Campus families foster ASB president's faith
Senior Chandler Vargas reflects on his high school experience and how FC has provided him with close relationships.
My journey at FC began in the fourth grade. I remember having to quickly learn to write in cursive and catching up on my multiplication facts. Ken Davis soon became my favorite teacher as he presented the Bible to me from a Hebrew perspective, teaching us the Jewish alphabet, prayers and traditions. This is when I realized FC would challenge me spiritually as well as academically.
As I continued my years at FC I desired to strengthen my faith in Christ. Yet with the struggles of not having a father at home, money being really tight or even with my mom having to work unceasingly just to put food on the table, it was hard to see God's sovereignty.
That's when the [Phil & Stacy] Belmont and [Dr. John & Sheri] Lee families welcomed me into their homes like another son. Through these people I was able to see for myself a true demonstration of Christ and understand what God's love is all about. They willingly invited me over for dinner anytime of the week or just let me show up.
Stacey Belmont found much joy in being able to test out her new recipes on me when the rest of the family didn't seem up for a change in the menu. I soon found myself over so frequently that Phil Belmont would tease me with things such as, "Wow, back again?" or, "Make sure to leave some money on the counter for food before you leave."
Although he was probably suggesting a night alone, he never once kicked me out. This simple act of kindness has made a tremendous impact in my life. Through my time spent with these families I've learned to care for others as Jesus talks about in James 1:27. They have inspired me to pursue my heart for reaching the needy.
I once heard a quote by John Wooden: "Seek opportunities to show you care. The smallest gestures often make the biggest difference." At times, attending FC was a mask for me because people could assume a number of things about me, and never really knew what was going on inside of me; on the outside everything seemed great.
"That's when the Belmont and Lee families welcomed me into their homes like another son. Through these people I was able to see for myself a true demonstration of Christ and understand what God's love is all about." --Chandler Vargas, '12
However, later in high school I figured out that there must have been several other kids in the same position I had been in. Realizing this caused me to branch out beyond my small group of friends on the basketball team to kids I wouldn't normally consider to be like me.
My favorite experience at FC has been being able to freely walk around from one group of friends to another. Unlike many public schools, students here are not strictly separated into cliques or special groups. This experience has helped show me that everyone has a unique life story and have faced something difficult.
I will always cherish the friendships I've made with freshman through seniors. Leaving FC will definitely be bitter sweet knowing that the place I've spent most of my life growing up at will no longer be my school.
Senior Chandler Vargas will attend San Diego's Point Loma Nazarene University in the fall.
For more senior columns, read the May 16 article, "The ABC's of my high school journey."