Memories of Ricky Rodriguez

My memories of Pete

By Joy (30)

I lived with Pete for nearly three years in Portugal and got to know him fairly well during that time. We were friends and talked a fair bit. He was a nice guy. He was very interested in psychology and higher education, and when he eventually left to pursue his studies, I wasn't that surprised.

Overall, he was a normal guy, and for the most part seemed happy with his life. He was personable and a good conversationalist. He told me a lot about his life growing up. He didn't seem disturbed; to the contrary, he came across as stable, considerate of others, and had a strong conscience, which he abided by.

He was very thoughtful of others and often took the time to think about what other people would appreciate. I remember him bringing me freshly squeezed orange juice a few times out of the blue; I had casually mentioned at some point in conversation that I didn't care for orange juice made from concentrate, which is what we had on hand at the time. He would remember those little things. He would pitch in to help on dishes, or do a little extra. He was meticulous in his work, diligent and thorough, and was always willing to volunteer if there was a need to be filled. He was also good with the children.

We talked a lot about his childhood, what it was like growing up with his dad, how kind he was. I suppose I was more interested in hearing about his dad than his mom, seeing as I was living with her and knew her personally. He told me lots of stories of the fun things his dad did with him and the other kids as they were raised. Overall, his testimony of his life growing up was positive, and he certainly didn't seem to be troubled or carry emotional scars as a result of his childhood.

I was very interested to watch his interaction with his mom. Coming from a very close-knit family, and having not yet met Techi at that point, I wondered how close Mama was to her children. I figured that due to the circumstances of his dad and mom being so busy running the Family that they probably weren't able to spend much time with their children, and perhaps wouldn't have a very close bond as a result.

What I saw in their interaction together was very sweet. Pete was kind and loving toward his mother. I watched the two of them interacting on a few occasions, when it was just the two of them alone, with me in the back of his mom and Peter's room working on something. I heard casual, relaxed exchanges. They had meals together sometimes. Pete often did handyman jobs in his mom's room, helping her get things set up just right. Mama was always concerned about Pete and his needs. I noticed that she gave him small gifts from time to time.

Pete used to carry his mom down the stairs to meetings when she was too weak to walk. There were just a lot of little things that showed their love, even if they hadn't had as much time as a typical mother-son might spend together over the years. Pete never had a bad word to say about his mother, with the exception of him commenting to me one time how "my mom's on my case to hear from the Lord in prophecy more."? But even then he followed it up later with, "Well, she really isn't pushing me, she's just trying to encourage me, and I know that's good."?

Something else that stands out to me is Pete's prayers. He had a gift for praying for others. At meals or meetings, he would very sincerely pray for Family members on the mission field, for their witnessing, for the Lord's abundant supply. He had obviously spent a fair bit of time praying, because his prayers came out naturally and pretty eloquently as well. He was serious about whatever he did, and when I knew him, he was serious about serving the Lord. He had his ups and downs like all of us do, but at that point in his life, he had made a personal choice to follow the Lord.

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