I gave him 10 Euros and drove off happy to have gotten so many gems at such a cheap price.

After about a minute driving in the car though, I became aware of a growing sense of discomfort, suggesting that something was not exactly right. The thought occurred to me that maybe it really was not so "ok-ish" to have withheld from the attendant the fuller story about how many emblems I actually had. 

Then started a discussion inside my head that this matter or "whatever" really did not matter: no one wanted the emblems, the attendant could have asked more questions, 10 Euros is kind of a lot of money for old plastic things,...etc.  The inner discussion went on and on, well, for about 20 seconds...and then suddenly, I just turned the car around and went back to the local car wreck place, found the attendant, and explained to him that I actually got a lot of the Rover emblems from various cars. I asked if it was still 10 Euros and he said that's ok. And we both smiled.

I drove off not quite so happy as the first time a few minutes earlier, yet with my conscience cleared and perhaps a bit more aware of how easy it is to deceive myself. The only inner voices I had to fend off now were those that started to congratulate me on what an exemplary moral person I was.... 

So in retrospect, it reminds me...
That if I am faithful in the little things I will likely be more faithful in the big things.
That it is really good to acknowledge mistakes...and sins (missing the moral mark).
And that loving truth and peace is a 24/7 challenge and a 24/7 commitment. 

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