Monday, June 14, 2010

The miracle of the plane delay and unwanted rain

You will not believe what I am about to share with you.  It is a lovely story.  Get a snack and some juice.  You will like it.

Five years ago, I went to my first international RYLA conference in Chicago.  I was asked to be interviewed on tv.  I met lots of amazing folks.  The founder of RYLA told people I was his best friend.  I marched in a parade through downtown Chicago.  I ate Chicago pizza and rode the L.  But of everything that happened that trip, the most memorable was meeting a kindred spirit of a person named Zdenek.  He is from the Czech Republic.

We instantly hit it off despite every single obvious difference we had.  No common language.  No common history.  No common occupations.  No common life story except we are Rotarians.  That was enough.

We were together again the next summer in Malmo, Sweden for another RYLA.  Happier then the summer before, because we had year of friendship behind us.

I have had him as a Bob the Builder a while ago because he thought it would be a good idea to build a $1 million dollar Boy Scout facility for the scouts.  So he did.  It is just how he rolls.
Without sounding strange or churchy, last Friday night I had Mr. Fun give me a blessing for my trip this week.  If you know what that is, good on ya.  If you don't, essentially it is a prayer given for my behalf from my husband and God. 

While it is not my nature to put intimate special things out here on the blog (I mean talking about my long nose is as about as personal as I have gotten) I feel like this is too cool to not share.

On Friday, during the blessing, it talked about special tender moments that would come my way and I would always remember them.  In my mind's eye, I could see it involved Zdenek.  Over the years, we had many conversations about Mormonism and what it all means.  He is very intelligent, and has many questions.    He has always been very interested, in a positive way.  When I was listening to the prayer/blessing, I could see us talking about the LDS church doctrine and that I was suppose to give him something.  I cried after the blessing and distinctly remember telling Mr. Fun that I know I had some special something to engage with Zdenek with.  

In my sleep that night (Friday) I dreamt that I was suppose to bring Zdenek a cd of LDS music.  Mormon Tabernacle.  Not the hymns, but the folks songs one I have.  And I was not suppose to bring him a Book of Mormon.  For a LDS person to feel they should not give someone they care about church information is a little unusual.  But I followed my heart and packed the cd and left the book at home.

I was suppose to fly out Saturday afternoon.  Bad weather in Chicago cancelled my plane until Sunday morning.  Which means that I  didn't get to go to the Cathedral in Montreal on Sunday morning as was my plan. 

So I went today because I will not meet up with my committee and any of the RYLA people until Tuesday at 12:00. 

I just lounged around all morning in my hotel room this morning, hoping the annoying rain would clear.  If it had, I would have gone to the Botanical garden instead. 

But because the plane was delayed, I couldn't go to the church yesterday.  And the rain stayed so I went to the church today instead.  I was hungry, but I felt like I should go to the 12:30 English tour of the church.

During the tour, the guide had to tell a guy in the back to stop taking pictures twice.  I thought to myself  "he must not speak English very well."

When the tour ended, she pointed at him and said "You can take your pictures now."  At the end of her pointy finger was my buddy Zdenek.

Shock is not EVEN the word for it. 

Montreal has 1.6 million people in it.   And here in some random church that is not of my faith, in some country that is not native to either of us, we were together with 17 other folks on a tour we both randomly selected.

After our initial shock, the first words he said was "I do not believe that God has accidents."  His daughter is with him for our conference and we all spent the afternoon together.

The story doesn't stop there.  After we found a cafe for lunch, the first thing he started to ask me about was the church doctrine.  Not how my family was.  Not about RYLA or Rotary.  It was about church.

The story in short is a respected business man he knows has spent some time in Utah as of late and told Zdenek some things that are not true.  He is worried about me and what I believe.  But we have five years of friendship together, and we were able to connect.

Mr. Fun has a saying "There is a God, and I am not Him."  I do not even begin to see how God could orchestrate our adventure today by delaying my plane two days ago, but He did and it worked.  It has given me and Zdenek time to talk together without all the RYLA folks everywhere.  It has given me time to think about his questions and how to best lay his concerns to rest.

There is a God.  And I am not Him. 
Thank goodness.