Once when Mahatma Gandhi was a young man a friend of his needed money and asked if Gandhi could help him.
At first Gandhi said, "I have no money." Then he conceded, "All right, I will see what I can do."
Gandhi stole a piece of gold from his brother and sold it. Then he gave the money to his friend. Afterward, he felt miserable for having stolen something.
He always told his father everything. He kept no secrets from him. Although his father was very sick and bedridden, Gandhi wrote him a note, saying, "I stole a piece of gold from my brother and I feel sad and miserable. Please forgive me."
When his father read the note, he got up from his sick bed. Gandhi was afraid he was going to strike him. But there were tears in his father's eyes. Gandhi thought that his father was disappointed in him for having stolen something from his own brother, and that made him feel even more miserable. Finally, his father tore up the note and tears flooded his eyes.
Gandhi assured his father, "Father, I will never steal again. This is my first and last time. Please do not cry."
Deeply moved, his father replied, "I am crying, son, not because you stole something, but because of your sincerity. You are always so truthful. I have never known anyone as sincere as you. I am proud of you."
There are some people who are naturally sincere, and others who are naturally insincere. Those who, like Gandhi, are sincere from the dawn of their lives are blessed. But those who are insincere need not and must not curse themselves. They can be sincere if they want to. The moment they truly want to be sincere, God in His infinite Compassion will help them.
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