The Reason to Do Right

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“The Reason to Do Right,” Friend, Oct. 1999, 48–inside back cover

The Reason to Do Right

Cleave to that which is good (Rom. 12:9).

My name is David Alvarez. I live in Rockville, Maryland, in the metropolitan area of Washington, D.C. I went to school in Potomac, Maryland, when I was younger. My siblings and I were the only members of the Church who attended that school. This meant I had to make very important decisions about what was right and what was wrong.

One day I was in gym class. We were playing volleyball. I was about to volley a ball over the net, when something green caught my eye—something on the floor. I went a little closer. It appeared to be a twenty-dollar bill. I felt a cold shiver down my spine. Nervously I pounded the ball to the other side of the net.

“Hey, look what I found!” I said to one of my classmates. He didn’t respond. “Hey, look what I found!” I repeated. He didn’t seem to hear me.

I looked up from the bill, and I realized that a volleyball was headed my way. I hit it to the other side and kept on playing for a few more minutes. After a while, I looked down at the floor, and to my astonishment, the money was still there.

I picked it up, realizing that no one else seemed to have noticed it. I stuffed the money into my pocket and thought of the reasons to keep it: If I kept it, I could pay for a couple of field trips without having to earn the money, enjoy snack times in the cafeteria, have a larger bank account, or have fun sharing it with my friends. On the other hand, someone might come up to me later and say, “Have you seen a twenty-dollar bill?” I would feel guilty if I had to say that I had spent it.

Even though I could think of more reasons to keep the money than to be honest and turn it in, I began to think to myself, What would Jesus want me to do? What would I do if He was leaning against the gym wall, looking at me?

Look at your ring, your CTR ring, I told myself. I looked at my ring. Then I could not bear it any longer. I walked over to the gym teacher and showed her the money. “I found this twenty-dollar bill on the floor.”

“Oh my!” the teacher responded. “That sure is a lot of money! I’ll turn it in to the office.”

As I went back to playing volleyball, I could feel some words inside me: Good choice, David. You did what was right. I thank Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost for giving me the courage to do what was right.

Illustrated by Scott Greer