One of the best sacrament talk stories ever

A guy in our ward told one of the best sacrament talk stories I have heard, and I wanted to share it with you. He was asked several years ago to volunteer to drive from Provo out to the “Tree of Utah” sculpture in the middle of the salt flats along I-80. This sculpture was done by a Swedish artist, and apparently a high-level Swedish official was coming out to visit it, and my friend was asked to drive there to make sure the area around the sculpture was clean.

He spent an hour or so cleaning up beer cans and other garbage, which he loaded in bags in his car. And then he had to contemplate driving back to Provo. He could take the easy way or the hard way.

The “easy” way was to cross over from the west-bound lane of I-80 through the salt flats in the median over to the east-bound lane. The hard way was to drive to Wendover (the next exit), which he estimated at 25 miles away. So, by taking the “easy” way he saved 50 miles of driving.

Only one problem with the “easy” way: he had noticed during the tedium of driving out there that there were lots of tracks of people who drove onto the median and got stuck. But there were also tracks of people who had successfully driven across.

So, he first tried walking out on the median. It seemed firm enough. He drove his car just a few feet onto the salt mud, and it seemed fine. So, he decided to drive a bit more, and of course he got stuck. He tried everything: pushing from behind, putting boards underneath the tires. He even put on snow chainson his tires. No go. He was completely stuck.

Just as he was about to despair, a truck with a few people apparently from Mexico (they only spoke Spanish, which our hero did not speak) drove up and offered to help. They attached a chain to his car and dragged him out. He then drove the extra 50 miles and made it successfully back to Provo.

My friend made several points through this story:

1)Taking the “easy” way often causes you to get stuck in sin. Taking the apparently difficult but longer path will help you not get stuck.
2)You can take a few tentative steps into sin, but chances are you will get stuck.
3)Sometimes you cannot get away from sin without the help of others, either other people or the Savior, whose grace is sufficient to help you escape.

I noticed one other thing when writing this post: the Tree of Utah is also called the “Tree of Life.” Deep. Very deep.

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

8 thoughts on “One of the best sacrament talk stories ever

  1. If this story were used in a priesthood meeting, the teacher would have to gauge how long to let the resulting conversation about off-road driving continue.

  2. Pingback: You Should Be | Taking the easy way out

  3. I love real-world examples that don’t sound like they came from the latest edition of “Especially for Mormons”.

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