Prayer Box 4.0 Officially Up
This memorial day weekend was such a special series of days because finally, Prayer Box 4.0 has been placed atop Runyon Canyon here in Hollywood, LA!! Yes, 4.0, because over 2 years, my box has taken 3 versions to survive to what it’s been updated into today. Thank you if you’ve followed my trail of prayer box postings through Twitter & Facebook — here I’ll explain how it ever first started.
7 years I moved to LA with my dream to celebrate people’s potential through television. I had a dinky lil car, a head full of ideas, and my entire wardrobe stuffed from my trunk to my front seat. (Imagine how long it took me to find that dang other shoe!) I realized fast that any one can get sucked into the hustle and bustle of this hectic city, and lose sight of your vision pretty quickly. I had to find a way to refuel and recharge each day. So I found Runyon Canyon, a popular hiking trail here in Hollywood, and started hiking it every day just to let out steam. Honestly? I was SO NOT in good shape back then, I could barely make it up the easy trail where puppies and lil cute kids would glide right past me. I used to trick the kids into looking for lizards so I could at least make it up past them. And yet, there was this ONE other trail, completely off the beaten path and so high and steep that you’d have to wait to get to the absolute top of the lower easy trail to even be able to see part of where it continued. That trail, I decided, was a symbol of where all my dreams and goals lay. It’s where I knew I had to work to get to, believe in myself to conquer, and eventually lead others to believe they could do it, too.
So fast fwd about 6 months. After my stubborn persistence, I eventually built my endurance to make it up that hill without stopping. But I realized it wasn’t just a good pair of shoes that got my butt up there– it was prayer. With each tiring step up that steep hill, I made that step a prayer to myself about the things I was struggling with. Relationships, financial stress, family strife, even just a bad day.. I pushed my way up through them all. When I stood at the top of that hill and looked down, I saw that is exactly how God sees us through life– we CAN make it. But that wasn’t even the best part! It was then that I realized when I felt prayed up, I had the energy to pray for everyone else I had on my heart that was facing struggles too. Family, friends, countries, the poor, the hurt..I prayed for em all on the way down. It was then I learned the anthem to mai life: Ya got time to stress? Ya got time to bless.
This process has impacted my life so much I decided to try to share it with others. So I put a small box with 2 holes cut out of it to the top of Runyon Canyon. This was version 1.0.
Within one week, there were about 30 or so prayers. Within a month, prayers were popping out of the little holes every time I came up to check it.
The box outgrew itself within 6 months. So I upgraded to this:
It was the first time the box had an enclosed trap door, and could place more paper and pens within it. The Prayer Box even officially made Fox 11 News, and even Jaeson’s Ma’s trek of 365 Days of Love. It was even Yelped! This box lasted a good few months, and I couldn’t have done it without the help of my dear friends Stavros and Grace to help hand build the box themselves.
Then came the day that this box was destroyed, as I blogged about it here. I was devastated at first, seeing hundreds prayers thrown over the hillside. Now looking back, I’m actually so thankful that it happened because it brought me to meet one of my dearest and inspiring friends ever, the Gentle Giant James.
As I blogged, finding James was a testimony to the hope I had taught myself to have in the beginning of this prayer box journey. So together, I envisioned while James designed what turned out to be Prayer Box 3.0. Built by the loving hands of Dan Ames connected by a dear fan, Kay, and beautifully handpainted by my own fashion designer Emiliano Moreno, the box came to life.
Together, this beautiful team you see above mounted and placed this wooden box into the ground with love. Not more than 24 hours later, this box was destroyed. Again, prayers scattered along the ground, box completely torn apart. I was in tears. I remember running down that hill after finding the box, with all the prayers I could hold clutched in my hands and pockets, so angry and hurt. Then I remembered my own motto- “Ya got time to stress? Ya got time to bless.” There were more prayers to be prayed forward- and it’s my faith that is abominable, not this box. So James, my husband Freddy, and myself started on Prayer Box 4.0.
After nearly 600 pounds of concrete, 100 lbs of steel, and more friends of the prayer box awaiting it’s return, Prayer Box 4.0 has officially been placed atop Runyon Canyon. Made of metal and love, James’ original design was put together by my dear friend Yosemite Steve. And the finishing handpainted touches? The talented visionary artist, Fabian Rodriguez. So together, this team and a crew of Prayer Box visitors helped carry the box to it’s home.
As you can see, Fabian did a beautiful job of covering the prayer box in light, love, and hope on all sides. There’s a chalkboard for anyone to write on the back, and in the two times that I’ve returned to the box in the last 3 days it’s been there, I’ve already had to fill the box with more paper.
I will be putting up a Facebook and Twitter page for the Prayerbox soon (thanks Angela!) and for every one of you here who have been praying up the box- THANK YOU!! Know that I would love to bring your prayers to the box so I can help you pray it forward. Send your prayers to email@example.com, and if you’d like a prayer in return include your return address. I’ll also be posting anonymous prayers here so we can keep them lifted together.
Blessings everyone. And SPECIAL THANKS to these individuals who truly made it happen.
Prayer Box Designer The Gentle Giant- James Thompson
Prayer Box Artist Fabian Rodriguez
And couldn’t have made it happen without: The Hollywood Hunter