February 28, 1998 – Saturday – 1:30 a.m.

I’m in Fort Mill, South Carolina.  We are at a recreation center where Abigail’s sister works.  We are all spending the night here.  It’s me, Lindy, Kate, Charlie, Ashley, Shannon, Justin, Vince, Curtis, Abigail, Dan, Sara Anne, Jessica, Ann-Marie, Tracey, Jaminda, and Sherlive.

During the first session of the Acquire the Fire convention tonight, I felt God did something with me.  I stood up and shouted for him tonight.  He is so awesome.

We also went swimming afterwards.  I’m having an awesome, awesome time.  It’s great having so many Christian friends.  And this mission trip thing with Teen Mania this summer is really looking good.  No telling which continent I’ll end up on.

I miss Sarah.  I wish and pray that she wants to be a part of this area of my life.

February 25, 1998 – Wednesday – 11:49 p.m.

The sun was shining today and it was so warm.  It was actually only 37 degrees, but it felt like it was summer to the whole campus.  Everyone was in a great mood.

I got some new music in the mail today: Jennifer Knapp.  It is so awesome!

I also learned today that I’m going to go to a Sarah Masen, The Waiting, and Sixpence None The Richer concert right before I leave for Tampa.

God taught me a lot today.  He told me that I try to be everyone’s savior, but that He is their only true savior.  He is only calling me to be their friend and to love them no matter what.  I had a smile on my face all day.  Sarah and I got to see each other a bit and I ate both lunch and dinner with all my friends.

Today was a fantastic day!

Thanks God!

February 24, 1998 – Thursday – 11:00 a.m.

Oh, so much has happened.  I guess I’ll try to tell these stories.

Marcus and Kevin came up, but Kevin spent all his time with Curtis and Vince.  Marcus and I talked about him.  His life has taken some amazing turns.  Marcus told me that my brother is no longer a virgin, that he lost his virginity to Kate, the same girl Jonathan first had sex with, and evidently Marcus first learned about this from Tenielle, who, if what Marcus says is true, might end up following her sister’s teen pregnancy path.  And, during all this, one of Kevin’s college friends killed himself.  Kevin wasn’t able to transfer to a college in Texas like he had planned, which, let’s face it, was just him trying to escape everything and start over.  He is in debt way over his head.  He has maxed out three credit cards and owes our mom, and Danny and Peter’s dad, about $4,000.

He did not love Kate.  She was nobody to him.  He made a mistake and gave away a precious gift.  And now it seems he hates himself for it, because he couldn’t face me all weekend.  I cried my eyes out over him because I know he has to feel terrible.

During the show on Sunday afternoon, I was pretty down.  Sarah wasn’t being very comforting to me, for she got upset about something and later that night cussed me out over the phone because I was dealing with my brother instead of helping to strike the set.  I was so upset about my friends and family back home falling apart and I took it out on her by questioning the quality of her personal relationship with the Lord.

She cried all day on Monday and eventually came over to tell me I have no right to judge her.  I felt terrible and cried in her arms.  But before that, since Sarah was ignoring me, the one person who did take the time to listen to me and be a good friend was Abigail.  She came over on Sunday night and held me as I poured my heart out to her.  She really helped me feel much better about everything.

I think things are better now, for Sarah and I made up last night.  We snuggled together for about three hours.  She held me so tight and there’s a way that I can kiss the back of her neck to make her whole body tremble.  Oh God, please be the Lord of our physical relationship.  I don’t want us to go too far.  Holy spirit, please help keep us in line.

Oh, what an emotional past few days.  It seems I’ll never stop learning.  I’ve complicated life and I didn’t need to.  But love has saved me.  I am nothing, but God has saved me nonetheless.  I understand nothing of how this world works.  I’m going to quit trying.  I’m going to remain stupid.  I just want to love the people around me until it’s time to go to heaven.

Oh Jesus, comfort me until then.

February 23, 1998 – Monday – 12:20 p.m.

A lot has happened; too much to write about.  Why do I have to play this part in your plan Lord?  It is so hard.

I don’t know what to do.

Have I done anything wrong?

I don’t even know what to write.

. . .

It is the Monday of the last week of February, 1998.  Cuckoo’s Nest is over.  Marcus and Kevin came up to see the show, but I know in reality they just came up to meet Sarah.  Marcus and I spent a lot of time together, but I hardly saw Kevin at all.

And that is just part of a very big story, a very sad story.  I’m not sure I’m ready to write this story down yet.  It’s a story that involves Marcus, Kevin, Jenna, Tenielle, Sarah, Kate, Jonathan, and even Abigail, and in a slight way, Rebecca St. James.

And, of course, it involves Jesus.

Oh Lord, this hurts.

 

February 19, 1998 – Thursday – 11:30 a.m.

The show went so great last night.  I’ve received so many compliments.  Doc came up to me afterwards and just stared into my eyes.

“You’re on your way,” she said after a long pause.

I kissed Sarah goodnight then hung out with the guys for the rest of the night.  I called Sarah again at 1:00 a.m. and we talked for three hours.  All we did was just adore and affirm each other.  For three hours we praised each other.  I read her stuff from my journal and she told me she loved me so many times.  I did the same.  Those are sweet words to hear and speak.  We talked of the future, the past, and the present.  I love her more and more each day.

Oh God…you are so wonderful to me.

February 18, 1998 – Wednesday – 9:30 a.m.

Oh man, I can’t believe this is happening.  Sarah and I are growing together so well.  I’m so in love with her.  And yet, this ship we are sailing on is sinking.

I’m beginning to notice so many little things about this beautiful world. The way the pink lemonade in the cafeteria pours out into my glass, the shape of the branches on the walk to back campus, the fog that settles in the valley.

I’m becoming more and more like Sarah every day and she is becoming more and more like me.  We both even have the same hair color now.  Guys on the hall thought I did it to look like her, but I told them it was for the show.

Oh, my Sarah is so beautiful and so soft.

The show opens tonight.  It’s great being in a show with her; to always have her around.

Last night I walked alone to the waterfall after midnight.  It was roaring so loudly.  It was so big and happy.  So happy to love, but it was also a bit afraid for those thousands of drops of water did not know where they were going.  But there was peace there as well.  God is leading the way.

Time is slipping away beneath me.  But I hardly even notice it.  For my eyes are filled with only three things these days:

My terrific friends.

My beautiful Sarah.

And the God who gave them both to me.

February 16, 1998 – Monday – 1:19 a.m.

Sarah and I had a wonderful Valentine’s Day lunch, and then we had a super long rehearsal together that night.

Valentine’s Day is actually a great day when you have a special girl to share it with.

But as of right now, I just got back from the hospital, for Sarah got kicked in the head during rehearsal tonight.  It was really bad, but she should be okay.  I’ve been there with her for the past two hours.

I’m so sleepy.  Hard to write right now.

All I know is that I love Sarah.

And I love Jesus.

 

February 14, 1998 – Saturday – 12:08 p.m.

All of my boys were just in here: Vince, Curtis, Dan, Allen, Josh, Justin, and Alex.  We had a hugging party for Valentine’s Day.  And then they all left to go to lunch, but I stayed behind since I’m taking Sarah out to eat for the special day.

February is half over.  The days are vanishing, but I know I am alive in each one.  God is with me in each step I take, I have wonderful guy friends, wonderful gal friends, and one very special girlfriend.

How could I ask for more?

February 13, 1998 – Friday – 6:00 p.m.

I got a call from Elinor at Regent University yesterday.  I’ve been accepted!  Thank you God!

I bought Sarah a funny Valentine’s Day card, plus three roses, and I put them in her room tonight while she was at a Highlanders’ Performance.  I hope she likes it.

The past couple of days have been relaxing and peaceful.  Rehearsals have been easy and last night we had our costume parade.  I had to stand in front of the whole cast and crew, under the bright stage lights, with nothing but a sheet around my waist.

After the rehearsal I went to Sarah’s room, and she just looked at me from across the room.

“What?” I asked.

“Well…you have a nice body, skinny boy.”  And she looked at me in such a way, and gave me a grin in such a way, that said, “Why didn’t you tell me you were so sexy underneath your clothes.”

I was obviously surprised.  I just view myself as a tall, skinny, lanky, awkward dude.

“Really?” I offered back.  “No one’s ever told me that before.”

And then I kissed her.

Our relationship has grown so much.  Thank you Jesus.  Thank you God.  Thank you Holy Spirit.

Elizabeth has become a really awesome friend.  We’ve begun to share our hearts with one another.  Thank you for her too Lord.

Life and love are all about giving.  It’s as simple as that.  Give all that you have.  Hold nothing for yourself.

When you live for yourself, you become lonely and cold.  Give your life away to everyone around you, and you will find yourself never lacking in joy and peace.

I guess this means I’ll have to give Lees-McRae away as well.

And in order to keep Sarah, I’ll have to give her away too.

 

February 11, 1998 – Wednesday – 1:00 p.m.

Last night was so weird.

Emily has a big long break between her scene’s in Cuckoo’s Nest, and last night, during that break, she went and drank all her problems away.  She came back to her scene with me in our underwear all liquored up, that’s the first time I’ve ever had to kiss anyone with so much alcohol on their breath.  Then after our scene she pours her heart out to me backstage, and starts crying.  She said something really bad happened to her that day, but she didn’t want to tell me the details.  Whew.  I felt for her.

I bought my plane ticket for Tampa today.  $221, pretty good, huh?

Justin and I have decided to spend Spring Break doing some flood relief work in Kentucky.  It should be fun.

Titanic received 14 Oscar nominations.  That’s a tie for the record, crazy!

Life is running along very smoothly.  Less than three months remain now.

Sarah gets more beautiful with each passing day.  I am only 21-years-old, but I know I have truly loved a woman.