If my dad were busy and needed to go out to the job sites, I would go with him. If we remained in the office, we would have meaningful talks while he poured over his drawings and plans. My dad would give me books to read, and if he were busy with clients, I might chat with his secretary.
The books he gave me to read were amazing books. They were usually from a convention he had attended about better organizing your business, growing your business, or improving yourself as a person. I enjoyed the books and read them diligently because my dad loved me enough to share them with me.
There were three authors in particular that my dad favored, and they, along with my dad; contributed greatly to the person I am today. The person on my mind this morning is Cleon Skousen. As a young woman, I did not realize how my young mind was being sculpted through his writings, but I read his books and actively apply his theories and techniques into my life.
After my husband had retired from the military, we moved our young family to another state. My husband began his career as a professional speaker and was engaged as a surrogate speaker for a tenured politician in the state to which we had relocated. There was a particular holiday in this state, and we were invited to an exclusive book signing for this politician. It was an amazing evening. Everyone who was anyone, within the state, was in attendance. As I was walking around the room, a very kind gentleman approached me and asked me if I had tried the lemon bars? “Have you tried the lemon bars?” he asked. I replied that I had not. “Oh, try them, they’re divine.”
Well, with an invitation like that, I immediately went over and selected a lemon bar. He was right. They were tart and had just a perfect sprinkle of sugar on top. The lemon bars were indeed divine. As I sat at my table savoring the wonderful lemon bar, this gentleman came over and sat beside me. “I see you took my advice. How do you like them?” he asked. “Oh, the lemon bars are indeed divine,” I replied. He grinned from ear to ear and introduced himself. “Hi, I’m Cleon Skousen.” I almost fell out of my chair. I extended my hand to him and introduced myself. I was so honored to meet a man that had contributed so much to who I was in life. We sat and talked with each other for quite some time before the evening came to an end.
As my children grew, I found that I was not satisfied with their education and began seeking out an alternative. Fortunately, there was a private school available near our home that seemed to fit very well into my criteria for their education. I enrolled my girls and was astounded when their books came home as the curriculum had been written by none other than Cleon Skousen.
My girls flourished in this school and graduated with an education that the public school system would never have delivered. Mr. Skousen again influenced my life through the lives of my darling girls. Yet, he was not finished.
I became very involved with politics over the next few years and again, found that Cleon Skousen had played a mighty hand in inspiring my core political values. He had a brilliant mind and had been generous enough to share it through his writings.
In 2006, Mr. Skousen passed away. I read his obit this morning. He was perfectly described, “W. Cleon Skousen 1913 ~ 2006 W. Cleon Skousen, prolific supporter of God, family and country, peacefully passed away at his Salt Lake City home on January 9, 2006, of natural causes incident to age, just 11 days shy of his 93rd birthday.” Had I written his obit, I would have added, “He will forever be remembered by those who not only knew him but by those who read his marvelous works and grew from his wondrous knowledge.”
Have you ever met someone who has changed your life? I have, and his gift of knowledge flows deeply through my soul and through the minds of my family. “Thank you, Mr. Skousen, for your gifts and inspiration in our lives.”
My name is Tracy Renee Lee. I am the owner and Managing Funeral Director at Queen City Funeral Home in Queen City Texas. I am an author, syndicated columnist, and co-founder of Heaven Sent, Corp. I write books and weekly bereavement articles related to understanding and coping with grief. I am the American Funeral Director of the Year Runner-Up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award. I deliver powerful messages and motivate audiences toward positive recovery. It is my life's work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on.
For additional encouragement, read other articles or watch video “Grief Briefs,” please go to my website at www.MourningCoffee.com.