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Archive for November, 2009|Monthly archive page

Stranded in the Emerald City

In and Everything, God, Life on November 13, 2009 at 6:39 pm

Date: November 13, 2009 10:39:57 AM PST
Subject: Stranded in the Emerald City

I was leaving Wal-Mart one raining and very cold day, being very glad to be in my car with the heat blasting. As I stopped at the intersection, thats where I meet Ryan and Laura. They were sitting on the curb, Ryan was holding a cardboard sign that read “Stranded, need money for food.” or something to that extent. Honestly I never read it, I just saw two kids in the cold and in the rain. As I stopped, Ryan came up and asked for some change so they could buy some sleeping bags. I didn’t really get any sort of heavenly feeling or word from God to help them. I just told them to get in the car. It just seemed very obvious thats what I should do.
They threw their bags in the car and hoped in. I asked what I could do for them and they began to tell me their story. They had been hitch-hiking and Hobo’ing their way on the backs of boxcars since Athens, Georgia. They had just jumped off the train from Atlanta and now were in Greenwood and didn’t quite know where they were. They were trying to make their way to Savannah, Georgia and was running out of money to get there. I drove them to the Greenwood Motel where they were had stayed the night prior and where they were going to have to vacate. I offered to put them up somewhere a little safer and we drove to the Jamison Inn. Now, Ryan and Laura hadn’t asked for anything other than money for sleeping bags. I gave them what ever money I had in my wallet when we meet. And I just couldn’t fathom them out in this weather, much less sleeping in it. So I payed for a couple of days at the Jamison Inn and told the guy behind the counter if there were any other expenses occurred from their stay I would come back and cover it. Then I realized what I just said. I was living the parable.
We went up the to the room and they thanked me endlessly and I was very glad to have helped them. It was the best thing I could think to do for them. A clean, warm bed. I gave them some numbers of some local ministries they could call and maybe get some help and if anything get a ride to Savannah. I did everything I could to help them help themselves. I didn’t try to kill myself helping them. Though at the time I was finically hurting, but I knew it was the right thing to do and God would take care of me. I gave them my number too and told to give me a buzz and let me know how everything worked out. Secretly in my heart I was hoping they wouldn’t call and that would mean I wouldn’t have to do anything else. A day passed and I got a phone call.
It was Ryan, they had called all those numbers and talked to a lot of churches. No one wanted to help them. He talked with church secretaries and voicemails. The churches said their were other ministries that they supported that would help them. But the buck kept being passed down the line. He then said he had been back down at Walmart trying to raise funds. The police finally told him to move on or be arrested after the second day. I started to get upset. I mean, I had done my part, where was the body of Christ on this one? Ryan, wasn’t upset at all. He then quoted a summarization of scripture to me, “God will take care of those who don’t worry, it’ll be alright.”
They had been using the computer in the lobby of the Jamison Inn and found that they could get two tickets to Savannah via Amtrak in Columbia for a grand total of $70 bucks. They were $30 short. I felt really bad, I was being selfish. I didn’t want to go the distance. But then God got a hold of me and reminded me that I had started a relationship with these people. I had to go all the way. I talked to mom and she gave me some money to help them. So Ryan, Laura and myself with all their possessions got in my silver tarsus and went to catch a 1am train in Columbia.
I learned so much from them on that trip. We all had a really good time just talking, hanging out and getting to know each other. I was just really honest with them and they were with me. They told me, they didn’t consider themselves “Homeless” they were “Travelers” and it was a life decision they had made to live this way. Ryan, had traveled all over though various means and said he would “Fly the Sign” as he called it, only when it was really necessary. He just tried to make his way the best he knew. I have to say I really admired his patience and ability not to worry. I envied it honestly. Somebody asked me if I “Shared the Gospel” with them. I felt I was just being the gospel, They asked questions and I answered them and even shared my frustrations and struggles with them. I was just honest and because of that, I think I gained two new friends. Two friends that I truly hope to see again and hang out with. I trust God that He used me in whatever way they needed. Cause I certainly know He used them to change ME.
I know what your thinking at this point. These people choose this life, why should I even help them? I think we all put a lot of stuff in the way of doing what we should be doing all the time. A lot of us are simply scared or just tired of getting burnt by people. Especially when it comes to helping the poor and yes there are there are a lot of reasons not to do anything. But Christ was pretty straight forward concerning the poor. He didn’t give exceptions or situations not to do it. What it comes down to is a simple trust issue with God. Yeah, you could get burnt, you could lose money or you could even die. But don’t let that change your ability to do the right thing in following Christ. Yes, their’s a lot of them and honestly you can’t help them all. But you can help the ones right in front of you.

I didn’t see two kids hitch-hiking their way through life,
I just saw two kids in the cold and in the rain.

-Magic Dave



Post Chicago

In and Everything, Film, God, Life, Prayer, Tech, The Universe on November 1, 2009 at 8:50 pm

Date: November 1, 2009 2:50:23 PM PST
Subject: Post Chicago

As October was drawing to a close, I decided to do something I had be threaten to do for a while. To go see the Rivera Brothers up in Chicago. So I called Matt Rivera up, flew to Chicago and made it happen. Bam! Man, what a great trip, I’d never been to Chicago before and I enjoyed it immensely. I meet Matt’s roommates Peter and Cade, affectionally know as the “Boys on Montrose.” We explored the city of Chicago, visited the set of Dark Knight, hung out at Columbia Art & Design College, played around with cameras and green screens and the boy’s treated me as their own. I was going through some hard times while I was up there and those guys helped me get through it. I’ll never forget it.
I had only a few things on my agenda for Chicago, well actually just two things. For you see, firstly, I played Microsoft Flight Simulator like nobody’s business when I was a kid. The starting airfield when you booted up some MFS was, Miegs Field in Downtown Chicago. The second point of interest for me was the Adler Planetarium which happened to be at the end of ole’ 36 at Meigs Field. So me and Matt took the “L” down to Northerly Island. We went to the planetarium and sat through “The SkyWacthers of Africa” which was awesome and a great reference for our current project “The SkyWatcher.” I really enjoyed the Planetarium, which had a number of really old telescopes and other astronomy gadgets. I could have spent all day in there honestly. Then we went to what was left of Mieg’s Field. Sadly the airstrip had been bulldozed in the middle of the night by the governor of Chicago sometime back in the early 2000’s and apparently under shady circumstances. Now all that remained was the main building and control tower. It was disheartening but I was still glad to be there. Me and Matt walked around the island looking for the remains of the strip. We found some material that might have very well been part of the strip. I took a piece of it and kept it as my own, I’d like to think it was apart of the strip where I learned how to fly as a kid. It was fun to walk around the island and I suppose I got to go into areas I never would have been able to if the airport had been active. But, “irreguardless” I was glad to finally stand on that holy aviation ground and share that moment with my friend and brother Matt Rivera.
The Boy’s on Montrose happened to be a throwing a house party for Halloween while I was up there. Now, I was never much of a party guy, but I have to say I had a really awesome time and had the chance to meet a lot of awesome peeps who were in film school and/or worked at the Apple store. Actually that number was more like 1 to 1, and speaking of Apple. I got to hang out with Matthew at the Downtown Apple store, for about… 6 hours or so. I was just glad to be there and see Matt in his element, I took in several seminars, learned way too much about iLife and got a genius appointment. My iPhone had a speck of dusk under the screen since, well forever really. Apple replaced the screen for me there on the spot. I promptly got another speck of dusk under the screen a week later. Ah well, it wasn’t that big of deal for me to begin with. I just wanted the full Chicago Apple Experience. Queue, Peter and Matt laughing. I then spent several hours riding across and around chicago with Matthew to find overhauls for his Halloween costume. For Matt and his friend Kevin were dressing up as Mario and Luigi and ended up looking amazing. Peter dressed up as the Homeless Green Lantern, Sam Rivera as Han Solo and Cade as Captain Underpants. I was boring and made use of a USSR shirt I bought years ago and was the poster boy of the Russian workforce. It was good to hang out with Rivera Bros once again, we made some progress on The SkyWatcher project and talked of new and wonderful ideas and schemes.
As the party winded down around 4am, the thoughts of leaving began to overwhelm me. Granted, my flight was at 8am and Matt and I had to leave at 6am, but I wasn’t worried about that. I simply didn’t want to leave, because I had seen my element and my passion. I saw where I would have been. I really knew what I had to do and most importantly what God had been telling me to do for sometime. I had to pursue Film, it was the only thing that always fit with me and I had compromised on that vision for sometime. More importantly I had grieved the Holy Spirit with what He specifically set on my heart to do. I had been too afraid and let myself be concerned with the expectations others had set for me. I know God’s timing is perfect, but it still hurts to knowing how I simply didn’t obey or perhaps even more didn’t fully obey. As I walked through the airport, something caught my eye, it was a cap with word Chicago tastefully printed on it. I liked the style, picked it up and had a thought.
Everything from this point on, is POST-CHICAGO and this cap would be my “ebenezer”, my stone in the field. The reminder that God had brought me thus far and would not abandon me on my journey.
No matter how how bad I felt about disobeying God, I had to just trust that God knows exactly what He’s doing. In my successes and in my every present failures.

I have to goto California, work in the trenches of the Film Industry and grow the Kingdom.

-Magic Dave

Chicago 09 Pics