This is first entry of what I hope will be hundreds, if not thousands of entries in this blog.
This is a blog about faith. My faith. A journal for my family, friends and strangers to read.
This is how I remember it. I would say it all began back in High School. The first few weeks of my Sophomore year at a brand-new High School. I don’t quite remember how it began but I started playing hacky sack with two guys. One of which would become very close friends through the years. His name was Mike. Oh yeah, he was Mormon too.
He was an ordinary boy. He had the heart of a kind spirit which you couldn’t really tell at times.
Three years went by and it was time for me to graduate. I thought I probably wouldn’t see him again because we only really hung out at school. I was wrong.
The following school year, I found myself working at a start-up internet company. There were a few people from my High School that were recruited to work there. I saw a few old faces and one day Mike showed up for a job. I spoke with him before he interviewed for the job. I had some clout with the boss so I really talked him up. He was hired that day.
It was fun and like old times. We got to work together and hang out again. Mike didn’t really change from high school. He was still brazen in his humor and the typical teenager.
About a year later we parted paths again. I left to go work for another start-up internet company a few weeks before it was sold. He left to go work at another place as well.
About a year later, our paths crossed again. We began working for another internet start-up. It was fun working with him again. We also began working on our own internet business, while doing our day jobs as well.
Plans were going good. We were working all weekend when one night another friend stopped by to visit. His name is Sam.
Somehow we began talking about life. (Actually they did, I pretty much tuned them out.) The gist of the conversation was “how doing things right was easier.” Shortcuts, although easy, were always more difficult in the long run. Things came back to you one way or the other.
I remember tuning out most of the conversation. They were talking so much I offered to take them on a little drive. We drove to the lake and basked in the darkness and light of the stars.
Before I realized it, something happened and clicked in Mike’s mind:
Doing things right was easier.
Shortcuts in life were not.
After driving back to my apartment. Mike left for home enlightened. Sam left as well, satisfied in having the conversation.
The next few days was like a whirlwind. Mike left living at his friends to go back home! He also quit working on creating our own business. He began reading and studying the Bible and Book of Mormon. He talked to his Bishop. He was going through a process that I did not understand. About six months later, he went on his mission.
Wow. Where did that come from? It was amazing how he just left. I was happy for him. A little weirded out, but happy that he was happy.
Two years goes by and I get a call from him. He was on his way home from his mission. I remember visiting him at his parents home the night he arrived back in town.
There he was. A lot skinner than I remembered him. A lot more taller than I remembered him. A lot more strange than I remembered him.
One thing that really stood out was he was using words and phrases like “trash” in place of “shit.” This coming from a guy that used a lot more colorful words in the past.
I offered him a job at my established internet company when he came back. He accepted.
There were a lot of things that I noticed when he came back:
He had an unbelievable drive to get things done.
He was very motivated and positive.
He was also very religious. He would pray before we ate lunch. He would talk often of religion.
Most importantly: He was happy! He was at peace! He acted like he knew his part in the world.
We parted ways again after a few months. My internet company wasn’t doing well at the time and Mike left to go work for another start-up. I struggled for a few more months before deciding to get a job at another start-up internet company. We parted ways again.
I remember instant messaging Mike one day, telling him about a job I found in the online classifieds. He was also looking for a new job. It turned out we were looking at the same job. When we came to the realization that we were both applying for the same job, we laughed and told each other we would recommend each other.
The job interview was scheduled 30 minutes apart in time and a street down from one another. I interviewed first and things went well. I acknowledged that Mike was applying for the same job I was and recommended him. (I also felt bad my internet company never really helped him.) Mike went on his interview after mine down the street and he acknowledged that I was applying for the same job and he recommended me. (He pointed out I had a family to take care of and really needed the money.) Even though we were interviewing for the same job, we were both hired.
The latest internet company ended up doing very well. I enjoyed working with Mike every day. It was like old times again until he decided to leave two years later to try his own business at real estate. (Are you starting to see a pattern here?)
He tried at it for six months and then asked to have his old job back.
All the while, while knowing Mike after he came back on his mission he made a large impression on me. The way he carried himself had changed. He was someone that I looked up to. He told me bits and pieces about his faith. I had seen the change in his life. My interests were peaked. We began talking more and more about his religion, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He saw enough interest in me that he submitted my name to the Mormon Missionaries.
I always jokingly tell him at work: “It’s all your fault, Mike!”