The year 2018 was a difficult year for my family and me. It started with my diagnosis of bladder cancer and surgery. Throughout the summer I was in and out of the hospital for various reasons including C-Diff bacterial infections and negative reactions to chemotherapy. Nevertheless it ended on a positive note. Many prayers and visits from friends and family were offered and appreciated.
There were many positive highlights in my life that impacted Anne and me through this ordeal and I would like to share one event that was spontaneous yet impactful.
In late August or early September I wanted to go on a drive. It was early evening and we drove up to Silver Lake and walked to the dock where we liked to fish or just observe nature. All we wanted was to just enjoy the beautiful sunset and evening.
When we got to the dock there were two men from Texas who were in Salt Lake City for some type of law enforcement conference. They were enjoying the beauty and taking pictures of the lake and its surroundings. We struck up a conversation with these men and we were really enjoying our visit and before long darkness had set in and we needed to end the conversation.
Before we separated these men asked us for a recommendation for a place to eat. We gave them Silver Fork Lodge and told them we were going there and if they wanted to join us they would be welcome. They told us thanks but made no commitment.
We said our goodbyes and departed in our separate directions. Anne and I went to the restaurant and had ordered and were enjoying ourselves as we talked and laughed and let our worries go. While we were in this trance of happiness these two men walked in and were being seated at another table. We waved to them and invited them to sit at our table; they took us up on our invitation.
We had a wonderful meal and even better conversation. We discussed our families, our work, my recent challenges, Utah’s beauty, the qualities of Texas, and many more things. None of us wanted the evening to end but we all realized that it was closing fast and we needed to go.
Before we left one of these men asked us if we were members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We told him we were. He asked us if we believe in prayer and we assured him that we do.
He told us that he was a member of the Southern Baptist Church and asked if he could offer a prayer before we left the restaurant. We thought that would be a great idea and so we all bowed our heads and closed our eyes while he said a prayer. It was a beautiful prayer and he prayed for my health and for our family. When he was through we thanked him and said our goodbyes again.
As Anne and I drove down the canyon we talked about the evening and the blessing we received by running into these two men from Texas. We talked about the beautiful prayer a stranger offered in our behalf and we were grateful for it.
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I think it’s important for us to help our children understand that there are many good people in the world who are different from us with different beliefs and philosophies and we should set an example of love and acceptance of people and help our children accept and appreciate differences in others. Life would be boring if we were all the same.