Tuesday, December 20, 2016

#LIGHTtheWORLD Day 20 - Making the difference by helping others see the potential in their lives

In January of 2012, I wrote a blog about a former college professor of mine, Ron Coleman who later served in University of Utah administration and really made a difference in my life.  Dr. Coleman was at a crossroads where I doubted my academic ability and it would have been easy for him to dismiss me as someone not capable of succeeding in his class.  Instead, Dr. Coleman invited me to his office, chastised me in a kind way that I could not only do better in his class but be successful as a student at the University.  I use daily the writing skills gained with my history degree and frequently use the context of history in making decisions.  For the two years I served as President of the Advisory Board for the Natural History Museum of Utah, the State's natural history museum, I thought often that would I not have been there or done a number of other things in my life if it were not for Dr. Coleman.

As an LDS Stake President, I have the privilege of receiving back reports from numerous individuals, including couples who serve in a variety of ways from programs helping those with drug addiction, employment, humanitarian work, serving lunch to those who are transitional and have no homes, to education.  Their stories are touching and the lives they effect are real.  Two couples I would mention are Tracy and Sandy Ferguson who serve in the Pathway Program.  This program assists those seeking to get Higher Education, a place to start.  They serve weekly together and mentor a number of students from all ages and with a variety of challenges. The other couple are Clint and Lois Long who serve in the Institute program at the South City Institute, which I oversee, and help those seeking to improve their religious studies and testimonies of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  They fellowship, and are the steady force for both students/non students of the college.

We never know when we happen to be at a crossroad for someone looking for the right path.  Our patience with those around us and always showing a loving hand will make a difference in the lives of those around us for a lifetime to come.

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