Monday, June 27, 2011

#8 Limit Your Regrets

Sorry it's been a while. Life.

Heber J Grant Story from his childhood (somewhere around 1866):
The winters were very cold in Salt Lake City, and Heber had only a thin, worn coat to keep him warm. He longed to have a warm coat but knew that they barely had enough money for food. Heber was delighted on his birthday when his mother presented him with a warm winter coat that she had made for him. His new coat was his most prized possession. A few weeks later, as Heber was hurrying on an errand, he saw a boy about his size shivering with cold. The boy was wearing a thin sweater, and Heber remembered how it felt not to have a warm coat. Heber took off his new coat and insisted that the boy put it on. He told the boy to keep it because he had another coat at home.

That afternoon Heber's mother saw him wearing his old coat. She asked "What have you done with your new coat?" Heber didn't know how to tell her. Then he said "I saw a boy that needed it worse than I did, so I gave it to him." Couldn't you give him your old one?" she asked.

Heber looked up at her, hoping she would understand, and saw her eyes fill with tears. He threw his arms around her as she answered her own question "Of course you couldn't Heber" she said. "Of course you couldn't"

One of my few regrets in life happened at CFA around Dec 1994. My girlfriend and I were on the way to the mall and we stopped to eat in at CFA. While eating, I saw a homeless man sitting and drinking coffee. He had a shirt, coat, and jeans. The missing item was his shoes and socks. He was barefoot. Unless you live through a GA winter, you may not realize just how cold it can get. I just kept looking at him-- hardly paying attention to my girlfriend. I couldn't help but feel sorry for him. I knew what I had to do. And then, I didn't do it. I didn't give him the shoes and socks he desperately needed.

This event may not be the biggest regret of my life, but it's the one I remember most. So in a sense, it is the biggest. I wish I would have been more like Heber. Maybe next time.

1 comment:

Denise Christian said...

I remember....You were very upset, I remember everytime we went to Jonesboro, we would drive around looking for him with the extra pair of shoes that you kept putting in the car just in case we see him again. I also remember telling this story about Herber J. Grant, and the first time you came home with "your regret" I couldn't help thinking I wouldn't have been as kind to you for giving away your brand new pair of expensive tennis shoes that took us forever to get you...that you needed desperately, as Sister Grant was to her son. I've thought about that alot over the years too...I'm just not sure I would have made you feel like you had made the correct choice. But I have always been very proud that your heart was in the right place and that it bothered you enough to look for him all the time. Dad and I looked for him a while back on our way though Jonesboro as we thought about you! It might be your regret, but it has always made me wonder if I would've been the kind Mother with no regrets. Love You! Mom