I came upon this writing of Benjamin's today, written a while back when we were studying from an old, but newly republished book called Ethics. I have a special love for young people's writing, and Benjamin tickled my writer's heart with his analogies:
Honesty is the best policy.
This small phrase, only five words long, is something every family should have on their refrigerator. I think of honesty as a kind of chain letter; if one person is honest to another person then that person will be honest back. But if one of them is not honest and breaks the chain and tells a lie, then nothing but bad will happen.
In the modern world too much is based on lies and deceit. Politicians are one of the worst cases, promising things to the people and then when they get elected turn their backs and do as they please, totally ignoring what the people want. It is a sad thing indeed when no one is trusted and everyone is guilty until proven innocent. The courts are corrupt and law enforcement can't be trusted to be fair.
If honesty was an animal it would be on the verge of extinction. A person should not be judged by what his neighbor did but by his own actions. I sincerely believe that honesty is one of the best virtues to have and to teach to your children and future generations.
Honesty goes hand in hand with trust. People have shown that they cannot be trusted; none of us is perfect. There is only One I can trust and that is God, the Creator of All. But, I can choose who I want to trust. It is right to respect and honor others by acting in confidence and honesty toward them. I am reminded of when raising children how you can plant seeds of faith or of doubt that'll influence them, by what you say and how you act. When I was growing up, I wanted to be trusted because I knew my parents had faith in me, and it helped shape my actions. But, when someone proves untrustworthy, then that confidence is broken and much harder to rebuild.
A few weeks ago my family had the privilege of going to Branson, Missouri, for a Freedom Rally where Dr. Ron Paul spoke. He is a very rare, honorable congressman, with a respectable track record. Amazingly, he is still in the running against Senator John McCain for the Republican nomination of President, but you wouldn't know that because the media has purposely ignored him. They don't want you to hear his message, and after hearing him speak in person I think I know why. His ideas of honest government are too scary. He may not have much of a chance of getting the nomination but he continues to travel and speak his amazing, hopeful message to cheering grassroots audiences.
Hearing Dr. Paul in person was such a treat but who would've thought we'd be able to meet him, have him autograph his new best selling book, The Revolution, a Manifesto, and have our photo taken with him? That's Benjamin and I with Dr. Paul in the photo.
I am thrilled with the thought that I have passed on my ideals of honesty and trust to my boys, and I pray that a new generation of young folks with integrity will emerge to help set the needed revolution in motion.
Hebrews 13:18 says: Pray for us: for we trust we have a good conscience, in all things willing to live honestly.Update, June 14th: I just found out that Ron Paul has closed his campaign. I thank Dr. Paul for all he has done this year in educating We the People!