The Gift Card

Reading for Today: Proverb Chapter 25

Gold Nugget
Verse 8: “Do not go hastily to court; for what will you do in the end, when your neighbor has put you to shame?”
One year after Christmas, my daughter wanted to make a purchase online, but couldn’t with one of her gift cards. She asked me to make the purchase of $100.00 online with my credit card and she would give me the $100.00 gift card. A few days after purchasing her item online, I went to Wal-Mart and decided to use my $100.00 gift card to purchase about $50 dollars’ worth of items. I was disturbed to find that the card was declined. Later, I tried again to make another purchase elsewhere, hoping that Wal-Mart was having an issue that day. Again, card declined. Finally, I called the 1-800 number on the back of the card and found it had a balance of thirty-something dollars. At that point I told my daughter that in her Christmas spending frenzy, she must have swiped it somewhere and forgot. She insisted she hadn’t, but I knew better. Although she thought she was correct, a 14 year old girl and a gift card do not always provide the best mixture for wise decisions and financial accountability. Being judge and jury, I sentenced her to several free house cleanings for the sixty-something dollar balance. She insisted that she would go online and find what had gone wrong. I knew if she actually went online and looked at the transaction history, she would be reminded of her purchase. A few weeks went by and I got a phone call from her letting me know that she had looked online and found that someone had evidentially spent sixty-something dollars at Academy. I challenged her to remember what she bought from Academy, but she insisted she never spent a dime there. After getting off the phone, I wondered how she could forget spending sixty-something dollars at Academy… sixty-something dollars at Academy… sixty-something dollars at Academy… uh, oh. Oh, my… sixty-something dollars is how much I spent on a paintball mask… at… Academy! All of a sudden, I remembered standing in line at Academy. It was clear… crystal clear. A week after Christmas, Academy’s computers were down and wouldn’t take regular credit cards. I was fortunate to be able to make my purchase though, because I had … a $100.00 gift card… Oh, yes. I remember it clearly now. Then I was faced with the embarrassing task of admitting I was wrong and had falsely accused her. There aren’t many situations that will cause more shame and embarrassment than when we falsely accuse someone. Unfortunately, I didn’t exercise the wisdom in today’s “gold nugget” that says, “Do not go hastily to court; for what will you do in the end, when your neighbor has put you to shame?”

Lord, sometimes we are so convinced of our position and innocence that we will not truly consider someone else’s innocence. Help us to be more honest with ourselves and consider that we could possibly be at fault. Amen

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