“Lila”

I began to watch this a little while ago. I noticed, it has really great coloration, the mood is so genuine and so engaging, it’s so very sweet, but still left a lot to be answered.

I had a friend named Lila once, and this girl reminds me of her. She is quirky, cute, funny, and so very innocent in so many ways. Well, I lost that friendship last year after my motorcycle wreck. Things were already hard enough to mount that on top of the stack that weighed so heavily. It was because of my anger, my bitterness, and because of a moment when I again wanted to blame someone and disdained myself. I regret loosing her in my life, and I hope to one day be able to speak to her again.

The Lila in this short, is so very similar to the one I knew. I think that what attracts us as people to others often times is the parts we see in them that we identify with, seeing those qualities in ourselves. Either that, or we see qualities in them that we want to identify with, we often see someone we want to be. This has happened to me quite a lot recently, both the first and the latter; I see so much of who I used to be in others as well as seeing parts of who I want to be.

As I watched this, I remembered who I was as a child growing up. I remembered the kid in my Facebook profile picture that is laughing with my little brother. I remember being bright eyed and always a dreamer. I wanted “to be nice to everyone and have everyone be my friend!” in such a naive way. I saw everything as wondrous and amazing. Everything in life carried so much beauty in spite of all the chaos that whirled around me day in and day out. I didn’t care about the fights, or the beatings, or the bullying, or the embarrassment or torment I lived out in those many moments. Somehow, I was able to block out the real world. I painted a picture over everything I saw, seeing the world as it could be, as it would exist in a perfect world display of wonder, beauty, peace, joy, and so much more. Love is a word that strikes me with a thunderous blast of an explosive vision. Love….is what I saw. I saw light, and splendor within everything around me. The sad part, was that not everyone got to see that world the way I did. My sister and little brother saw that world with me in many moments. I used to stay up late with them as I would look around the room for tokens to steal for the epic bedtime story I was creating as shot the little gears in my mind at a million miles an hour. I was completely making it up as told the bedtime epic.

These are the moments I live for…a moment of clarity, realization, recollection, a reconnecting to the child I once was. I miss my little brother, I miss my friend Lila, I miss my family from which I’ve been running from for 19 years for wanting to escape the real life canvas I didn’t have enough imaginary paint to cover. I live for the moments of growth, and advancement, the moments where I have an opportunity to take a step forward and look around me as I do, all the while enjoying the journey. Then I get to tell someone….why??? For the same reason I tell every story, whether on film, digital format, or script……because I must, it’s what I was made to do, it’s my design.

I watched this and cried as I rediscovered within my own heart a soft place that exists that I tried to bury in a pile of pain. Well, here’s to painting a different picture and holding it in the place it belongs, where it will touch a life and create a loving change.

Ignite a Fire

-Eddie’s Echo

 

 

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Eddie’s on Fire

Eddie's on Fire

Here’s to Igniting Fire across the world.

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We are meant to sharpen one another as Iron Sharpens Iron

In life, we are presented with so many different choices, so many options, and the roads that we may travel are too numerous to be 100% certain of which one to take, until we find out the law of hind site is so truly appropriate in the majority of the decisions we’ve made.

 

I am bouncing back with a raging fire from what seemed like a hopeless situation, but I am still experiencing the fall off from the atomic like blast that took place in my life when I chose to move away and chase a dream that turned out to be a pipe dream. Though the world changing disappointment is not something easy to get passed, I’m doing it, and I’m doing it with all the tenacity and zeal that I can muster. But there’s a tricky situation I’m dealing with currently that is once again slowing me down….another dream.

 

What dream am I talking about? Well, we all of us at one time dream of “being someone great” or “achieving something great”, but how many of us consider the things in life that so many take for granted…a dream. This specific dream is that of Loving like I’ve never loved before. “Why is that a dream dude?” “Alright man, did you pull me into a read that involves some sappy story about how you’re tired of the life experience we all go thru in relationships?” YUP! That’s exactly what I want to write about, and the reason is because relationships impact our lives more greatly than most care to admit. 

 

What is it that you do when you wake in the morning as a child and greet your parents? What is it that you experience when you walk into the classroom and friends and teachers begin to interact with you? What is it that we walk out when we as adolescents discover when we begin to feel and experience the strange push and pull of hormones and feelings? This….is the effects of the relationships we have within our lives, and it’s inevitable. We are constantly in a relationship with our parents, our leaders, our teachers, and our friends, as well as with those of the opposite or same sex. We are caught in an intermingling of relationships that shape us, grow us, and challenge us for good or even to our detriment. The key to relationships that I’ve found as one to pay attention to with a keen discernment, is whether or not those relationships will cause us to grow and become the highest caliber individuals we can become. I once read, as iron sharpens iron, in the same way one person sharpens another. I have to stop and think in regards to each relationship I have in my life and truly consider, “Is this person sharpening me?” What this means is simply the following, if the people you choose to have relationship with in your day to day life don’t grow you, if they aren’t moving in the same direction as you at the pace you’re moving, if they don’t EDIFY you, why are they in relationship with you? 

 

I recently had the amazing opportunity to make a new friend that created a desire in me to want to become the best possible me. This person I met had something within them that illuminated my heart, my mind, and sparked a fire in me causing a drive like I haven’t had in a long while. They without knowing became my number one reason to succeed, to press into difficult situations and conquer all of my personal demons triumphantly without any regrets and with no holding back. What happened though? This individual didn’t get the same fire from me, I wasn’t able to be what they needed in order for them to look at life the same way they helped me to see it. I failed in that relationship, and it hurts me so deeply to know that I cannot fulfill the mandate of being strength and inspiration for someone else. I have a hard time dealing with this reality, and it’s tearing me apart emotionally causing me to want to tap out, though I won’t.

 

So what happened, was it me? Was it that, maybe I tried too hard for other things neglecting the needs that they had? Was I not enough of a motivation, or positive enough, or maybe I didn’t give them the love they needed as a leader and a friend? I’m not sure where I failed, but I don’t want to fail again, I can’t live with that. 

 

I guess what I’m trying to say is that no matter what we do in this life, unless we completely isolate ourselves we will always be in many different types of relationships. With each relationship we are given the opportunity to stuart, we must always do everything we can to cultivate the very best in the other person, making sure that we see the reality of who they are as the very best qualities that this person is capable of. To focus on their flaws instead of simply acknowledging they are there and moving right on to their strengths…will hurt us and them. We benefit so much more from building on that persons strengths and as a well draws water from the depths of the earth, we can draw out the most unfathomable beauty from the very core of this person, no matter who it is. Thru-out this process we are challenged, we are refined, and all of our spiritual and emotional muscles will be exercised and strengthened. What we choose to see in that person will be what we become and what we give to them and others. I’ve said many times to people dear to my heart that what we allow to come THRU us BECOMES us. So, let that light come thru you to that person, even with all the challenges that may come either of your way. It will act as iron sharpening iron, shaping you both and making you fortified strength for one another, able to withstand the hard blows life gives us in many moments. And another thing, is to realize that the imperfections in metal are what sharpen the other, as well their imperfections are what sharpen YOU. Live a life of unrestrained love with a passionate fire that ignites the very Spirit within everyone you come in contact with. Signing off….chew on that a bit. ;)

 

Ignite a Fire

 

Eddie CImage

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FREEDOM!!! Please READ & SHARE

(Please check out the link at the bottom)

For many years I have lived a life that plays out in a rhythmic pattern of dynamic pain & pleasure. From having everything I ever truly needed as far as food, clothing, shelter, family & friendship to lacking peace, harmony, affirmation, real love, comfort & security. I could tell a story of the battles I’ve waged in my heart & mind, but the bottom line is that I’ve overcome. When I think of my life in retrospect & have to say out of conviction….I was blessed overall very abundantly. I have to always consider the cross & the price that was payed for me in order to live free & to truly experience the pleasure of freedom & rest. Unfortunately, some don’t have that privilege, nor will they unless someone pays a price for them, standing in place of where they now stand acting as a voice for them, because their voice needs to be heard.

We as human beings have inalienable rights that should never be taken away, & among those rights is the right to live free. To live free is a gift that many take for granted, simply because they weren’t the ones to pay the price for that freedom. We don’t stop to consider most of the time, that people died & are still dying so that we can be free to work, purchase, provide for,choose success, educate our families & ourselves, or even just to enjoy the fruits of this earth.  

These people don’t have those rights, they are The Pygmy people of the African Congo, & they are currently being enslaved, beaten & abused, as well as being eaten by cannibals who believe their flesh has magical properties. I wanted to post this video because it just occurred to me to do so. I thought of the emotion this scene evokes, & how when a man is given the choice to save himself from pain, he instead chooses to endure simply to pay a price for those that follow, that they may fully understand what it is to pay a price for something beautiful, something precious & so very empowering to all mankind…..FREEDOM!

 

FIGHT FOR THE FORGOTTEN!!!

 

Ignite a Fire

-Eddie C.

Please check out this link….http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/fight-for-the-forgotten

 

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“Betrayal is so…

“Betrayal is something that others do to you, bitterness is something you do to yourself. Let it go. Forgiveness unblocks your blessings.”

Unknown

I love this, it has been my experience, and I know because I have forgiven, I have been blessed…and set free.

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Well, here’s to coming up in the world!

Some say there is no hope, yet inside they are truly hoping with all they have. Some see no healing in the near future, yet they are crying inside for someone to touch their hearts and set them free. Some don’t know where to turn, yet the very next opportunity that comes their way is the best thing that could happen to them.

Only a month and a half ago I was going from couch to couch, from couch to air mattress. From air mattress to bus stop, to train station, and back to a couch. I was wondering how I was going to eat every day, and went through so much stress due to not having a family to call mine. I was riddled with guilt, self loathing, and a sense that everyone who WAS in my immediate surroundings was so involved in their trivial pursuits that they didn’t notice that I was dying inside; all the while praying for literal death of the body. I was in such a state of victim mentality that the morose nature became an extreme drag to anyone that tried to help me get on my feet. There were a few folks that saw a bright light flicker for long periods from the depth of the endless abyss of despair. One was a man who turned out to be a great friend named Ray. Ray was a ray of sunshine in my everyday monotony. He was so optimistic with such a positive approach on even the most bleak situations. He tended to exude an essence of leave it to Beaver and Andy Griffith. It was a very wholesome atmosphere in his home, and I loved crashing on his couch for the short 2 weeks I was there. His kindness and casual yet profound friendship was enough to cause me to begin to look at the world from a different set of eyes. I am so thankful for this guy. Staying with him was ultimately what caused me to consider making a drastic change in my outlook, as well as my all around situation in life.

Ray made a suggestion to answer the beckoning of a cousin I never knew in California. He said that the very worse that could happen, is that I go back home to Texas if the opportunity he promised didn’t work out, and I thought, HE’S RIGHT. So to California I went. It was costly, and scary being that I knew nothing of the west coast nor did I know anyone here, or what I was going to be doing. But when I arrived, the love I felt from two people who never even knew me was so tremendous that I couldn’t go anywhere regardless of how it turned out.

I have been working for a non-profit organization for free for going on a month and a half. I have been titled Director of Ministry Development after the senior staff began to realize my potential to completely revolutionize the way that they operate as well as create a vision that would ignite a fire in every single person in this small congregation and charter school. I have been networking with a series of people to begin a process of restoration to a cathedral in the original suburb of Los Angeles that was built in 1923. I have recruited a paint company, landscapers, as well as mural and graffiti artists to begin to put a new face on the facilities as well as involve those who take part in this non-profit to have a purpose to serve and show love to the community and church family here.

I have been given a very strong sense of significance, and a new purpose for living. I went threw a process of therapy where I had to forgive my hurts from the past that I strongly believe got me to the state I was in before coming to California, this allowed for a significant amount of personal growth. The growth facilitated an extreme amount of stress relief and allowed me to begin to order my thoughts, and to create an action plan on a day to day, and week to week basis in order to structure a mission as well as a vision to begin a new career path falling within the humanitarian field. It has been a very hard road, but has also been more rewarding than I ever dreamed of.

I say all this to highlight the results of what took place in just a couple of short weeks while staying as a transient on someones couch. Thank you Ray, and may God bless you for being salt and light to a guy who just needed a brief glimpse of how beautiful life can truly be if we just make a few minor adjustments to our perception and how we choose to approach the world as we know it; then cutting loose the chains that weigh us down, we can begin to once again fly as we we’re intended to. Love ya man.

Ignite a Fire

Eddie C

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This is a couple sleeping in Santa Monica

This is a couple sleeping in Santa Monica

A bike is car…the grass is a bed…at least they have each other.

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A New Change…A New Beggining.

“I have been rescued!” This was my first thought when I heard the offer to come to California and have a fresh start. At first it seemed too good to be true, and kind of still is too good to be true, but I’m going anyway.

I am no longer going from couch to couch with the occasional stalemate as to where exactly it is I’m going to sleep or how I’m going to eat. I have been given an opportunity to travel to Los Angeles to start getting my heart and mind right, to then do exactly what I wish someone would have done for me, I am going to help those who are beat down by life and lost much to get back up on their feet in entirety, to the best of my ability with whatever resources I am given. It feels good, but only in contrast to the huge battle taking place in my mind.

Last night I was completely shattered. I thought of all that I had invested, all that I had sacrificed, of all that I wished I could have done and could have seen to completion. It tore me apart little by little, gnawing at my every reach for hope and optimism. I was crazy in love with an amazing woman, who turned out to move on more quickly than the truth would allow for, my father and mother haven’t had anything to do with me in almost a year and my mother specifically 3 years. I have a hand full of friends that loved on me and helped me out, but me leaving is like another “see ya later”, which may be asking too much. No one was hear to see me off, but it’s cool, my boy Sam brought me to the airport and prayed for me, giving me comfort and strength. I thank him for that, as insignificant as it could have been for him, it meant the world to me. I have to be honest….I’m completely terrified.

I have so many reservations about going to California. If you don’t make it there, it’s a lot harder to deal with than Texas. I have no one there except my cousin and his word, only second to God and His word. I guess that should be enough, but for some reason within my selfish self, it’s not. I have a vision, a huge dream, and a calling I can’t run away from to reach the most broken type of people, those with nothing; why isn’t it enough? I am too old to be experiencing such child like fear and apprehension, all these reservations and loneliness. Why am I so depressed? All night last night I cried, until passed 3:30 in the morning. I was very suicidal and psychotic all at the same time. I need a fresh renewal of hope and joy.

I need to express this publicly because this is something that someone else is going through right now. Many people are struggling with this, and it’s a reality that we cannot be shy about and hide into a closet of uncomfortable things we’d rather not touch. Anyone who is sleeping at a bus stop like I have done, or in a car, or moving from couch to couch is going through this 100 fold more strongly than what I have expressed here. The hope countered by despair, the numb and misleading suicidal and depressing thoughts and emotions, the desperation and confusion coupled with tumultuous and violent bouts of rage and bitterness. It’s so much harder than any of you who have not lived it can imagine, especially when something like this happens for a prolonged period or repeatedly over years like it has happened to me. I am by no means looking for pity or lament, neither remorse nor apologies. What I desire is to create an awareness from a first hand account of what a person actually goes through within life experiences like mine or to any degree beyond what I lived. I ask that you as the reader choose to have compassion for those you may know who are facing this up hill battle, and do all you can to help. I’m requesting that you use your imagination to convey to your heart in as much detail as you can vividly visualize and feel what it would be like to go through this. To say no more, it is so exhausting that it takes you to the point of questioning whether things will change, and whether one should just throw in the towel.

Obviously, I choose to march on, partly due to some quality in me that causes me to be persistent and hope for the impossible. Another part of the equation is an incessant reminder of what I was told all my life. “Little Eddie….God designed you, to change the world.” So many of us have heard that, so many have been promised so much and have been encourage to chase a dream. I choose to embrace that in my darkest of hours, it won’t let go…and neither will I.

Thanks for reading.

Ignite a Fire

Eddie C

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It is far and very few between who are TRULY Homeless.

Since January of 2010 I have been in various Homeless situations ranging from crashing on couches to sleeping against a tree at a rail station. I have truly begun seeing that in this country of The United States of America I can never TRULY be homeless.

You see, there are a couple of factors to consider that make it almost impossible for me to be at a complete dead end. One of these things is my faith in God. Without my faith, in those moments when someone comes to the end of themselves, as well as every other rescue line in their lives, I would have never made it. The other thing is, my network of beloved friends and family with whom I would have never made it. Lastly, is the very specific set of skills and talents I have been blessed with.

Faith is a very controversial and a very personal thing. It stems from personal belief, and a desire to know and understand something beyond what we know and comprehend in any human sense. It is the substance by which we choose to adhere to something beyond this life ever searching for a greater truth, a greater possibility. Even now, my faith is being tested, and shaken in every way. I have faith that I can make it, I can also grow from the knowledge that no one can take from me, but I don’t have the greatest faith in my circumstances right at this moment in life.
I don’t have too much faith in people other than myself. What does this mean? It means that I believe I have surrendered myself to something greater than myself, a cause, a purpose, to people, and to God above all. Even though I have issues with people around me, I have faith that God will bring me through this like many other things in my life, inspite of myself. I also believe though that it will be a lonely venture. I have no faith in the people I love and care for the most, because they have no faith in me. They have no faith for my relationship with them, or for the place I could hold in their life. Regardless of possibilities, they have no faith for the future.

What does this have to do with Homelessness? It has everything to do with how a person manages their thoughts and emotions, because the reality of this is pervasive. It makes it much harder to deal with, in that this is what most Homeless people live in.

“I have faith in God and myself, but not people.”
How many people who ask for change on the side of the road hold up a sign that says,

“Hungry, God Bless You.”
Or
“Anything helps, God Bless.”

You may think they don’t, but I have NEVER spoken to yet one single person out on the streets who doesn’t choose to reach for something higher than themselves. This faith outside of men and women, this faith that goes beyond human dependence and interaction, is what gets me through. But truly, I have friends that I can count on I’ve found, so I am truly never without a home.

When someone has even one true friend who is in a better position in life to where they can give something, not because it’s comfortable, or easy, but because the opportunity is there, this person has more than they could ever dream. They should treasure such a person as a prize to be fought for. I have given when I was doing well, and had over abundance flowing in my life, but the challenge was to give when I had nothing. I have done this even recently, given away what little I had; in return, true friends did the same for me & I love them for it because as hard as it’s been, I appreciate it even more so.

I am hurting at present. I am actually breaking apart due to a really intense loss I’ve recently suffered. Someone I thought I would have the pleasure of sharing life with is gone, and I don’t foresee a healing from this anytime soon, but I have faith in my ability to process, in my ability to task orient and stay busy in this up hill climb towards helping others.
So it is my skills that I have faith in, my abilities, whether innate or learned through being tried by fire. I have faith in what I have applied before that has gotten me through. And I will continue to apply it time and again until these processes and exercises are no longer sufficient.

Being that I have reached the levels of experience and success that I have reached, I don’t know that I could ever be completely destitute, at least not in this culture and society. With the brain I’ve been blessed with, and the wisdom I’ve had imparted to me, I don’t know that I could ever be truly Homeless.

Very few of us are truly Homeless when we really stop and consider our faith, our company of people, and the skillsets and talents that could take us from the ditch to the penthouse. We need to learn as I am now learning the art and power of gratitude. To be grateful for what we do have, though it be what clothing we have on and our knowledge and experience, is a starting point that many don’t have the capacity to reach without someone else to lift them up. Give someone something to be grateful for, especially if you’re not TRULY Homeless.

Ignite a Fire

Eddie C

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A quick transparent update..

So in the recent weeks, I have been pretty up beat and hopeful. Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse, partly due to constant changes and having to constantly adapt to a new environment. It is very stressful at times to wonder what’s going to happen next, and to constantly wonder where I will stay or how I will eat. I try not to concern myself with even the most essential necessities, I just can’t handle more stress besides the imposed daily ration.

I recently acquired a job, to have it not work out because of transportation issues. I’ve been so disappointed and somewhat shell shocked by yet another let down, that I had to literally take a mental sabbatical for half a day. I couldn’t do anything but blare classical music and walk down the side of the highway stopping often to sit against the concrete median. I was almost at the point of throwing my hands up in the air and saying to heck with it, but I just kept walking and contemplating my purpose. I questioned the purpose of this lesson even more incessantly, I thought it was a more valid consideration considering a beneficial thought process. It was really rough upstairs in the ol’ noggin. I had to stop and sit for a while just to find hope amidst all the tears streaming down my face. I felt so exhausted, and mostly trembled in the panic and desperation of wanting to live. I say that, because I have been surviving, not even coming close to truly living.

I have to say, there is a lot of time where I am in the company of some host, allowing me to crash on their couch for a night or two; these moments being some of the nicest times I’ve had in years, they are very real, and very humble. I learn quite a bit, and share even more than I can help to share within these short stays. I’m staying with this friend Ray, and he is in between roomates. His cable and internet are shut off, so most of the time we are at his apartment sitting, talking in a big empty room. I have to say that staying with this homie is a really big blessing for me, I get to process and interact on a profoundly intellectual and introspective level. Also, I get the opportunity to share whatever wisdom I’ve been given however limited that may be. It in turn allows Ray to sow seed into my life where life can give him back a larger portion than that which he gave out. He’s teaching me a lot unintentionally, simply by living and being himself. He has a very positive and realistic approach on life. He’s hopeful, and also a visionary, yet he’s refined and practical. I am learning from how well he picks his battles, and also from the way that he chooses to look at as many angles and possibilities that he can consider for one particular topic or situation. It’s really neat to grow, in fact, I love this short little stent over here.
Just a quick fill in, I leave here Sunday, and back to the streets. I’ll be more than fine….I’ll Ignite a Fire to the streets with love in my capacity.

Thanks for caring. In peace & love.

Ignite a Fire

Eddie C

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