Last night, I braved the city streets (a whole two blocks of city streets) and headed to an English pub called the London Bridge. It was quite interesting. When you enter the place, the decor generally resembles an English pub. They had a mix of good music (Radiohead, Beck, Wilco, Pavement) and bad music (Three Doors Down, Slipknot, NOFX). The place was fairly empty…like the Heorot on a Tuesday afternoon. There were a couple of older guys at the bar and a group of college-age kids at the pool table.
I sat down to enjoy a couple of pints and read a few chapter of the Hoffman book, “Revolution for the Hell of It.”
As I finished by last drop of Guinness, I approached the bar to settle my tab. The bartendercame over with a receipt, a credit card, and a pen. The only problem…I had not given him a credit card. Now, I had a couple of choices here…1) I sign the receipt and let someone else pay for my pints…2) I inform the bartender of the mistake.
Being the truly noble person that I am (and humble too), I let the bartender know that I didn’t have a credit card on my tab. He quickly said, “Oh man, you’re right! Sorry about that. Just let me cancel this out really quickly.”
As I settled my bill, the bartender looked at me and said, “Hey, thanks for being honest.” I thanked him and put my book in my backpack.
As I turned to exit, one of the guys at the bar said, “The powers of karma will bless you because one good turn deserves another!” My response, “Oh, thanks.”
I hadn’t really thought of this simple act of honesty as a “good turn.” And, while I don’t believe in karma, per se, I do believe that God blesses us when we are faithful.
Faithful obedience is what this journey is all about. Each day, we are presented with opportunities to “do the right thing.” No matter how big or how small, we are called to make the right choices. Sometimes we get it right…sometimes we don’t. And, it’s when we don’t get it right that following Christ is better than following karma. When we fail to get it right, Jesus steps in and offers forgiveness. The principle of karma would say that when we don’t get it right, bad things will come our way. I think I like forgiveness better than that!