As I’m recovering from having skin cancer surgery which has brought me a little discomfort with being able to walk or get in and out of my van, I’m more upset with something else. I understand that temptation to do crazy stuff is around everyone all of the time. I was raised to have respect for other people’s property. Yet, there seems to be a trend that when you find something that is either been lost or left out accidently it becomes fair game for everyone.
I attempt to dissuade the notion that finder’s keepers and loser’s weepers is not the real law of the land! I had been told that the golden rule, do unto others as you would have them do unto you, should be that guiding light in life. I sat and listened to one of my young men share about how he left his laptop at a close friend’s house. He would say these guys were like family. He had texted his friend and siblings to say please watch out for my laptop. You have to understand that this laptop is this guy’s life and bread and butter. Yet, it was obvious that the sister, older with kids, had taken it and actually sold it or pawned it.
I know that my friend is a little scattered when it comes to remembering most things so it isn’t unusual for him to leave most things behind. He was hurt because his friends acted like they didn’t have anything to do with his laptop being sold even though they knew she was going to do it and didn’t do anything to stop her from selling it. Some times the hard lessons in life help us grow up faster and realize that many of our friends really aren’t our friends.
We had done a guy’s group last night that finished with playing basketball. I was out of it because of having surgery so I had one of my interns oversee everything. This morning when I took my dogs for our usual morning outing that finishes with going to Starbucks I realized that the basketballs were in the back of the truck bed. I had gone back inside to do a couple of things before emptying out the truck. I couldn’t believe that both of these balls were gone. Yes, someone walking by my house actually lifted my basketballs on their way to school.
Trust me I’m not going to search the neighborhood or make any accusations about who might have taken them. Yet, my friend should do something that sends a message to his friend’s sister who stole his laptop. The reality is that nothing will happen to the basketball thief or the laptop thief. I’ll easily replace the two b-balls but my friend will go without for probably a year.
So what has happened to our society where no one is trustworthy any longer? I have heard too many reports from the Michael Brown situation to know that some of the law enforcement authorities did step across the line with their power. Much like a significant amount of locals that could have cared less about the shooting went out with the protesters to loot and cause trouble. It would be so easy from these situations to quickly identify the culprits in these circumstances and make generalizations that are totally not true.
The lesson I’m learning is that I have to be wiser in my choice as to whom I trust with my stuff! Yes, I can’t leave my wallet or iPhone out if I’m around anyone regardless of how close they are to me. It is too much temptation for someone to see money lying around and not take spare change or some of the dollar bills. I recently read a post on LinkedIn by a young man who had grown up in the hood with a single mom and brothers. He was a very gifted student who became a teacher that went back to his home turf to teach. Yet, after a very short time got upset with his class because of their unwillingness to listen, learn and respect him. So he walked out and just quit. His article ultimately places the blame for some of the mess in his neighborhood on himself for not trying harder and sticking around.
So to rephrase my title it should have said, “I Can’t Believe That I Left My Stuff Out!” Ultimately it is my responsibility to pick up the basketballs last night. Much like my friend should never have left his prized possession at his friend’s house, especially knowing that it became a real temptation. It is so important to still pursue the right path for living and not allow these incidents to put you on the path of revenge. As I say so often two wrongs never becomes a right!