Where Are You From?

mark-hopper-color-2x2By Pastor Mark Hopper

A few months ago, my wife’s sister and her husband invited us to go with them on a cruise to southern Alaska.  Although our 45th wedding anniversary was in June, we delayed our celebration until our cruise in August.

We enjoyed our Alaska adventure and saw many wonderful sights.  The Inland Passage is lined with beautiful forests that come right down to the water’s edge.  We saw whales, dolphins and Bald Eagles.  We also saw a glacier that flowed out of the mountains right down to the sea.  It was a remarkable sight!

In addition to all of the sightseeing and shopping, we also met passengers from all over the world.  Most of the people we met were from the United States but there were also a few from Europe, Asia and Latin America.

Every time we got on an elevator or stood in a line, I would ask people “Where are you from”?  Most people were quick to reply.  I was surprised at how many were from Florida.  I thought they already had a lot of cruise ships in Florida but people reminded me that they don’t have glaciers and icebergs there!

We also met a lot of passengers who were from California, including one couple who lived just down the road in Yorba Linda.

The biggest surprise was when we met a woman and her family who used to attend our church in Diamond Bar!  I didn’t recognize her at first but when she told us her name I knew exactly who she was.

What are the odds of meeting someone you know in an elevator on a cruise ship that was sailing to Alaska? What is the likelihood of meeting someone who knows you on a ship filled with 2,500 passengers?

We certainly enjoyed our cruise to Alaska and we enjoyed seeing so many amazing things.  But, we also enjoyed meeting so many interesting people from all over the world!

Let me encourage you to take time to greet people you meet on your next trip or vacation.  You may be surprised at who you meet.  They will be glad you did.


Pastor Mark Hopper is from the Evangelical Free Church of Diamond Bar, 3255 South Diamond Bar Blvd.  Sunday services are 9 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.  For more information, call (909) 594-7604 or visit Efreedb.org.

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