I love inspirational stories like that. I think I may have even read that story when the December 2006 Ensign was first published, but, at that time, I had no idea that the author of that story would make such a huge impact in my life, not only because of her books, but because of that story as well.
I had a similar experience to Stephenie's and her story just brings to mind my own feelings when I experienced it. It helps remind me of what I have instead of focusing on what I don't have!
My husband and I were at a Taco Bell in the dead of winter. (It was about two years ago.) A man came into the restaurant and because of the way he looked, I immediately dismissed him. He looks very ragged, scraggly, dirty, and I pictured in my mind someone who was on meth or something like that. The thoughts I had were very rude and critical.
My husband and I were already eating our food when he sat down to eat his. My husband noticed that he only had a small cup of water and one small taco. At this time, I was still thinking about how awful he looked when my husband took a chalupa that Taco Bell had given us by mistake to him. We had tried to give it back to Taco Bell, but they said that since it was already made to just keep it. When my husband handed the chalupa to this man, his eyes lit up! He no longer looked like a vagabond to me. Instead, he looked like a human being, who hardly had anything to his name.
I immediately felt ashamed and realized that he was homeless and looked the way he did because he had nothing. Who am I to judge someone as I had judged that man? I'm nobody! Ever since my husband's example, I have always tried to look at people differently.