Thursday, July 30, 2009

summer 2009, continued

A lot has happened since the last time I posted.

I went to Puerto Rico in July! I didn't stay there too long this time, though. Actually, I flew on Friday, then flew back to TX on Sunday. I went for my good friend Jennifer's wedding. I had a great time seeing old friends, and being able to see an old childhood friend get happily married. I was able to meet her husband, which seems like a cool, Godly man. I pray that God may bless their marriage as they continue to grow. Another cool thing about the wedding - I had a date! My good childhood friend Xiomara insisted that I go with her as her date (she could have just asked), and so I did. We both had a great time at the wedding. However, I gave her a hard time for not dancing with me. :-P

Here are some pictures:

Cute couple.

With Xiomara.

With my friends!


Another cool event that happened this summer, in August, was that I had the opportunity to attend the Miss Texas Teen pageant to support my good friend Hoang-Kim. She obtained a boat-load of trophies, and placed 2nd runner-up overall. It was awesome to see her do so well. Her family looked so proud of her. I also had the chance to finally meet her brother, who's a pretty cool guy himself.

Here's a picture:

With her parents


One of the areas that God has been blessing me greatly this summer is with relationships. I have made many great friendships, and existing ones continue to grow with time. After the retreat, I have really connected with the Tres Dias community, which has been nothing but a blessing. I've met great people that have encouraged me in different ways. I also now meet weekly with a great group of guys to fellowship with over breakfast. I thank God continually for all these great people that He has brought into my life.

A result of these relationships has been that I now am involved with a prison ministry called From Pain To Joy Prison Ministries. I am not directly related however, in the sense that I don't actually go to the prisons to visit. Basically, one of the inmates, who some time ago received Christ and has been completely transformed by God, has written many many articles to encourage other prisoners who either don't know Christ or are struggling in their faith. What's remarkable about this man is that he used to be like the big leader of the Crips gang before he went to prison, and now is a humble, faithful servant of Christ¹. Well, the thing with the articles is that they have been very effective in prisons, internationally. However, as of right now, they are mostly in English. So, the way I'm helping is by translating these articles into Spanish. It's a blessing to be able to serve my Hispanic brothers in this way. What's great is that I not only get to be a blessing to them, but I myself am blessed by the encouragement that these articles bring me as I grow in my faith. I thank God for this opportunity, and I pray that I may be able to continue to serve in this way.

¹You can read more about him here.


As I mentioned in a previous post, I used to be big into First-Person Shooter (FPS) games, namely Quake. Well, for a long time, I always wanted to go to QuakeCon, a convention that is held each year in the Dallas area, but so far hadn't gone (I mentioned I had pretty much stopped playing) since I moved to Texas. Since about a year ago, a friend of mine had been inviting me to go with him this year. I gave him my word, but I wasn't really excited about it. Anyway, the weekend finally came, and man, was I pumped when I got there. It's like a geek's paradise, in that you get to see a lot of new technology gaming-wise, and get to be in an environment with people that share an interest for gaming.

I set up my computer on Thursday, but couldn't actually play until Saturday (had other things going on Friday). Anyway, I played Quake Live nonstop for most of the time I was there, it was great. On Saturday night, they were drawing some raffle tickets that they had given out to people when you checked in to the event. There were about 5,000 tickets in the tumbler, according to the people there. Anyway, they had another drawing with only 100 tickets with a Ford Mustang as a prize, which were drawn from the 5,000 ticket tumbler plus other events they had going on. Long story short, they pulled my name out of the big tumbler. However, I wasn't present. I hadn't left the room for ten minutes, when my buddy calls me on the phone yelling that I had been picked. I ran all the way to the stage (encouraged by my friend), and was even told to go up. Suddenly, the dude tells me that I have to perform a dance or something to convince the people that I deserved the ticket. I was confused, nervous, and fatigued from running so much, I couldn't come up with anything. At the end of the day, what had happened was that my name had already been looked over because I wasn't present at the moment of the drawing. So, naturally, the crowd booed me off the stage. It was sorta embarrassing, but it was even worse knowing that I had a chance to get into the smaller drawing to win the car, but lost it for stepping out of the room. Ugh. Anyway, my friends got a kick out of it, and were even teasing me saying stuff like "don't worry dude, I'll walk you to your Mazda", hahaha. Next year I'll actually stay in the room as names are called. :|

Here's a picture:

May God bless you and keep you.
Until next time,

1 comment:

  1. Mano, a la verdad q va tiempo q no visito O_O. Felicidades en el viaje a PR, espero que el descanso te halla caido bien. Felicidades a tu amiga de vietnamese, 2nd no esta malo.

    Felicidades con tus ni~os de salsa, me alegro q sean dedicados y que sepan poner de su parte.

    Fino con lo de QuakeCon, idTech5 esta O_O

    Exito con todo y cuidate hermano!!!