Taking A Bribe Will Require A Lifetime To Pay

I have always been intrigued by the wisdom and sometimes the ignorance of older people.  As a child born to parents who were 54 and 43, I could never escape being around individuals who for the most part were the same age or even older than my parents.  By age 19 I landed a job working with W.R. Grace in downtown Memphis, Tennessee.  W.R. Grace back in the 1970’s and early 1980’s was one of the top 5 chemical companies in the entire world.  The world headquarters for the company was located in Manhattan, New York.  The Memphis offices was the major accounting center for the world operations and was located in the elite 100 North Main Building.  My office area was located on the 14th floor where the company comptroller, payroll and fixed assets employees were.  On floors 15 through 18 other operations were located included the Chief Operation Officer’s staff.  The main lobby was spotless and each morning the hallways were filled with professional and political people whose offices filled the 36 story building.  The fourth floor had a cafeteria and many shops that sold almost anything that a person might need.  There was a custom jewelery store owned and operated by Mr. Carlos.  In fact the name of the store was Carlos Jewelery.  Mr. Carlos would sometimes stand in the doorway of his very high end store and just smile and watch people throughout the lunch hours.  Numerous times I would stand and look at the many custom designed jewelery crafted by Mr. Carlos who always kept what I called a coal miners light on his head.  As time went by, Mr. Carlos took me into his store and began talking to me about how to look at diamonds and what was considered a great stone compared to just a typical stone with little or no clarity.  There were days when Mr. Carlos would point out various local Memphis politicians to me who had offices in the 100 North Main Building or they would be going to the offices of individuals for various purposes.  Mr. Carlos was affiliated with what appeared to be every organization of substance in the state of Tennessee.  Mr. Carlos was active in his Jewish religious order.  Mr. Carlos belonged to the Chamber of Commerce.  Mr. Carlos was well connected to every political power group in the entire state of Tennessee.

irs.jpg “In the name of earthly position one might forfeit their character”

One day a certain political figure whose office was in the 100 North Main Building walked by Mr. Carlos’ Jewelery store while he and I were talking.  This was a well known person in the African American business community that walked by.  This was a locally elected government official that walked by.  This was an individual that I had rode the elevator with and had only said good morning to that walked by Mr. Carlos’ store that day.  Mr. Carlos and I both said hello to the individual as he walked by, but it was what Mr. Carlos said to me afterwards that I never forgot.  Mr. Carlos said to me, “young man the person who just spoke to us will never be an effective politician and will never make it to the national political stage unless he does exactly what others tell him he can or can’t do.”  I was speechless and Mr. Carlos quickly explained why he said what he did to me.  In one sentence Mr. Carlos simply stated that the politician had “taken the hat”.

Royalty Free Stock Photography: Glittery hat filled with money “Everything that glitters isn’t necessarily good for you”

Mr. Carlos explained that in almost every circle there are “money hats” designed to ensnare individuals.  Mr. Carlos told me that he cautioned this politician not to be enticed by “the hat”, but he took it anyway.  Sadly according to Mr. Carlos, once you take the hat with the hundreds of thousands of dollars you also have taken all the good and bad intents attached to those who put the money into the hat.  Mr. Carlos described the hat as being so sinister that much like Judas Iscariot, once you have it in your hand and discover all of the corruption attached, you can’t give it back even if you want to do so.  My elderly 54 and 43 year old parents by example instilled in me to owe no man anything except to say thank you.  As a person who is continuing to learn to walk by faith and not by the many promises and offers of people each believer should try the spirits of people before falling for the potential entanglements of what is in that hat.  Do not become enticed by what is offered that you give up the greater gift of what you currently possess as did Eve with Satan.  Do not sell your soul out for evil like Esau forfeited his birthright. Jesus put forth the challenge this way, “what does it profit a man to gain the entire world and lose his soul or what will a man give once he has lost his soul to get it back again?”

Have you ever considered selling your soul in order to gain popularity, wealth or fame?  How did that story end for you?

 

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One Response

  1. Well put Bro. McClure

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