This week’s contributor, Bro. Elliot Trejo, currently serves as the Master of Ceremonies at Julian Feild Lodge #908, AF&AM, in Fort Worth, Texas. He is a 23-year-old from Minnesota, having been Initiated, Passed, and Raised at Newport Lodge #118, AF&AM, in St. Paul Park, Minnesota. He moved to Texas for school, currently living and working in Dallas. As such, he is a dual-member of the Grand Lodges of Minnesota and Texas.
A Brother’s Journey
Bro. Winston Churchill once said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.”
Lately, life has thrown a few curve balls at me which have me wondering where exactly I’ll end up. Between family, work, and social life, it is not an easy balance for anyone. It is especially not easy when you’re dealing with many “real world” things at the age of 23 and on the opposite end of the country.
Don’t get me wrong, my family and friends support me unconditionally in most everything I do, however, I understand that this is my part of life that will awaken me to the realities of life and being independent.
When I graduated from Texas Christian University in May 2014, I never thought the first year of the “real world” would be anything like this. To be honest, it hasn’t been the easiest of time for me. My first job was not ideal, my family’s health isn’t the best right now, and I felt (and sometimes still do) feel alone.
In spite of this, however, I do remember important lessons through my Journey on becoming a Mason.
As Masons, we are constantly reminded that the first three degrees are meant to represent Youth, Manhood, and Old Age (exact terminology depending on jurisdiction). During Stated Meeting, I listen to the lessons being taught and reflect on other Masonic resources to help me better understand what it all exactly means and how I can apply it to my life.
While I feel that all three degrees can apply to any part of our lives, I do feel that I am currently in the Entered Apprentice “phase” of life. I am young and learning something new every day. Whether it would be about Masonry, work, or life in general. In many cases, these lessons come from making mistakes and experiencing events that are less than desirable. Sure, this is pretty common knowledge, however, it is much different when one is experiencing it themselves…like I am.
That being said, I see the bigger picture. As our ancient Brethren did in the past, the Entered Apprentices were put to work under the guidance of a Master Mason, who would guide and teach their apprentice about the Craft of Masonry. Among the subjects taught were geometry, architecture, and many more. In these lessons, Entered Apprentices were challenged to learn and expand their knowledge through observation, comprehension and ultimately, experimentation.
In my particular situation, I am more independent than I have ever been…and that comes with growing pains and tough lessons. I have taken the lessons that my mother taught me, my observation of how she handles business and life, and ultimately, trying things out on my own. This, of course, is much easier said than done.
More often than not, I make plenty of mistakes and trying to understand where exactly I went wrong. Through the guidance of influential figures like my mother and friends, I gain more insight into what needs to be done and how to do the task better. In the moment, it really sucks hearing that you did something wrong or that a mistake cost you money, energy, love, etc. At times, it can really feel like your back is against the wall and you’re trying to fight away the demons that we all face throughout life. But, not all is lost on these types of learning experiences, it goes much further than that. It is through this that I learn, mature and head deeper into manhood and independence.
As I reminisce on my Masonic Journey, I realize that it is all part of the bigger picture. The more I am able to learn, the better prepared I am for entering the “Fellowcraft” part of life. I will have learned enough to maintain independence, but am still learning.
As I progress throughout life, my hope is that lessons today, despite how hellish they may feel…are always going to be important lessons to learn. So that one day, I can look at a young man, Mason or not, who is in a similar or the same situation as I am. From there, I can shed my Light and knowledge to him and explain how I handled the situation myself. Whether he listens to me or not is his prerogative. I can only hope that he will use his intellect to decipher the best possible plan for himself.
So, as Bro. Winston Churchill once said, “If you’re going through Hell, keep going.” I, myself would like to add to that great phrase and say: “If you’re going through Hell, keep going…because the Light is there…you simply need to find it.”
Take due notice and act accordingly, Brethren.
Bro. Elliot Trejo
Thank you Bro. Elliot Trejo for you contribution this week!
If you would like to be the next contributor, send me an email. I hope you will.