You’re Being Watched
Realizing life was a security camera, I nervously looked around.
“Someone’s always watching,” are the words pasted on my classroom wall. For years I scanned over the poster and thought nothing of it. However, during one writing assignment about our beliefs, I actually started to believe it. I relived the experiences of my life when I thought I was alone and did something good, or bad. Now I firmly believe that the actions you do when you are alone, reflect who you really are.
Ever so often, our local news station will film a spoof of the Fox reality T.V. show, “Punk’d.” In the short segment, dozens of innocent bystanders will have their integrity tested. After buying a candy bar or a soda, the staged cashier hands the costumer their change. However, the cashier “accidently” hands the buyer a $100 bill.
As I watched the TV show, I saw dozens of people notice the sweet surprise, but walk out the door anyway. The camera crews waited outside to surprise them. Many of the costumers made excuses for taking the money. For example, they claim they didn’t notice, or “don’t count their change.” But really, they did not do the right thing, and were caught. When I watched the show, I asked myself,
“Would I have taken the money?”
“No,” I answered my own thoughts, “well… one hundred dollars is a lot of money. Plus, I wouldn’t have thought anyone would notice that I took the money.”
However, I know that taking the money is not the right thing to do. Therefore, I would return the money to the cashier, and know in my heart that I did the right thing. That is its own reward. It is better than spending stolen money on meaningless possessions. The people who took the money showed me, and everyone watching, what kind of heart they really had. Am I like that? Are you?
The kind costumers, innocent and nice, acted polite around other people. Although, that was when people were watching; judging. When the ignorant bystander thought no one was watching, they committed a crime. They showed us they were actually selfish and greedy, even though they appeared good-hearted.
So ask yourself, “What would you do?”
I know that I will do the right thing. That’s because, “Someone’s always watching,” are the words engraved in my heart.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.