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Archive for January, 2011

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” Matthew 5:8

A little for over five years ago, I remember a young, good-looking couple walked into the Friday night service. When I first saw them, I remember staring at them because they may have been the best looking couple to walk through the clamshell doors. Much to my surprise, my friend Gabe walked up to them, gave them a hug and then showed them to their seats. To this day, I’m not sure exactly what surprised me about their greeting. Maybe it was because I thought I was Gabe’s best-looking friend and I felt threatened that they just may take my title or maybe I just didn’t know Gabe knew such good-looking people. Either way, after church ended, Gabe introduced me to his friends from High School. That was my first introduction to Kawika and Pua Del Rosario.

Since then, we have become close friends and even though we’ve only known each other for five years I feel that they have always been a part of my life.

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Keao with Sarai, Isaiah and Pua in 2006

When I first met them, Kawika and Pua had two beautiful children, Sarai and Isaiah. Since then, they have added two beautiful little girls, Aliya and Tayani and I got married and had a daughter of my own. Our families grew closer as our families literally grew. They were there when I got married and started having children and they were even there when Keao and I lost Rory and Allison. They shared in some of our highest highs and our lowest lows.

Earlier this week, however, tragedy struck them in a way that no one would have ever expected. On Tuesday morning, Kawika and Pua, our dear friends, lost their 8 year-old son Isaiah.

Even now, just thinking about not having Isaiah around is simply unbelievable. I have never encountered anyone, adult or child, that loved life the way that he did.

In his famous Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught us that “blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matthew 5:8). Isaiah had the most pure heart and I believe that he saw God in everything. He viewed the world like no one else.

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Isaiah with Sarai and “pretty lady” Keiko

Pretty early on in our friendship, I remember coming to church and seeing Kawika scolding Isaiah. Being the nosy guy I am, I enquired as to what he did to deserve such a scolding. Kawika confided in me that Isaiah had a problem with talking to strangers. Actually it was more than just talking. It was hugging as well. If I didn’t witness it with my own eyes, I would have never believed it, but Isaiah would go up to strangers and announce, “Hi! I’m Isaiah! Can I have a hug?” And then he would stretch out his arms and wait for a hug. Never once believing that anything bad could come out of his gesture, all he wanted to do was share his never ending supply of love.

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Father and son

For a child with as rich an imagination as Isaiah everyday held a new adventure. He would come over with his family and go in my back yard and be an adventurer in my mango tree. Left to his own devices, he didn’t need a television or anything to entertain him. He could entertain himself because his mind constantly came up with new plans and new adventures.

When the movie WALL-E came out in theaters, Keao and I took the kids to see it. I could sense Isaiah taking it all in as the movie mesmerized him. As we were leaving the theater we asked the kids how they liked the movie. Isaiah answered by exclaiming, “You only like me when you need me!” Utterly confused, Keao and I looked at each other and asked him to explain himself. He responded by saying, “You just use me to keep the rain off!” As we got into the car, we realized that we weren’t talking to Isaiah anymore. Rather, we were talking to one of the umbrellas in the movie. Isaiah transported himself into the world of WALL-E and became one of the characters.

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Isaiah with his mom and many of his uncles

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A rare moment of a still quiet Isaiah

It’s always tragic whenever anyone dies but is is even more tragic is when someone passes away that didn’t have a chance to reach their full potential here on earth. I grieve along with the Del Rosario family because they will never have a chance to see their son grow up to become an adult.

When I think of all that could have been my heart simply breaks. I would have loved to see what path his life would have taken. Not content to be ordinary, I would have bet money that Isaiah would have been extraordinary. His love for life and adventure compounded with his imagination…there would have been no stopping him. I would have loved to read some of his creative writing assignments in school or watched him as he starred in a local drama. Whatever it was, it would have been good. Literally, the world was his playground.

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What’s better than playing in the rain and the mud?

As difficult it was for me to write this, it is infinitely more difficult for Kawika and Pua. Please be praying for them as they need to deal with this tragedy and yet remain strong for Sarai, Aliya and Tayani. It will be especially difficult for 5 year-old Aliya, she lost not only her brother, but her best friend as well.

If you would like to help or contribute to this family you may do so through our church Hope Chapel. You can send your contribution to:

The Del Rosario family
c/o Hope Chapel Kaneohe Bay
45-815 Pookela St.
Kaneohe, HI 96744

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Ta-daaaah!

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