Okay, kids! It is time to play “There’s a Message in There Somewhere.” Yes, it happens to be the title of my book, but it is also something I have done occasionally on this blog over the years.
The premise: I tell you a story, and you try and find a message, or a moral to the story. Coincidentally, this experience happened about 30 minutes before I taught a class last Friday at the LDS Storymakers Conference on that exact subject. Coincidence?
Here’s the story:
There is a large staircase at the Utah Valley Convention Center that takes you from the first floor to the second. It consists of two flights of marble steps. (That is the actual staircase in the photo.) Sure, I could have taken the escalator, but I figured that taking the steps would be good for me.
I had my backpack slung across my left shoulder, and a 44oz soda in my right hand. I executed the first flight flawlessly, but after I rounded the corner and was halfway up the second flight, things got a little messy.
Somehow my right toe caught the lip of one of the steps and caused me to lurch forward. I took another clumsy step forward in a feeble attempt to catch my balance – to no avail. I was going down, but falling up.
It felt like I was falling in slow motion. I distinctly remember rotating my body so that my backpack (Which contained my laptop) would not hit the hard stairs. I also brought my hand up and took the brunt of the fall on my right shoulder.
I lay there for a minute taking inventory. I was relieved:
My body? Elbow and shin dinged up a bit.
Backpack and laptop? Safe.
Soda? Intact and unspilled. It was a miracle. Somehow I had managed to keep the cup upright, which is a good thing, because it could have been a mess of multiple flights.
My Pride? After taking inventory, I realized that I must look like the biggest dope on the planet, sprawled across several steps, holding a soda in my hand as if it were the Holy Grail. I looked around to see if anyone saw. To my astonishment, nobody did. Hah!
This begs the question: If Brad calls on a staircase, and nobody is around to see it, did it really happen?
Sure, I could have kept quiet about this embarrassing event, but I thought it might make good fodder for the class I was teaching. So I told them about it. Within mere seconds, some knucklehead* in the class posted it on Facebook, and here we are.
I’m sure that as you read about my fall, your first thought was, “I am so glad that he is okay!” I appreciate that, but now it is time to dig a little deeper.
Using this story, see if you can find a meaning, or a moral that could be used to teach a gospel message. That way, my fall will not have been in vain.
*Please post your ideas here in the blog, and not on the Facebook links. (I’ll delete them there, as to not spoil it for others.)
What have you got?