Friday, May 27, 2016

How will they know?

When we decided to move back to New Mexico I thought “Wow! Maybe I’ll get to meet some of my favorite authors.
 I always enjoyed the sights and sounds of New Mexico and had fun collecting art of the area. My home is filled with paintings and sculptures that I picked up at craft shows. I enjoyed talking to the artists about their work. It makes each piece personal. One of my favorites was painted by the bag boy at the grocery store that we shopped at when I was a child.
But authors? How do you get to know them except through their work? One night I dreamed that I would meet two of my favorite authors in New Mexico, in church! Isn’t that a crazy dream?
The first one I met was at a local bar. She was doing a book signing. I didn’t know what she looked like or anything about her except that I liked the books her famous father had written. She was continuing the series so we went to listen. I sat at the back nursing my soft drink and a lovely woman walked up to me and started a conversation. It was interesting, relaxing and informative. I had fun. And behold, she was the author. I got to make a connection without being star struck.
Sunday was a conference at church. We had four or so congregations meeting together. I was with my brother and his wife and didn’t see many from my own congregation. Just before the meeting began a new member walked past us and my sister in law said hello and asked him which ward he was in. He said the name of the same one I belonged to. So he asked if he could sit in the empty seat next to me and we had a short chat of introduction. “Your name is so familiar, I said, are you related to anyone in Los Alamos?” After conference we talked some more and I said, “See you next Sunday!”
On the way home it struck me. I was sitting in church, in New Mexico, with my other favorite New Mexico Author. God’s little gift- He pays attention to our dreams and wishes, not just our needs and prayers.  What a fun time I am going to have fellowshipping a new member- if I can keep from being star struck.
My daughter had fun experiences like this when she was working at a local bookstore and authors and movie stars came in for material and book signings. She was good at helping but not over-whelming them as customers. The trick is to be kind, cheerful, and of service. But not stalking them.
How do we teach our children to treat others helpfully but comfortably?
I am reminded of a song we sing to our children

How will they know
  1. Words: Natalie W. Sleeth, 1930-1992
Music: Natalie W. Sleeth, 1930-1992. Arr. by A. Laurence Lyon, b. 1934, and Natalie W. Sleeth

1. How will they know, the ones for whom we care,
That God is love and with us ev'rywhere,
That life is good, with blessings all can share?
How will they know unless we teach them so?
2. How will they learn that, though they go astray,
God will forgive and help them find the way?
How will they feel the Spirit day by day?
How will they know unless we teach them so?
3. How will they grow in wisdom and delight?
How will they choose to follow what is right?
How can they trust the future will be bright?
How will they know unless we show them?
4. How will they live when they at last are grown?
What will they give to children of their own?
Will they reflect the values we have shown?
How will they know, as on through life they go?
How will they know unless we strive to teach them so?

As we relate to those around us—as we teach our children how to treat others—As we pray to God and tell him our hopes and dreams—we can remember that God cares about us always, in all ways, even the small stuff

1 comment:

gwenshere said...

Painting by Deborah Paisner Santa Fe New Mexico