A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Alaskan Wilderness…

I had a little coincidence hit me today, or tender mercy of the Lord today, if that’s how you like to look at things. It’s how I see it.

 Today I was invited to a political luncheon. Nice, right? Yeah, but some days you just don’t want to go. Some days when you’re a writer, you want to stay home and write. The organizer, however, asked for some help. He’s helped me out numerous times in the past, and I didn’t want to leave him hanging, so I agreed to go, even though I’d had plans to do some research for my next novel. I didn’t exactly know where I’d find first-hand accounts of people who had served as wilderness guides or hunt guides in the bush in Alaska, but today was my day to dig it out—except this political thing got in my way.

Now, in my church, our leaders have encouraged us to serve in our community, not to just get caught up in our families or with our church friends. Get out and serve. That’s probably why there is a disproportionate number of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in office. It’s just what we try to do as our duty to preserve freedom.

So, with those nudges to get me out of my writing hidey hole, I put on some heels and lipstick and went.

Well, after my help at the sign-in desk was over, I went and sat down at the seat my husband saved for me. It happened to be beside a couple I’d never met before. When the man introduced himself, I recognized his name as a local dentist whose office I pass all the time on picking my kids up from school. We visited, and then the men at my table started swapping fishing stories. I sometimes glaze over during fishing stories, except that my novel needed some research along these lines, so I listened up.

Then, to my sheer surprise—the dentist began talking about a two week trip to the Alaskan bush, where he was on a hunting and fishing trip.

What? Seriously? I listened more.

And then he talked about some other trips he’d gone on to other places in Alaska, some interesting locals he’d met (something else I’d had no idea how to research), as well as mentioned he’d spent some years as, you guessed it, a hunting and fishing guide. In the Alaskan bush.

“Well, I’m very interested in all of this,” I said and explained that I needed research on just his area of expertise for what I was writing. “Can I come by and interview you?” His wife looked delighted and offered for us to come spend an evening, for he could surely fill one.

No. Way. I gratefully took her card, and sat back and enjoyed the political speech a hundred times more than I expected to.

It kind of made me think about the Lord’s economy. If we are doing what our duty is to God, then He can make much more of our time than we can for ourselves. We only have to obey, and prioritize His counsel, and He will magnify our efforts.

And send us our very own Alaskan bush hunting guide if that happens to be what we need.


2 Responses

  1. C.J. Anaya
    C.J. Anaya August 24, 2015 at 6:53 pm |

    I loved and needed this. Thanks for posting it, Jen.

  2. Peggy
    Peggy August 24, 2015 at 7:58 pm |

    Love this. It’s so true. Little (and big) tender mercies/miracles are all around us.

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