Daily D – Deuteronomy 22:1 & Luke 16:12
If you see your neighbor’s ox or sheep or goat wandering away, don’t ignore your responsibility. Take it back to its owner. DEUTERONOMY 22:1 (NLT)
“And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own?” Luke 16:12 (NLT)
Small behaviors predict bigger issues.
We needed to buy a car. We did not want to buy a new one. New cars lose significant value the moment the papers are signed, keys are handed over, and you drive off the lot. Buying a nearly-new used car is almost always a better value proposition than buying new for this reason.
In our search for the right car, we visited a dealer for one of the major rental car companies and considered one of their retired fleet vehicles. The cars were well maintained and were still under warranty. We were leaning in the direction of purchasing one of these cars. When I talked about this decision with a friend, he said, “I know how you take care of a rental car, and I know how other people take care of rental cars. Other people do not take care of them the way you do.”
He indicated that cars like the ones we were considering might have been abused a bit by adventurous drivers. We did not buy one of those cars.
How do you drive a rental car?
God tells us to live responsible lives. A responsible life is a life of stewardship. It recognizes that all things are given to us from God as a trust. We are to take good care of what he entrusts to us. We are to treat other people’s things in the same manner. We are to practice the same level of responsibility with other people’s things as we do our own.
Trustworthy and responsible behavior make community life possible. How we handle little things is a good predictor to our neighbors of how we will handle bigger things. One of our neighbors has a key to our house. Another neighbor will never have a key to anything of ours. She does not treat other people’s property the way she treats her own. She seems to think she has at least an equal say in every decision about other people’s property. She has altered construction activity at other people’s houses while the owners were away because she did not like the way things were being done. This is not a person I trust to feed my dogs when I am detained.
Live responsibly. Live a life others trust. Take care of other people’s property the way you wish they would take care of yours. And by all means, take good care of your rental car.
Small behaviors indicate bigger values.
I will treat other people’s property the way I want them to treat mine.
Our Father, empower me to live a trustworthy life. Make me dependable. Make me the kind of man others can trust without fear or concern in any and every circumstance. Amen.
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Jonah 4:2, 3 So he complained to the Lord about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, Lord? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. Just kill me now, Lord! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.”
Joel 2:12, 13 That is why the Lord says, “Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.”
Hosea 14:8, 9 “O Israel, stay away from idols! I am the one who answers your prayers and cares for you. I am like a tree that is always green; all your fruit comes from me.” Let those who are wise understand these things. Let those with discernment listen carefully. The paths of the Lord are true and right, and righteous people live by walking in them. But in those paths sinners stumble and fall.”