The chapter from the My Little Devotional series we’ve got going on for today is something that most–if not all–of us are guilty of. We may not constantly and consistently show such behavior–albeit, there are people who do so–but, there are times when we do and because of that, and the notion that goes along with it, we find ourselves buried in debts that we have a hard time paying back.
Guy de Maupassant’s The Necklace is the story of a young woman, Mathilde, who desires desperately to be accepted into high society. One day her husband, an ordinary man, is given an invitation to an elegant ball. Mathilde borrows a necklace from a wealthy friend to wear to the occasion. During the course of the evening she receives many compliments from the aristocracy present…but she also loses the necklace.
In order to restore the lost jewelry, Mathilde’s husband borrows 36,000 francs, tapping every resource available to him. A look-alike necklace is created and Mathilde gives it to her friend, telling her nothing of what had happened.
For ten years, the couple slaved to pay back the borrowed francs, each of them working two jobs. They were forced to sell their home and live in a slum. When the debt was finally cleared, Mathilde saw her well-to-do friend one day. She confessed that the necklace she returned was not the one she borrowed, and then she learned: that the necklace loaned to her had been made from fake gemstones! The borrowed necklace had been worth less than 500 francs.
Trying to ‘keep up appearances’ is often a way ultimately to lose face.