While hiking with Thistle on Saturday I walked up on, of all things, a ten-dollar bill. There it was, folded in half and soggy in the middle of the trail. I picked it up, scraped dirt off and tucked it in my pocket.
And then I got to thinking about how my reaction to finding $10 has changed over the years.
- When I was a kid, finding such a huge amount of money would have been a treasure trove of possibility–candy, toys, soda–I would have been RICH.
- When I was a teen I probably would have added it to my allowance to buy clothes or shoes.
- When I was in college it would have been gas and/or food money.
- And even as a young adult I probably would have seen it as lunch out with friends.
But now, as a forty-something adult with a good job and all my needs pretty well met, I dried the bill out and dropped it in the Easter Sunday collection plate. And I felt noble for just an instant. But here’s what struck me about it:
That list of things I would do with an extra $10 at any point in my life? They’re all selfish. Even the one about giving the money away. Buying candy at 10, shoes at 16, gas at 21, and lunch at 26 would have given me pleasure. As did giving money away at 42.
I think there’s no such thing as an unselfish act–only selfish acts that fit into God’s will. I guess I’ll keep working on that.