The Words of the Ward Family
I was really grateful for this opportunity to go out on a sub-team. The previous week had been very tough for me. I was having trouble with giving consistent effort especially when external result didn't come. That was one thing I really wanted to overcome from this experience with Tomeo-hyung and of course enjoy the weather in Key West, Florida.
I went into this week with a goal of being grateful and loving the people. I chose this goal because I usually don't have gratitude in the fact that we are challenging ourselves to grow and sometimes I don't care about the people at all. Two experiences really stand out to me. The first one happened on the second day we went out. The first run had gone quite well externally and I wanted to make sure I didn't get complacent on the next one. I was dropped off in this downtown area full of Hispanic people. It was really hard for me to connect to all the Hispanics because they didn't understand what I was saying. I felt hopeless. I tried to relate it to God and thought, "WOW! this is how God must feel". I didn't want to quit, just because they didn't understand me. God wouldn't have stopped. A few stores down I was tested with my internal goal to the utmost. I met a guy in a shop who was atheist and he was preaching to me about how I shouldn't be begging and how God is something made up etc… I let him talk all the way through. I didn't want to get rude or negative towards him I just wanted to love him and appreciate him. It was tough but I persevered through it and kept going. After my interesting talk with Mr. Atheist I took time to pray and offer that up. I told God I would not quit on him or the people put in front of me. The goal for the run was 100 and with 15 minutes left I only had 3 but I still believed it could happen. And it did. I was able to restore 103 by the end of the run.
God was able to work through my investment and attitude prior. This experience reinforced my belief that God is watching out for me.
The other experience happened on the day when Mickey and I broke through. I was doing pretty well up until the 4th run externally. On the 4th run I tried the hardest I have ever tried on STF. I was loving and investing into everyone, but no one responded well towards me.
They kind of shunned me. I never felt this feeling of total rejection after every person. I worked so hard to love them but they didn't want it. The first person I approached next run was extremely negative towards me too. I was so close to crying then I realized I was a man.
I related it to how God loves us unconditionally and we still don't respond. If it hurt me I was wondering how much it hurt God. So I decided to keep going and persevere, that day I was able to set a new personal record for myself and the team.