Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Price of Integrity

A couple weeks ago, I found a yellow envelope on my car window. Now you don't have to be around Loma Linda University long to know what a yellow envelope means. I was guilty of a parking violation. The date was actually April 1 so at first, I thought it was a joke. But upon closer inspection, the ticket was very real. The photo of the ticket is displayed on the right and it reads, "VIOLATION: PARKED OVER THE TIME LIMIT, FINE: $30.00.

Now $30 may not seem like a lot to some people, but to a poor graduate student with no income who is planning a wedding, it hurts. I immediately trudged to the Security Office trying to think of ways to get out of paying the fine. I thought about claiming that I didn't know the parking time limit or that I thought reparking across the street was okay. But all my reasonings were either untrue or half-truths, at best. Should I lie? I decided that my integrity was worth more than $30 and instead submitted it to the Lord, asking Him to honor my commitment.

The LLU Department of Security always allows for an appeals process. You write on a form why you think they should excuse your ticket. I've gotten reprieves in the past, but never by admitting guilt. Here is what I wrote:

I acknowledge that I reparked, mainly because the library has so few parking spaces and there was nowhere else to park. I'm just hoping you will reduce the fine since I am a poor student and recently engaged (trying to save money =) Please!
I received an answer back last week. The form was marked: Warning. No fine.
"For by grace are ye saved through faith and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God." Ephesians 2:8
Note: Please do not replicate my appeal at the LLU Security Office. I hear it only works once...