I had always appreciated the principle of mom say only the truth until that September day when the notice communicating the bank’s mortgage on our stucco house with four rooms expired thirty days arrived.
My father had died that year, and reached entries mom just to keep us both. I was fourteen and got my little odd jobs was not enough to affect our budget. We could not raise the money to raise home mortgage.
This problem did call Mom to Bert McVey, an old friend of my father. She thought Bert, a prosperous merchant of the city, would be a valuable financial advisor. He warned that the most practical solution for our economic problems would sell our big house with about 2000 square meters and buy a smaller one.
-The house appears to be in excellent condition for sale-was observed. His piercing blue eyes seemed to pierce the wallpaper to determine the condition of the stucco.
-So Mama nodded, except the boiler. It has a large crack. Just worked last winter, and the house was filled with smoke several times. The heating system can not withstand another winter.
Well, said Mr. McVey laughing, using a sympathetic tone and employing adults with children-we need not tell that to prospective buyers, do not you? In the business world often say: “The buyer must take care of himself.”
– How? Mom cried raising her brown eyes does that mean you have a code of ethics for our family and the people with whom we interact socially, and one for the business world?
Look, Louise McVey replied impatiently Bert-you will have to be less prude if you want to get the most out of your property. Remember that business is business. I know you’re a stickler for the truth and I’m not suggesting you tell a lie. I only ask you not to mention the boiler.
-An omission can be a lie, Bert, ‘Mom said. Just last week I bought a dress fabric. The fabric I chose was offered along with others that were the best parts of the house. Since the seller did not say anything about the quality of the material I gathered, of course, that this was what seemed to be. When the cutting was noticed imperfections in the frame. I considered that the seller had not been honest through and through because it said nothing about the failures.
‘Very well,’ said Bert Luisa snorting in exasperation and annoyance. Give the house for less than what you would ask if the boiler was in perfect condition. And leave the repair to the buyer.
Mom put a notice in the newspaper. There were several calls. One of the potential buyers was really interested. I had just arrived in town and was eager to buy a home and bring your family.
We show the house from the roof to the basement. Anyone could tell she was impressed.
Then in the basement mom said:
-This is a good buy. I ask less for it because the first thing you should do is buy a new boiler.
The man froze. His interest in the house vanished in a flash before our eyes.
-So the heating system is totally ruined, eh? I’ll let you know my decision.
He ran as if someone were puncturing with a sharp instrument.
I wondered if Mom had acted wisely. A small business would lie confirmed sale desperately needed.
– Did you have to warn about the caldera, Ma? I asked.
‘So I think,’ said Mother, ‘I know of no biblical statement that says we must tell the truth whenever we can and do lie when convenient.
Mom put another ad in the newspaper.
All kinds of people marched for our house. The general comment was: “It’s too big” for what Mom did not have to say anything to the boiler.
Time passed. I increasingly doubted more and more under say nothing but the truth. That’s when Mr. and Mrs. Guthrie, members of our church, came to see the house.
They had six children and therefore needed a house the size of ours.
Just as I feared, Mom noted rupture of the boiler. To my surprise the Guthrie did not seem discouraged, especially when Mom explained that they had discounted price repair the house.
-I tell you what we do, Luisa said Mr Guthrie taking his hands to emphasize his proposal-:
Seek some technical boilers in town and see if any of them can settle a new boiler before October first, because then our lease expires. If I can get the boiler installed prior to that date, we will close the business.
Mom waited and prayed. One night confided his fear:
-If Guthrie did not buy our house without it we are left without the money to buy another.
Mr. Guthrie called the next day.
He said that all technical boilers city were covered orders because many people were adjusting to their heating oil. They could not promise that he would install a new boiler before December. The business would not.
Desperate mom called Bert McVey again:
– Bert, I can not sell the house! he said as he tried to hide the tears that came to her throat.
Yes can, Luisa complacently assured her. This issue only needs to be handling it properly.
I will place your home in the hands of Nordell and Bradenber, top real estate agents in the city; let them handle the business.
‘Very well,’ said Mum.
-I felt relieved that our little capital saved, and hurt that Mom seemed to have given up a part of herself. I thought, “Mom can not live the Christian principles at all times.”
It was then, in that second, when all my years of attending Sabbath school and all the teachings of my mother he came down, and was without faith, naked in a world of big words that meant nothing. For the first time I realized how important, how these Christians were essential to my life principles.
If Christianity was not the answer, how could you believe? I thought but did not dare to speak. I never felt so desolate as when I thought my mother had abandoned the principles by which she had always governed. If my mother consented to lie, what served faith or prayer or anything else?
Runners carried the business very well, Mr. Nordell showed many, many people our house.
Finally, a man showed interest.
Mr. Nordell praised the house in such superlative terms that I had to look again to convince myself that this “American-style elegant mansion” was the house I knew.
The prospective buyer sat next to Mr. Nordell, while mom served lemonade and cookies in the table.
They discussed the various shrubs and plants that had been placed to beautify the grounds of the copper pipe and Dad had new roof put on last year.
Mr. Nordell emphasized how perfect everything was and made a price that exceeded the originally placed by mom at $ 2,700.
Finally, Mom interrupted:
-Of course, you should know that the heating system needs to be repaired.
I gripped the chair tightly.
Probably the sale was ruined again; but, strangely, I felt a wave of happiness invaded. Mom and Christianity had not failed me, after all.
The real estate agent made her sign all mom, so shut up. She did not pay the slightest attention.
The buyer, on the other hand, put all your attention on it.
– Are you sure that the rest of what I’ve been told is true? he asked anxiously. Everything else is really like what I described?
‘Yes mom said shaking his head affirmatively. Everything is as it would have been presented, except the boiler.
– Deal! excited-stated buyer.I’ll take the house!
The conversation stopped. The room fell silent ostensibly.
Then the voice of Mr. Noerdell, trembling and weak, broke the silence:
– Does the purchase?
Yes, I will buy the house buyer repeated, smiling as he watched the surprise in the face of the real estate broker. I am skilled in boilers. Mr. Guthrie called me to ask if I could put a boiler in this house, so you understand that knew all about the heating system. That did not worry me. What would concern me is that they had not told me the truth about the boiler, because then you could also have lied about the rest. Now I feel confident to go ahead with the business.
The real estate business was successful mom. A success from the point of finance, of course. But more than that, it was a successful integrity!