New in town and learning to navigate the public transit system, a young man stepped on the bus. He was trying to be as “green” as possible and taking the bus three days a week would not only save gas money and parking charges, it would help the environment. He handed the driver the fare, asked a couple of route questions, took the change and looked for a seat. As he was putting the coins in his pocket before he sat down he discovered the driver had accidentally given him back a quarter too much.
Trying to concentrate on the directions he’d been given, his conscience shoved him as he sat down, “You’d better give the quarter back. It would be wrong to keep it.”
“Oh, it’s only a quarter and the bus company charges too much anyway,” he argued with himself.
“God will trust us with the big things when he sees he can trust us with the little things,” he could hear his Sunday school teacher saying.
“What if the quarter is a gift from God?” he debated.
“Are you kidding me? A quarter won’t even get you a larger coffee. Isn’t your integrity worth more than a quarter?” reason asked.
As he was getting off the bus he handed the quarter to the driver and said, “You gave me a quarter too much change. Here you go.”
The driver smiled as he took the quarter and said, “I gave you too much change to see what you would do. I know you’re the new pastor in my neighborhood and I’ve been looking for a church. Thanks for the quarter and I’ll see you Sunday.”
Don’t you know that young pastor broke out in a cold sweat when he got off the bus! What a clear reminder that someone is always watching … a coworker, the neighbor, people we don’t even know or most importantly our kids. What a challenge to make sure our say and our do are the same.