Buyer Beware

Monday, August 21, 2006
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Proverbs 11:1 – The Lord abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight. (NIV)

When I was a child, my mother would send me to Mr. Groover's store to purchase grocery items. In those days, almost everything was sold by the pound. Mr. Groover had a beam balance scale with containers on either side. Those scales were dependent on standardized weights being used on the side opposite to what was being weighed. He always added an ounce or more to the item, "Just in case," he said, "there might be a tiny flaw in the merchandise."

There is a great difference in our grocery stores today. Most items are pre-packaged or else hurriedly weighed on government-standardized scales at the checkout counter by a rushed clerk as she scans the purchases. We have to accept those weights, since very few small stores remain that weigh items on scales where the results can be viewed. Many pre-packaged items today even bear the label, "Let the buyer beware."

We are living in a mechanized, technological world of big business today. We have little choice but to buy things as packaged or to leave them alone. But in our personal lives, we still have choices. We can be honest in our dealings with others, including the corporate chains that pre-package in sizes that confuse us into buying what we conceive of as a pound when actually it amounts to just twelve ounces. We can deal honestly with the government revenue department, or the fellow who gives us too much change, and in numerous other ways that show our integrity.

Prayer: Lord, most of us are living in such a confusing and complicated world today. From sellers of gasoline, to utilities, insurance, food, and medicine, it seems many are out to make megabucks at our expense. Give us the patience of Job and the wisdom of Solomon to know whom to trust and what to accept. For those things we can't change, grant us the patience to accept. Amen.

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Ivie Bozeman <>
Thomasville, Georgia, USA

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