Edgar’s Search For Something Better Helps Him Find The Best
After spending 13 years in prison in Ohio for stealing and burglary, Edgar went to a half-way house for one year. Like many ex-convicts, Edgar didn’t know anything else and went right back to being a thief, pickpocket, and street hustler. It’s how he made money while living on the streets after moving to New York City. Edgar wanted to change, but had no idea how. He just knew he wanted something better.
He raised his hands while he was walking on the streets on N.Y. and cried out to God asking Him to change his situation. He took 5 steps and a friend pulled up in a car and said, "Get in." This friend said, I know the unemployment rate in Maryland is very low and you can probably get a job so you can get out of New York. Edgar thought this was an answer to prayer and immediately got out of his car and called Grey Hound. They said, "Mr. Blair, we have a special. If you buy a ticket before 7am you get a discount.”
Will it be better in Maryland?
He bought a bus ticket on the spot and took off for Maryland. He didn’t know the bus would go to Washington DC and then to Maryland via shuttle. So he spent the night in an all-night restaurant and then the next morning Edgar found a job as a day laborer in a nursery. It was hard work and it only lasted 2 days.
Edgar, having no where to go, ended up staying at a Maryland shelter for 90 days, got another job, and saved a few dollars. Another homeless guy who knew Edgar said, "Hey, Edgar, I'm going to San Diego to start a business and I'm going to hire you.” The man took off and sent him a letter saying he found a shelter for them but Edgar never heard from him again.
Maybe it’s in San Diego!
So Edgar caught another bus, this time to San Diego hoping he can find his friend who was starting a business and could give him a job. But he never saw this friend again and ended up homeless in the southern California city for a few more years. A new guy he had never seen before, came into the San Diego mission from Denver and said, "Edgar, you need to go to Denver because they have jobs, missions who will feed you, and give you a place to stay."
Edgar, still looking for something better, was on a bus to Denver the next morning, spending every last bit of money to get here. Maybe this was the city where he could find something better? After he got off the bus, Edgar called the Coalition for the Homeless and they told him where he could stay. This was in April 1988.
Even though Edgar was not a drug addict, he enrolled in a drug and alcohol program so he could get off the streets, have a bed, meals and, some stability in his life. During the 2 year program, he was required to attend Bible studies where he heard about Jesus. While in the program at the Denver Rescue Mission, Edgar made the decision that he needed God if he was going to experience any real change.
Edgar finds the best
God changed Edgar’s heart and started working in his life. He went to Emily Griffith, got some training and got a job as a nurses aide. He eventually got Section 8 housing and got his own apartment in Denver. Edgar lost his job because of some mistakes he made with a patient, but he still had a place to live. A lady in the building told him about a place at 850 Lincoln St. called Christ’s Body Ministries who served meals everyday. Edgar walked through the doors in 1993, and kept coming in for the food and the love he felt from the staff.
Edgar had talents as a artist, and began to show some of his drawings to John Morehead, who was the Director of Christ’s Body at the time. John saw his talent and told Edgar they have an idea for a mural on a wall in the Day Shelter. Edgar agreed and began coming up with ideas for the mural. It took him 1 year to finish and he put the final touches on it in 2009. The painting is all about how Jesus frees us from the old way of life and gives us new life in Him.
Edgar remains a guest at Christ’s Body where he comes and eats, attends our School House teachings on Monday, and is a positive influence for our residents and street volunteers. Edgar attends Flatirons Church in Denver and is growing in his faith in Jesus who took a man with no hope and is now using him to shine light into a dark world.