In his book MAKING TODAY COUNT FOR ETERNITY, author Kent Crockett recounts the story of a hardware store manager who wanted to test the integrity and character of prospective employees. He sent one young man up to the attic to pick through a large box of old nails and screws, separating useable from the refuse. The attic was stifling hot:
The young man spent hours looking through the box, separating usable nails and screws from things that should be thrown away. When he picked up one of the last items in the box, he noticed a twenty-dollar bill lying on the bottom. He grabbed the bill, raced downstairs, and said, "ooh, Mr Peters! Look what I found in the box--twenty dollars!" Then he handed the money to the boss. Mr. Peters … knew he could trust the boy to work in his store. ...
He wanted to see if the boy would complete the job and keep a good attitude, even though he didn't understand why he was doing seemingly useless work. He had also planted a twenty-dollar bill at the bottom of the box to test his employee's honesty. If the boy didn't report finding the money, how could Mr. Peters trust him with the cash register? And by finishing the job in the hot attic and giving the money to his boss rather than pocketing it, he proved that he was both faithful and honest. Years later, when Mr. Peters retired, he turned his business over to the young man to manage.
Kent Crockett graduated from Texas A&M University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and is the senior pastor of the Church of Living Water in Prattville, Alabama. He is the author of The 911 Handbook, Making Today Count for Eternity, and I Once Was Blind but Now I Squint, and has been published in a number of Christian magazines.
Did you know that life on earth is also a test? All our earthly responsibilities--even the ones that seem insignificant--are in the old juke box in the attic. God is watching us to see if we will faithfully sort through life's experiences, keeping the good, throwing out the junk, exhibiting a positive attitude when we don't understand, and finishing our work. If we prove ourselves to be good and faithful during our early test, God will grant us far greater duties in the next life.
"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'" (Matthew 25:21).