Did you know that there is something even more valuable than silver or gold? The Bible tells us about it in the Book of Proverbs.
“Choose a good reputation over great riches; being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold.” (Proverbs 22:1)
A good reputation is better than lots of money! Justin learned that the hard way. One summer Justin decided that he wanted to make some money. He was good at mowing lawns, pulling weeds and sweeping sidewalks. So he decided to make a business out of it. He made some nice colorful flyers, printed off a small stack and headed out into the neighborhood.
Justin left a flyer on each of his neighbors’ front steps. Around the corner, at the end of his court, Justin could see a group of boys gathered—older boys mostly, and they were standing in a circle. Justin continued handing out his flyers house by house. He could hear the group of boys now. “You’re a crybaby!” one yelled. “Just let us use your bike, crybaby!”
The rest of the boys laughed and laughed. Justin walked over to see what was going on. Inside the ring of boys, a younger boy was crying.
Justin felt a lump rise in his throat as he watched the boy crying and clinging to what looked like a brand-new bike—it was still shiny. “Stay away from me!” the young boy hollered, tears running down his face.
Justin wasn’t sure what to do, and just then a hand tapped his shoulder. Justin turned to see his neighbor, Mr. Henry, with one of the flyers in his hand. “Justin—” Mr. Henry started to say, and then he stopped.
He watched the older boys taunting and figured out right away what was going on. “You boys move along,” he shouted. The boys scattered in every direction and the picked-on boy quickly pedaled away.
Mr. Henry looked down at Justin’s colorful flyer. Then he handed it to Justin and said, “Son, I came out here to offer you a job cutting my grass. But I just wouldn’t feel right supporting a boy who was part of what went on here. Sorry, son.”
Justin was too embarrassed to know what to say. He learned right then and there that his good reputation—or what his neighbors thought of him—was more valuable to him than almost anything.
Fortunately, later on, Justin was able to talk to Mr. Henry and explain that he hadn’t been involved in the bullying. Mr. Henry hired him once he realized what had happened.
A good reputation is worth more than gold or silver. Keep that in mind when you make choices about what to do and say each day. Follow God’s principles and you’ll always make it a wonderful new day—a new day with Jesus!
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