Last weekend I found myself in the impressively beautiful city of Prescott, AZ. In all of my travels I never heard of Prescott, AZ. I also never knew it was possible for any part of the state of Arizona to be cold, but there I was in this quaint and not so busy town north of Phoenix dressed as if I were preparing for a New York winter. The occasion for my being there was both noble and festive. I was tapped to host the annual gala & fundraiser for the Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters. The theme for the event, was, you guessed it – Under The Big Top. It was a wonderful gathering of donors, partners, community leaders and mentors who descended upon the Prescott Resort And Conference Center. There were games, circus acts, auctioned items with superb auctioneer Chuck Dukas, great food, cotton candy martinis, music courtesy of Don Cheek & The Cheektones, and of course, yours truly galvanizing attendees to eat, drink, be merry, and give.
One after another I heard heart-tugging stories of men, women, and their families who opened up their lives to complete strangers. From some of the very mentees whose lives have become so much richer due to this most amazing organization, I heard how much more confidence they’d gained and how through their mentor(s) they acquired access to a world beyond what they knew. What many of the Little Brothers and Little Sisters of this program knew was brokenness. Many are the product of shattered homes and poverty. Two classic ingredients most associated with underwhelming and troubled lives that often lead to an illicit existence.
As I prepared for the evening I thought I might venture for a walk, as the landscape is truly breathtaking. I’d eventually find my way downtown to many of the local establishments. There’s definitely an Old West feel to the area. In fact the oldest rodeo happens to be in Prescott, AZ. This particular venture and I’ve been blessed to have many was wonderfully enlightening for me. The vast and mountainous views of Prescott granted me a piece of wisdom sometimes only nature herself can bestow.
Like so many of the mentees who come to Big Brothers Big Sisters many of us are seduced into believing there’s not much else beyond the supposedly small space of life we occupy. Somehow through circumstance, personal perception, habit or even our own doubts, the possibility of something greater doesn’t even compute. In some cases it can seem downright outrageous to even fathom the thought. Yet, as I looked upon that vast and mountainous view in Prescott, nature’s lesson was clear. We need only open our eyes, believe, and accept, that no matter where we’ve been or even where we are, there’s so much more for us if we dare to believe and receive – be it a Big Brother Big Sister or a glorious landscape, there is certainly more beyond our small spaces.