November 28, 1994 – Monday – 11:55 p.m.

Hi.

It’s me.  Jacob.

School is normal, except things are a little rough because of final exams.

I talked to Jenna and Tenielle tonight.  They will not be able to come and see me on the 3rd like they thought they would, but they are both fine.

I have fallen in love guys.  And it is real this time.  Other times I have doubted, but I have fallen in love.  It was so difficult to leave Jeni tonight at 11:00 when visitation hours were up.  Her dance was tonight.  She did such a wonderful job.  And tonight I held her in my arms as we laid on her bed and I looked into her eyes.  They are so gorgeous and I told her so.

“Why?” she asked.

“Because they are so clear and blueish gray.  The are cut like diamonds and when I see them I see your true self, your spirit.  Your eyes are the window to your soul, so deeper than any ocean.”

She smiled and said thank you and told me she loved me very much.

I told her that with her spirit, her soul, and her body and rolled into one, she has become the most beautiful person I have ever known.  She grows more beautiful each day.

No matter what I do or where I am, she is in my thoughts.

I see Jesus when I look at her.

She is perfect.

Jesus is my Lord and my perfect one.  Thank you Lord for my Jeni.

She is mine.

I am hers.

I love her very much.

But I don’t know how to show her.  I can hardly eat sometimes.

Oh Jeni, why do you love me?  No one else ever took that step to become as close to me as you have.  I feel like my life has begun here with you.  Those first 18 years of my life were simply practice and preparation to bring me to Lees-McRae.

Thank you Jeni.

Thank you.

November 17, 1994 – Sunday – 10:55 a.m.

I’m in the passenger’s seat of Jeni’s car.  We’re headed back to Lees-McRae.  It’s raining.

I’ve enjoyed my stay here.  It was a good Thanksgiving.

Last night Jeni and I were talking; she was telling me how sometimes she gets impatient when thinking about us.  She said she knows she still has to wait four years until she can be my wife.  The comment made me feel a little uncomfortable so I asked her if she would ever let me propose to her.  She said, “Of course, Jacob, the final decision will be yours.”

Then as we talked some more I told her I was scared.  I was scared because although I would like to spend the rest of my life with her, I’m still not sure if it will happen since I am so young.  I just wanted to play it safe.

That made her doubt.  “I just realized who I am to you Jacob.  And who you are,” she said.

“Who are we?”

“You have hardly dated people before.  How am I supposed to know that the feelings you have for me are as strong as the feelings I have for you?!”

I immediately turned over (we were lying on my bed in the sewing room) and faced the wall.  My heart had been stabbed.

“Don’t cry Jacob.”

I began to cry.

“Jacob…”

“Just hold me.”

She held me.

“What does that mean, ‘I never dated anybody?'” I asked.  “I’ve been hurt many times in my life Jeni.  There are many other girls I’ve had affections for.”

“I know Jacob.”

“Jeni, when I said what I said about playing it safe I didn’t mean it to be bad.  We’re young.  Just let it be love.  Let’s be free.  All I want is to go through each day and love you.  That’s all I ask.  That’s all I want.  And if this continues and years pass then I would very much like to be your husband.  But we have a long time until then.  I was praying earlier today.  And I asked God if you were the one he had set apart for me.  I told Him I was going to take a step of faith and the next phrase that entered into my mind I would believe were His words.  But before I could even finish the phrase He told me that I already knew.  And the answer was ‘yes.’  And I instantly doubted it, but not because I don’t want to be with you, but because while I know it in my heart, my mind doubts because I have been hurt so many times.  I am expecting you to hurt me, but you never do.  And sometimes it’s hard to accept the fact that the one thing I want the most, wants me in return.”

“Thank you Jacob.  You are so much wiser than me.”

See, Jeni dreams a lot and she knows it.  I am a dreamer too, but I don’t tell everyone about it.

She was getting ready to leave and go to bed, but I asked her to stay and hold me a little longer.

She did and I prayed for us.  I started to cry.  God is so good to me.  Jeni held me and tears rolled from my eyes.

I love her.

We are in Kentucky now.  It’s raining very hard.  Jeni’s dance concert is tomorrow night and Tuesday.

My life continues.  It never stops.  Jeni and I grow closer every day.  Each day is full of simple love.

And we still dream.

My heart has a burden for the world.  I want to show the love of Jesus through story and film.  Jeni wants to serve.

We dream, but these are not Winter Dreams.

They are hardly summer dreams.

They are our lives.

A reality.

November 25, 1994 – Friday – 10:20 p.m.

Last night we went to go see a movie but the time was different than what the paper said, so we came back home.

Tonight we simply rented two movies, The Power of One and Shadowlands.  Jeni liked them both.  She cried during both.

Today, we had a talk.  We were a bit concerned because we had gotten very close physically.  We have done nothing wrong, she just doesn’t want it to go any further.  Neither do I.  Sometimes that gets in the way of why I really love her.

Tonight we talked about a few things.  She told me how much she looks forward to spending the rest of my life with me.  Sometimes I get scared because I’m not sure if that’s God’s will.  We might get separated with my desire to be a filmmaker, but she said she knows it is God’s will.

I wonder… if God is love, and people grow to love each other, does it become harder to hear God’s will because they are mistaking their own experiences of love for His voice?

Nevertheless, it is obvious to both of us that He brought us together.  We are from two different worlds, yet now we are together.

So, I too, will not worry about it.  And I will look forward to the rest of my life with her.  But tonight I told her no matter what happens, my dreams have come true, I have loved.  God has not only allowed me to love, but He has allowed me to be loved.

Jeni, that’s all I will ever need to know.

November 24, 1994 – Thursday – 8:17 a.m.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Last year I was in Virginia.  Now I am in Ohio.  The Lord is good to me.  I love Jeni so much.  I hear talk of their family and then I think of my family.  It is so amazing how Jeni and I are together.

Last night I dreamed of Christi.  I simply dreamed that her and Andy came to visit me at college.  It was good to see her, but then I woke up.

I’m already in the third section of my 7th Book of Days.  Seven books already!  Wow!

Jeni’s brother Chuck is coming over for Thanksgiving today!  He is married and has three little daughters named Rachel, Jordan, and Olivia.  I can’t wait to meet them all.  I want to be a part of this big family.  They already treat me as if I am.

One day my brothers Kevin and Nate will be uncles.  Weird.  I don’t know why I’m thinking along these lines.

I’m just so happy here.  Every night I hold Jeni in her bed before she falls asleep and I go off to the sewing room.  I love holding her.  She says she wants me to hold her forever.  I tell her not to worry; I will.

I believe tonight we’re going to see The War with Kevin Costner and Elijah Wood.  Missy and Paul are going to go with us.

Mom was supposed to put $50 in my bank account yesterday.  Hopefully she did.  I won’t be able to buy many Christmas presents this year, but I’m going to get Jeni something nice.  I have no idea what though.

I wish I could be with her for Christmas, but I must go see my dad.  It would break his heart if I didn’t go.

It’s probably breaking his heart that I’m not there now.

November 23, 1994 – Wednesday – 5:17 p.m.

Again, I am in Cincinnati, Ohio.  I really like it here.

At this moment the sun is setting.  This is my home.

Wherever Jeni is, there is my home.

Yesterday we relaxed, but that evening we went to visit Craig and Coletta.  A friend of theirs, Julianne, was there.  We talked for a while and then we played Taboo.  I had a lot of fun.

Then Julianne came back there to Jeni’s house and they invited another friend over and we all talked endlessly.

Yesterday Jeni and I watched Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Dead Poets Society.  I enjoyed them both.  Today we watched Field of Dreams and then Leah, Jeni’s oldest sister, and her kids Jason and Paige came over.

Later tonight we are going to go eat at Jeni’s grandmother’s house and, of course, tomorrow is Thanksgiving.

Tomorrow night I’m going to take Jeni out to see a movie since it is a tradition of mine to always see a movie on Thanksgiving day!

November 20, 1994 – Sunday – 1:25 p.m.

It’s been a year since my audition for a scholarship at Lees-McRae.  This is the end of this section of this notebook, and since it has been two years from the time I began my journal, I will rewrite quotes and phrases from My Book of Days from the past year.

“Life will not kill the dream I dream.”

“I will never forget that weird feeling I got on May 8, 1993.”

“This can’t be happening!”

“Remember…only friends.”

“This is a very special gift…it’s filled with love inside.”

“Right now, I’m in my room, my home, but it seems as if I’m so much farther away.”

“This could actually be fun.”

“The grass has died.”

“Whoever says hello, must once day say goodbye.”

“Four.”

“abc…”

“The flowers are fading.”

“Hank pulled me off to the side.”

“I will never stop fighting!”

“I’m waiting for a new sun to rise.”

“…and kiss them both on the cheek.  I will.”

“I will no longer climb that tree.”

“What do you do when you want something you can’t have?”

“I held his hand and felt his pain.”

“But in those looks there is a distance.”

“We all know those kind only grow in the summer.”

“Elephant shoe.”

“Where is that someone?  This life won’t let me stop to breathe.”

“Well Jacob, you had to be there to keep certain things together through the bad times.”

“One more person!”

“Today I saved the world.”

“For in the end, great will be your reward.”

“This is my story.”

“I’m letting go of things whether I want to or not.”

“A land hopefully flowing with milk.”

“Another girl will always come along.”

“No one can prepare you for the world.”

“All of these voices.”

“All I can say is thank you.”

“Will I ever find the blessing in this heartache.”

“Perhaps we will laugh together again.”

“She blent in with thousands of other girls I didn’t know.”

“God created me so he could share me with the rest of his creation.”

“I will possibly sit close to someone else while Jenna does the same.”

“The way night comes when day is done.”

“This is going to hurt.”

“She kissed me on my right cheek.”

“My winter dreams have changed.”

“Can it already be May?”

“Thank you Renee.”

“Objects in the mirror.”

“This is you.”

“I will be the king I was meant to be.”

“I will be an eagle’s feather.”

“Then that is where I will go.”

“The pain now is part of the happiness then.”

“All of this and I don’t even know her name.”

“Nothing would please me more.”

November 20, 1994 – Sunday – 1:50 a.m.

Jeni and I spent the whole day together after Marcus and Scott left.

It was a wonderful day of us just being close to each other.

Near the end of the day she told me this:

“Jacob, there are two things I am determined to do in life.  The first is to be a servant for Christ.  The second is to become your wife.”

I couldn’t move.  She shocked me.

And I replied: “Nothing would please me more.”