It is so good to hear from all of you. It is hard to hear that Bruiser might not make it for much longer, I am really going to miss that happy playful atmosphere in my life. It reminds me of when Bentley passed. I remember crying when I first found out. I remember when I was younger praying that he would a least last until I was gone on my mission. Just how I had prayed that Ryan Brooks not to move for the same reason. Not to longer after Bentley was put down, I remember just having s tough day. I was in need of comfort. During that time I prayed for some peace and I specifically remember seeing Bently, happy and healthy, come right up next to me. I got to spend a few minutes with him and it really helped me through that moment. I have seen him a few other occasions on my mission, especially when I needed a friend. May I recommend, Zach. That whatever my become of Bruiser and you may need some comfort, I bet your "friends" would love more than anything to take some time to be with you. I love you all so much, to quote dad "that it hurts." I look forward to the day that I can hug you all again and spend some good quality family time together. I love you all, have a great week.
This is an experience that I had last night.
Contacting the guy in the wheelchair on the street. Reminds me from earlier in my mission when I passed by a mother and her precious son in the wheelchair on my bike. As we approached them, I felt such a overwhelming love for the little boy and wanted to do something to make him happy. But as I had that feeling, I also experienced some apprehension in not knowing what I would do. So I had passed them by, but less than 30 seconds later I turned around and had my companion to come back with me to go looking for the little boy and his mom. They were nowhere to be found. I was perplexed because there was no way that they could've gone very far. So we biked for a while trying to guess where they might've been, but it was too late. This experienced has been with me for a long time. I promised that I would do better in following promptings, such as this, and reach out where I can in love.
Last night was a similar experience. This time it was a grown man. He was in a wheelchair and it was late at night, just like unto the first experience that I had. As we were driving by I only caught a glimse of his figure and him working to move down the street. In that moment I experienced that same impression. Yet again, I continued driving down the street. The interesting thing was that it left the same hole that did the previous experience. I knew that I couldn't pass by this opportunity. So I turned around, despite not knowing what I was going to do, and went back to go find this man. When we had returned back down the street, we found him still on the corner where we had left him. We got out of the car and went to go talk to him and see if there was anything that we could do for him. He was a little drunk and wasn't necessarily very interested in anything other than a few dollars. I explained that we couldn't offer much but we could offer a prayer. His reaction caught me a little off guard. He went off for a little about how his life had been hard to him and that he couldn't count on anyone. He, alike many Navaho people here, was baptized young, but eventually fell away. The reason why he was in a wheelchair was because he got shot in the leg. I made the effort to share how God was still there and that Jesus Christ suffered for us so that he can help us, but it wasn't to much use. I look back and realize that I could've approached the situation better on many different levels, including showing more love, concern, and sympathy for the situation. However, the man had clearly been through a lot and was trying to get away from his problems from his drinking and the setting was difficult to convey something that might be of use to him. After a few minutes, I realized that we couldn't do much for him so we wished him the best. As we were leaving, the youth that was with us, Luis Velasco, who is a convert of about four years and is preparing to go on a mission next year, said something that caught my attention.
After discussing with this man for about 5 minutes, we were leaving our best wishes and were making our way back to the car. When we shook hands and began to walk back, Luis said to this man "hey we love you man". When he said that, the man gave his thanks and said that's was what he needed. What I learned that night is that sometimes, what people really need is not always to hear about Jesus Christ through words, but more of feel more of Jesus Christ in their lives. I know when we can communicate more through the Spirit and impart of our love to others, that's where we can mend wounds and heal hearts, and one day, help someone back onto the path.
My new district in Flagstaff.
Abril, Aaron, and Mauricio.