I earned my very first money, twenty-five cents, from my maternal grandmother. I was just six years old at the time and I will never forget the difficult assignment she gave me: “Stevie, if you will take out the trash and tell me the First Commandment of God, I’ll give you a quarter. Now there are Ten Commandments of God. You’ll have to know each of them, in the correct order, for the next ten weeks after this week. You’ll receive a quarter if you’re correct. If you are not correct, you’ll receive a dime for taking out the trash.”
For ten long weeks, I struggled over the Ten Commandments trying to figure out what the words such as “covet”, “vain”, and “adultery” meant as well as well as get them in order. I took out a sheet of paper, wrote each Commandment down, in order. I repeated each Commandment over and over, for as many days as it took until I had the Commandments down by heart. The wording of all Ten Commandments in my youth has remained with me through the years. I have often wrestled with and stumbled in attempting to obey them, just as I wrestled with and stumbled in trying to learn and remember them. However, I have forever been grateful for their guidance, purpose and meaning.
It was not until many years later that I realized the other essential lessons that my maternal grandmother had taught me. First, the importance of providing an early framework and firm grounds of conduct to a young person. Second, the passing on of these principles to our children God’s teaching so that their lives rest on a firm foundation.
Parents and/or grandparents do you know a child or grandchild who would enjoy earning a few nickels, dimes or quarters? It will not corrupt a child. It is not a bribe…it is a great investment in the future…theirs and the nation’s!
A most powerful lesson... just as I have come to expect from you. Funny, I had paid my son's friend a dollar to memorize a scripture about six months ago. Weekend before last, he voluntarily quoted that same scripture to me. It was worth 10 times what I paid him to hear him say "He who does not know love does not know God, for God is love." Blessings, Treava