I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the highways and byways of middle America.
It reminds me of my days as a kid looking out a truck window. Being higher up, we could also see into other cars. All the towns and homes we’d pass, it imprinted on my soul the value of each person, especially in the vastness of our world.
In a day, we may pass a dozen towns and then meet someone at the truck stop, grocery store, or the trailer park as we set up their home.
One lady let us use her bathroom while we worked. When she found out we were from Utah, she dug in to “save my soul”.
Just a few weeks before, a sweet lady on our congregation wrote out by hand a scripture she wanted us to always remember. I can still see her handwriting in my mind. When cornered and challenged, I fall back on those handwritten words. This softened her heart to see a young child profess Christ and the reasons for my belief. She later brought us cookies as an apology.
Throughout my life and even on this trip, I’ve had people say, “Oh you’re from Utah, you must be Mormon.” I have answered each time with more confidence till it was a easy to say “Yes, yes I am.”
One lady at my booth on a Saturday morning, when she found out my faith, was instantly repulsed when I affirmed that I was indeed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She couldn’t get away fast enough… you’d have thought she found out I had COVID or Ebola or something!
Another lady upon discovering my faith, asked questions. Curious of some things she’d heard. It was easy for her to ask a stranger, I was happy to answer.
My childhood taught me there is more goodness than grumpiness out there, as are all so unique and it taught me that everyone has a place. No one is better or less than anyone else. We just need to talk to each other more, not less. We don’t have to agree to find common ground and respect, but if we don’t connect we will never learn.
#difference #respect #faith #connect #growth
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