What Cheating Taught Me Part 1

Written by on June 19, 2013

Girl cheating

Back in my college days, it was crunch time—the Music History 101 exam. I set my books on the concrete floor of the spacious arena classroom and glance up at the clock. A short minute or two to mentally review the eras of music. Medieval. Renaissance. Baroque. Classical. Romantic. Contemporary. Sure, I know the names, but can I remember features clearly enough to identify sound bytes?

I twist a lock of hair with a finger and then take an exam page from the stack we’re passing along my row. The teacher reviews instructions for the test. She plays a number of selections. For one particularly unusual passage pouring out the speakers at the front of the classroom, my heart pounds in my chest as loud as the bass drums. What era could that song be from? Baroque? Renaissance? I’m lost.

I twist the edge of a sleeve and mark “Renaissance.” No way am I going to pass this thing. Betcha everyone else in the room knows this stuff but me.

A voice in my head says, “This is too hard. Get help—take a look around.”

I frown. But wouldn’t that be cheating?

“Yes, it would,” says another softer, kinder voice in my head. “Forget that idea.You don’t need help. You can do this.”

“Think of it as a small loan. The student in the row ahead won’t mind.”

The sloping floor of the classroom does lend a rather inviting view of her page.

The gentle voice in my head says, “Don’t go there.”

The other voice insists, “Oh, you’re going there all right. You need to ace this one.”

Shhh . . . I say in my mind, silencing the voices. I’ve got an exam to take here.

I steal a furtive glance at the page of the young woman in the row before me. Bet she knows this stuff. Anyone knows more than I do.

To be continued.


Friend, which voice do you think I listen to? When you’re making a decision, how do you discern the enemy’s voice from God’s?

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