It was around 5.30pm that I went to a bookstore - yesterday evening. Almost always when I go to a bookstore, I would buy a book or two. In this case, I brought one particular book by Robert E. Fisher, Quick to Listen, Slow to Speak. I knew what I want to buy, but I intentionally delay the time just to browse out some other interesting newly arrived books. (For a purpose of 'booking' and free reading) When I'm done doing my business, I went to the counter to pay for the book.
"That's it? Just one book?” he said to me.
[I don't know either that's was another words for, 'Is that all??? You been here for almost an hour and buy just one book???' but I doubt he would say that because I'm sort of regular customer and free reading is what I do part-time there.]
"Yes, that's all.” I replied. "Thank you", as I continued the transaction with a smile on my oily face.
Before he could name the price, I interrupted his routine ask-for-price tagline...
"Uh... Sorry... I don't have enough money. Can I come back in 10 minutes?” I said pretending checking my money in the bag which I already knew that my money is not enough as my memory flash back in front of that counter within millisecond.
"Okay.", he said.
As I came back, something happen to him, I don't know what exactly it is… He breathes in soo deep and he breathe the air out with a very frustration vocals... saying;
"Richard, peace is very important, ho?"
"Money or peace? I think peace is very important, ho?"
I was speechless, not because of the quality of his questions but because it was very sudden for me. So I applied what the book title said; Quick to listen, slow to Speak. Initially, my mission is to pay for the book and go, but suddenly it turned out to be a counseling session. He kept on saying and asking me questions,
"Money or peace, I think peace is important, ho, Richard? What do you think?"
[Approximately 15 minutes later]
I asked, "Are you okay with your work? Yes, peace is important, money come later."
"Ya ya I'm okay.” he replied. "Ya peace is important... Even Jesus said peace is important." (I think he forget which verse said this)
"He said, "My peace I give to you. (John 14:27)", I tried to correct his words with no offend.
"Which verse is it?” he asked.
"Book of John... I'm not sure which verse...” I answered with realizations that I'm not good either in memorizing numbers. His face turned from anxiety to productivity. He hurried scan my book and end up the transaction. From the counter to the main door he never stops thanks me, "Thank you, thank you, Richard" (x 5).
Along my way back, I'm still wondering what was going on. I observed that he's a busy man, loaded with works and less enjoyment with his vocation. These are the conditions that can happen to us anytime when we are too busy doing out works. When we are too busy to meet our needs of living, we didn't realize that the Peace of God is not with us. He recognized that the peace of God is very important thus he need the Word of God to remind him about the Peace that Jesus had offer for those who are weary with heavy burdens.
Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you." (John 14:27) In this context, it is refer to the salvation of Christ's redemptive work. It also means total well-being and inner rest of spirit, in fellowship with God. Are you longing for oneness, peace, quietness, and rest for your soul?
Both are important. We need money, don’t deny it. But if you have to choose between money and peace… always choose Peace of God.
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