One morning, Xiaomin was on her way to work. Walking along the busy and crowded street, she was laden with anxiety. Some clothes on sale in the clothing store where she worked had somehow been stolen and she was being held responsible. She smoothed her hair, took a deep breath and made up her mind to try her best sell more clothes. That way, she could get more commission that month, and get the cost of losing the clothes back. As she thought about this, she quickened her pace and headed to the clothes store.
Xiaomin gently pushed the glass door open and saw that the colorful clothes that hung in the store looked extremely beautiful in the light. Then she walked to the wardrobe, put on a new coat and looked in the mirror. Immediately, she was captivated by how she looked and for a while felt elated.
Just then, two middle-aged women came in. Xiaomin greeted them warmly. From their accent she learned that they were not locals. She thought: “It’s easy to earn money from strangers. I’ll make a killing off these two.” With this in mind, Xiaomin came up at once with a sweet smile and said, “Madam, shopping is tiring isn’t it? Have a rest here and see if there is anything you like.” One of the customers said, “We’re just looking, thank you.” Whenever they picked a garment, Xiaomin was by their side, patiently saying things like, “Madam, I think this piece of clothing suits you very well. You will look elegant in it. And it’s a limited edition! Our clothes are quite special and each of them has its own unique style. You will definitely stand out from the crowd in our clothes.” One of the customers nodded with a smile and began trying on the clothes. Seeing the other customer had no intention of trying on clothes, Xiaomin kept working on her, “Madam, why not try on some clothes? This one suits you well.” When flattering the two women, she actually thought: “These clothes are too fancy for women of their age. They will probably never wear them, even if they buy them. But these middle-aged women have great purchasing power, so I should get them to buy the clothes by flattering them more.” So she constantly recommended different garments to the customers while chatting with them patiently and praising how they looked in the clothes. One of the customers praised Xiaomin as she tried on the clothes, “You are so kind and so good at doing business.” Xiaomin felt very flattered. Finally, the customers decided to buy some clothes. Xiaomin skillfully totted up the sum, 640 yuan, with a calculator. They paid by credit card. She swiped the credit card in the POS machine and returned it back to them. Then she saw the two customers to the door with a smile, saying, “Thank you very much. I hope you will come again.” But when she came back to update the accounts, she found that she had undercharged the customers by 200 yuan. She hurriedly rushed out to look for them, but they had already vanished. She came back to the store and stared at the POS machine, her head hung in despair. She thought: “This is the first time I’ve made such a mistake while swiping cards since I started selling clothes. What’s wrong with me? Heavens! What should I tell my boss later? Should I falsify the accounts?” She felt upset. A few days ago, some clothes were stolen on her shift, and now she’d undercharged the customers by 200 yuan. Working hard that month had all been in vain. She called out to God in her heart, “O God! I don’t understand Your intentions in this matter. Please enlighten me.” After the prayer, she recalled a passage of God’s word: “I most certainly do not favor anyone. You who sincerely love Me, I will sincerely love you, and as for those who do not sincerely love Me, My wrath will ever be with them, so that they may remember through eternity that I am the true God, the God who examines the innermost heart of man. Do not act one way to others’ faces but another way behind their backs; I see clearly everything you do, and though you may fool others, you cannot fool Me. I see it all clearly. It is not possible for you to conceal anything; all lies within My hands.” With each word of God knocking at her heart, Xiaomin realized that God requires people to be honest because the essence of Him is in faithfulness. He likes the pure and the honest, and despises the crafty. God observes everything, and her wrong doings, which were also troubling her conscience, could never escape His eyes. Xiaomin recalled the last church meeting, in which she had told the brothers and sisters about some clothes being stolen in the store. In the meeting, Sister Li said, “Xiaomin, losing those clothes did not happen by chance. It must surely be because of the kindness of God. You should reflect on your behavior. Do you practice being an honest person when you sell the clothes?” Xiaomin said, “If I sell honestly, I won’t earn much money. But I will first practice being an honest person with you brothers and sisters.”
Thinking of this, Xiaomin couldn’t sit still. She felt so ashamed that her face was burning. She knew that it was God’s chastisement and judgment falling upon her. She remembered that in order to make money, she had been crafty but still felt at ease. Indeed, her conduct was below the baseline of a normal person’s conscience and didn’t have any dignity or integrity. She paced back and forth before the counter and reflected on all that she had done recently: Cheating the customers, telling them the bad quality and outdated clothes were limited-editions and unique, and selling them at high prices. How sly and cunning she was! God clearly saw what she did. At this point, she understood that it was because God was saving her by purifying and changing her selfish, despicable, self-interested, satanic nature that He dealt with her and disciplined her. She felt remorse and self-blame, and decided to behave according to God’s words from then on. Although Xiaomin wouldn’t make as much money, at least she had an understanding of God’s righteous disposition and truly realized that God is holy and righteous. God doesn’t allow people to hatch schemes or deceive others, but hopes that everyone can be an honest person. When she understood God’s will, Xiaomin made a commitment before God: “I must be an honest person and will never do one thing in front of people and another behind their backs. I must accept God’s inspections, and forsake my fleshly interests and prevail over Satan!”
In the afternoon that same day, a customer came and tried on an article of clothing. She looked at herself in the mirror and asked Xiaomin, “How do I look in this coat?” Being busy with the accounts, Xiaomin casually answered, with her head bowed: “You look fabulous in it. You have a good figure and that makes you look elegant in any clothes!” After saying this, she immediately realized that she had lied again. But she still thought: “If I don’t say that, she will probably not take it, and then I won’t get a commission.” Then, God’s words occurred to her: “Everything that happens to people happens when God needs them to stand firm in their testimony to Him. Though nothing major is happening to you at the moment and you do not bear great testimony, every detail of your daily life is a matter of testimony to God” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God”). In God’s words, Xiaomin understood His intentions and demands. In our daily life, we must practice the truth in whatever we meet, because everything is being watched by God and is related to testimony for God. She realized that her behaviors were the same as those of a crafty person, and that she had failed to do the witnessing that God requires of mankind. Before, for the sake of her own interests, she played tricks and cheated the customers, so God revealed to her His righteous and majestic disposition. Now, when God had again arranged for her this situation to experience, she didn’t glorify God but brought shame to His name instead. She was very remorseful and prayed to God in her heart: “O God! I’ve fallen into my old wretched ways again. Please guide me to practice to be an honest person.” Then, she suspended what she was doing, went over to the customer, and told her the truth, “This one is more casual and that one is more for business. It depends on the occasion.” The customer smiled, “You’re an honest person. If I had a shop, I would hire you to manage it.” At that time, Xiaomin felt at ease and peaceful in her heart, because she’d tasted the sweetness of practicing God’s words.
That night, before Xiaomin went home, her boss came to check the sales figures. Xiaomin’s heart was pounding. She thought: “How should I tell about what has happened today? If I tell him the truth, I will look bad.” Just when Xiaomin was caught in the dilemma between minding her own interests or being an honest person, these words of God suddenly rang in her ears: “Do not act one way to others’ faces but another way behind their backs.” She finally realized that her hesitation showed that she was not an honest person before God and God wouldn’t praise her. At that time, Xiaomin prayed silently: “O God! I beg You to guide me and give me the strength and courage to put into practice being an honest person!” With 200 yuan in her hand, she got up the courage to tell her boss solemnly, “Here’s 200 yuan in cash because I undercharged some customers 200 yuan when swiping their card today. Please take it!” Her boss said, surprised, “Xiaomin, you are kidding! How come you undercharged? It has never happened before.” She replied immediately, “No, it hasn’t, but today I did undercharge some customers 200 yuan. It is my fault. I am a Christian, so I must tell you the truth.” At that moment, her boss seemed to understand. He smiled and nodded. Xiaomin said to her boss calmly, “Business has been good recently, but when I took an inventory, I found that some clothes were gone, so I tampered with the accounts.” The boss looked at Xiaomin with approval and said, “You don’t need to compensate me. From now on, you will get a pay rise of 200 yuan per month. My mother-in-law is also a Christian. You can have a chat with her when you are free.” Xiaomin felt it was miraculous: She had just put a little truth into practice, and she immediately saw that God went before her to lead and encourage her.
Through this experience, Xiaomin learned that it is very important to practice being an honest person as God’s words require. She realized that by practicing being honest, one can be filled with peace and live life with dignity and integrity. Both God and people love honesty. Honest people receive God’s care and blessings and are at peace in their hearts, which can’t be measured with money. After this unusual experience, she had more faith in practicing being honest and understood that people who have been corrupted by Satan really need God’s judgment and chastisement so as to become honest. Xiaomin sincerely thanked God for leading her through a meaningful day. All the glory be to God!