June 7, 2018
Volume 22, Number 21
Kal Patel was holding in his hand a $1 million lottery ticket. There was no doubt about it; he had run the numbers several times. Later he handed the ticket (and the million dollars) to another person.
Patel’s parents own the Pit Stop convenience store in Salina, Kansas. He was not the clerk on duty when a customer stopped by to check three tickets. Two of the tickets proved to not be winners, and the customer accidentally left the third on the counter and walked out. That’s when the discovery was made that this was a winning ticket.
Kal was told about the ticket, and from the description given him by the clerk he went out to find the customer. He eventually did find the man, who began shaking when Kal told him the value of the ticket he left on the counter. The man told Kal it restored his faith in humanity for him to do what he did.
An old saying I heard as a child comes to mind: “Finders keepers, losers weepers”. It meant that if I found a $10 bill, and later heard you talking about losing $10, I was under no obligation to tell you of my find. You should have taken better care of your money.
God expected better things of His people Israel. In Exodus 23:4 Moses gave this command: “If you meet your enemy’s ox or donkey going astray, you shall surely bring it back to him again.” Don’t miss the detail Moses stated: this lost animal belongs to an enemy! Yet God expected them to restore it in good faith. (As an added bonus it would also be a giant step toward resolving the animosity between them.)
The principle is repeated in Deuteronomy 22:1,2: “You shall not see your brother’s ox or his sheep going astray, and hide yourself from them; you shall certainly bring them back to your brother. And if your brother is not near you, or if you do not know him, then you shall bring it to your own house, and it shall remain with you until your brother seeks it; then you shall restore it to him.”
Paul was once in charge of delivering a considerable amount of money to the apostles in Jerusalem. He had riches within his grasp! But here is how he viewed his responsibility: “… avoiding this: that anyone should blame us in this lavish gift which is administered by us – providing honorable things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men” (2 Corinthians 8:20,21).
If you look, you’ll often find shortcuts to wealth (not all of them legal). But there’s a larger question to consider: Will I be a faithful servant of Christ by taking this shortcut? Will it lead to someone else’s hurt? Our aim should be to provide “for honest things” (2 Corinthians 8:21, KJV). Spiritual riches are always better than worldly riches!
Come to the light God offers! Study His word, the Bible. Worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24). Get in touch with us if you’d like to discuss these ideas further.
Copyright, 2018, Timothy D. Hall. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from the New King James Version (Copyright, 1990, Thomas Nelson, Inc.).
“LightGrams” is produced by the Central Church of Christ, 2722 Oakland Avenue, Johnson City, Tennessee, 37601, and is written by Tim Hall, minister. It is sent free of charge every Thursday to all who request it. To subscribe or to receive more information, write to “Tim@GraceMine.org” (our E-mail address), to the U.S. mail address above, or call (423) 282-1571.
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