“Listen up” ( May 4, 2017 )

This is my new friend Erik. I started driving around looking for someone to spend some positive time with at around noon today. The weather was already 103 degrees so it took awhile before I saw Erik flying a sign on the corner asking for some help. By the time I had pulled over and started walking in his direction, Erik had sat down on some shade to escape the brutal heat, if only for a couple of minutes. I told Erik about “#SelflessSelfie” and asked if I could buy him some food, give him a little cash and just have a conversation with him for a bit. I think Erik was a bit surprised when I asked this, most people are. Its unfortunate, that in todays society, people are almost taken a-back by someones random generosity. I brought Erik a meal from a local fast food place he knew of as well as a gallon of cold water ( he told me he was running low ). When I came back Erik was happy to see me and graciously drank some much needed cold water. After talking for about 40 minutes or so, this is what I learned.
Erik is 21 years old and was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. Growing up Erik was very involved in tennis and lacrosse. He said for many years his weekends were consumed with tennis tournaments and training. At one point Erik was ranked #22 in all the U.S for juniors tennis. At the age of 16 roughly, he became burnt out on all the sports. Partly because his parents pushed him so hard, and partly because he was getting different interests as he got older. Erik became interested in all types of music and wanted to become a “audio engineer”. He learned several instruments such as the keyboard and guitar and headed on his path to working in the music industry. Erik used to make beats on his home computer and sell them on a website called “Soundcloud”. Even though his phone was broken Erik was able to show me a couple of the songs he had produced, they were fantastic! The music he makes ranges from hip-hop to funk. Erik worked in a restaurant back in Tucson to save up for his schooling and future. He started as a bus boy and eventually worked his way up in the kitchen. After saving some money Erik was accepted into a audio engineering school here in the Valley. Unfortunately, Erik didn’t know anyone in the area so he had to find some roommates on craigslist to live with. After moving in with these people his life started to take a turn for the worse. He ended up getting involved in partying and doing drugs with these new roommates of his. His poor decisions led to him losing the place he lived and his schooling as well. Erik Hasn’t been able to get back on his feet since. He isn’t using hard drugs or hanging out with those negative people anymore, so thats a plus.
Erik has a fiance and most nights they are able to stay on the floor of a friends laundry room for 5 dollars a night. They both want kids one day when they can provide a positive environment for the baby. I showed Erik my instagram and he recognized “Paul” a man I had met weeks prior. Erik wants to hopefully hitch-hike to Colorado or somewhere cooler for the summer. I enjoyed my time with Erik today. Please pray for him and his wife. He truly is a genuine and kind hearted person. Talking to others and encouraging them will only bring forth positivity. Thinking about it does nothing, take action on your thoughts. Be a shining light and good example for others so that they can one day do the same for someone else. Its what Jesus would do.

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