Admin Note: *Contributed Story* Please give credit and thanks to princemackaroo. This is a continuation to After God’s Own Heart – part 2.
A/N: This is the third installment for “After God’s Own Heart.” After seeing what Maya’s family is like and getting a glimpse of James’ character in this story, let us now see what Richard’s character is like in this story. 🙂 – Prince Mackaroo
Richard always believed that studies has to come first. It has to be the priority of every student. Romantic relationships can wait. This belief of his earned him the deep respect of his family especially his younger siblings, Simon and Nikki. They saw how focused their kuya is with his studies and how determined he is to serve the Lord.
Richard also loves to trek, ride bicycles, and play basketball. When he was a sophomore in college, he joined an organization which only has one goal: passion for mountain trekking. Thru this org, it enabled him to climb different mountains not only in the Philippines but around Asia as well.
His passion for bicycles is what creates a dispute between he and her mom. “Ricky! Yan na namang mountain bike mo ang gagamitin mo going to UP?? I told you a couple of times before, use your car! It’s very dangerous going around the metro with only a mountain bike! There isn’t even any bicycle lane along the streets na tatahakin mo!” said Mommy Esmeralda. “But mom, I love doing this. Besides, I am extra careful on the streets naman eh. You don’t have to worry about me too much,” answered Richard. “But still, I insist! Use your car! You may be extra careful but accident and danger are just lurking around the corner. If only your dad is here, I know he’ll side with me.” “But mom” “No more buts Ricky! That is final!”
Just so as to appease his mom and still be able to enjoy his passion, he then decided to live in a dormitory inside the campus though the campus is only a 30 minute drive from their house. He made an agreement with his mom that he would only use his mountain bike while inside the campus premises and will use his car when he goes back home. He did not had a hard time convincing his mom about the whole set-up since she knew how determined his son is about the whole thing and will not stop ’til he win the argument.
Richard’s dad is frequently away from home. He travels a lot because of the demands of their business. But despite this, he still make it a point to be a father to Richard and his siblings. Richard saw how completely devoted his father is, not only to his mom, but to the whole family. He looked up to him as a role model and respect him in every single way.
It was during his sophomore years when Kuya Carlo approached him one time at church after their Sunday service. Kuya Carlo explained to him his plan of conducting a bible study inside the UP campus. Richard, delighted with the idea, assured Kuya Carlo to help any way he can to have it pushed thru. And it did. A month after the said conversation, the said meeting finally pushed thru. A couple of Richard’s friends & classmates attended at first, but, through word of mouth, students from different colleges and departments started to join them.
Due to the increasing number of attendees, Kuya Carlo decided to have it done twice a week, every Wednesday at 5PM and Friday at 3PM. Richard helped his friend and pastor in ensuring that everything would go out smoothly. They never thought that they will be able to establish something like this.
It was Friday then, starting week of the second semester of his sophomore year, They were already gathered around the corner of sunken garden for the bible study that day when an unfamiliar group of students caught his attention. “Surely they’re not from our college.” he thought to himself. “I wonder what college they are from.” As they were about to start, Kuya Carlo noticed that there are a lot of new faces around. After he lead the group to an opening prayer, he finally asked each one to introduce themselves. “Public Administration students. Maya dela Rosa. A freshman.” Richard noted to himself. “It’s nice to see new faces around. I hope we can be friends as well.”
As months passed by, Richard got caught up with his studies and his org’s activities but still, he was able to find time to attend the weekly bible study held at their campus. Unfortunately, he was only able to attend the Wednesday slot and not the Friday slot. Because of this, he was no longer able to see Maya and her group again. He was a bit disappointed at first, but thought that everything happens for a reason. Perhaps befriending Maya is not yet right.
Whenever his busy schedule would allow him, he always tries to attend the Friday bible study. Yes he is happy with the idea of seeing Maya again but the main purpose of going to a bible study never evades his mind. Finally, an opportunity came when he was able to have a chat with one of Maya’s friends, Emman. Emman came to the venue earlier than usual and found Richard prepping up their meeting place. They talked for a couple of minutes. Shared stories of one another and even shared stories about Emman’s friends – Maya included. At that time, he learned that Maya has not entered any Romantic relationship yet. “Wow! She must be sharing the same priorities that I have! Nakakatuwa naman na there are still girls like her who prioritize her studies more than anything else and serves the Lord unfailingly. ” Richard thought.