On about my third day as a resident of Geraldine, I ran out of stamps and walked the hundred yards or so to the post office. As I waited at the counter I overheard a conversation between "Marie" and and older gentleman who appeared to be one of the local farmers or ranchers. Well used truck parked out front, faded, worn jeans, button up plaid shirt, a hat that was obviously never left at home....
"I need to pay the Post Mistress for my postage from the other day," he said. " I mailed off some things and I didn't have enough money with me, so the she covered it for me."
"Oh, alright, how much do you need to pay?" asked Marie.
"I can't remember exactly but I know it was $62 dollars and some change," he said.
Marie looked in the cash drawer and pulled out a little sticky note. " Yeah, she said you might come in today...."
This exchange didn't seem at all out of the ordinary to the farmer or Marie. Yet, I was truly amazed! The Post Mistress had given this man over $62 bucks on good faith alone that he would come into town and pay her back! Take a moment and imagine yourself in the farmer's shoes at your local post office? Do you think the gal behind the counter would say, "No problem! Got ya covered, come back and pay me tomorrow?" Not a chance in just about any other place I know of! We'd be driving all the way back home to fetch our wallets, for sure.
Do you live in a place where the "Honor System" still thrives as an expected and respected way of doing business? Where you know what's owed to you will be paid. Where people actually wouldn't think of not keeping their word? The accountability here is tangible. If you treat anyone badly, prove yourself to be a liar or a cheat, or act in any way dishonorably, the whole town is going to know it. There would be huge repercussions and you'd probably have to leave town! People in this remote place are depending on each other in a way that most of our nation has forgotten. They are teaching the children the values that made this country the greatest there is.
In spite of the stressful things I do still have going on in my life....and there are quite a few....I find a moment in each day that I just look around at this place God led me to, and I am so grateful. I find my faith restored. In God, and in humanity.
Yesterday, there was a little note in my post office box. It seems the large envelope they mailed to Laramie, Wyoming for me had been 20 cents short on the postage. Today I walked over and gave the lady the postage due....