Psalm 18:26 says, “To the pure you show yourself pure, but to the devious you show yourself shrewd.”
Brother Xu, an elderly Christian, got up really early one Monday. After breakfast, Xu put on a pair of skinny trousers he had not worn for a long time.
Intending to purchase a SIM card in town, he wanted to look decent while out running errands.
He drove a new electric scooter downtown, but his vehicle had to stop on the sidewalk as roads outside the telecommunications office were under construction. Knowing that it was illegal to park there, he comforted himself that many vehicles had been left on the pavement and he would return soon. Another reason he parked there was because it seemed safe to park a new scooter in a place where there were many people walking back and forth.
Looking around, he realized a woman in charge of an empty grocery stand was staring at him in a bored manner. This reassured him that his scooter would be safe. However, the moment he walked out of the office he panicked because his new scooter was missing.
He searched for a long time, but failed to find anything. Thinking that his vehicle must be stolen, he hurried to the store. The idle proprietress told him that after he went in the office, all of the illegally parked vehicles, including his, were taken away by city security.
He found his scooter under a bridge and assumed that he would need to pay a fine. Since he didn’t know how much fine would be, he began to pray. Next, he walked toward the law enforcement office but suddenly halted at the door. Since he had seven hundred yuan in his jacket pocket, he thought his fine might be larger if the police would see how much money he had. He decided to put 600 into the back pocket of his trousers and keep 100 in his jacket pocket.
Walking into the office, he explained the situation to the police, and they asked him to show his scooter registration. Since he had not brought it with him, Xu was not permitted to drive his scooter back home, so he walked a long distance to the shop where he bought his vehicle. When he returned with proof that the scooter was his, he was told to pay a fine of just 50 yuan, much lower than he expected.
After everything was taken care of, he returned home. When he went to pull the money out of his back pocket, he found that there was nothing there, even though there was no hole in his pocket. At that time a verse popped into his head: Psalm 18:26 - “To the pure you show yourself pure, but to the devious you show yourself shrewd.” Realizing that his “cleverness” had brought a loss to himself, he regretted what he had done, but he couldn’t find the money.
Kneeling down, he repented before God. His petty tricks jeopardized the image of Christians, so he dedicated himself to correct his bad habits and to be a pure and honest person without “cleverness.”
Six hundred yuan dropped from his trousers onto the ground the instant he stood up, causing his eyes to become moist.
“God, we often conduct ourselves according to the ‘petty tricks’ in our minds, but your mercy and faithfulness never leave us,” he said.
(The original article is published by Gospel Times.)
- Translated by Karen Luo