The Honesty Question
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“The Honesty Question,” Friend, July 2021

The Honesty Question

The author lives in Utah, USA.

What’s more important: an award or the truth?

“Ye should do that which is honest” (2 Corinthians 13:7).

Question Mark

“Christy, this is for you,” her teacher, Mrs. Devin, said. She handed Christy an envelope.

“Thanks,” said Christy. She tore open the envelope and read the note inside.

Congratulations! You are one of six students chosen by your classmates to receive an Outstanding Citizen award for the fifth grade. Please answer the questions below and submit them to the office by the end of the day for our judges to review.

Christy gave the envelope a squeeze of excitement. She could hardly wait to show her friends!

“Guess what!” she told Gabriella at lunch. “I might get an award.”

“That’s great!” said Gabriella.

“I just have to answer all of these questions first,” said Christy. “But I feel like I’m running out of interesting things to write about. This one says, ‘How have you made a difference in your community?’ I’m having a hard time thinking of anything.”

“You could probably just write something you think would be good to do,” said Gabriella. “It’s not that big of a deal. They just want to know what kind of person you are.”

Christy didn’t feel great about making something up. But maybe she could write something that she could plan to do in the future. She tapped her pencil on the page while she thought.

Then she remembered a sign she’d noticed at the public library: “Looking for tutors for beginning readers.” She liked helping her younger siblings read. It could be fun to help other kids too. She hadn’t signed up to help yet … but she wanted to! She wrote down, “Volunteering at the library to help kids learn to read.”

Christy looked at what she’d written. She felt a little lump in her throat and tried to swallow it down. But the uncomfortable feeling just seemed to get worse as she walked to the office and turned in her answers.

As Christy walked home from school, her footsteps felt heavy. By dinnertime she didn’t feel like eating.

“You OK, honey?” asked Mom.

Christy let out a big sigh. “Not really.”

“Want to talk about it?” asked Dad.

Christy explained what she’d done. “I haven’t felt good inside since.” She folded her arms and slid down in her chair.

“I’m glad you told us.” Mom squeezed Christy’s hand. “That’s the first step in making things right.”

“And I know what the next step is,” Christy said with a smile. Just thinking about what she would do made her feel a little better.

That night as she prayed, she told Heavenly Father she was sorry that she hadn’t been honest. She knew He would help her repent and make things right.

The next morning, Christy walked to the school office. She swung open the door and stepped inside …

Friend Magazine, Global 2021/07 Jul

Illustrations by Morgan Bissant