May 3, 1997 – Saturday – 11:50 p.m.

Jessica and I camped out on top of a small hill west of Hemlock Hill.  We didn’t sleep in a tent; we slept under the stars.  It was a beautiful evening where we ate an entire box of Wheat Thins and talked about the simple joys of life.  I don’t think I’ve ever known a more delightful girl.

On Friday, Vince and I moved some of my stuff into Tennessee dorm.  At 3 o’clock, I left with Amy and Derek to drive down to Charlotte where we visited Abigail’s family and saw STOMP.  It was a completely amazing experience.  I had a relaxing time just riding in the car and listening to music as well.  I haven’t had a car at all during these three years of college and I’m so thankful I haven’t.  To depend on others, to hear new music, to stare out the window as the car hums beneath me; oh I love it so.

I slept in this morning and Allen helped me move more stuff this afternoon.  We went to see Joseph again tonight.  Marjorie was there.  I’ve been running into her a lot recently.

Graduation is tomorrow.  I leave on Monday.  I believe mom and I will visit some family in Waynesville.

I’m only taking some clothes, my Bible, and my Book of Days home with me.  I don’t own much, but I don’t even want to bring that with me.  I’m leaving my stereo, music, and other stuff here.  I just want to see who I really am.  I don’t want to be around my usual surroundings for a while.  I just want me, the Holy Word, and a blank sheet of paper in this notebook.

March 6, 1997 – Thursday – 9:10 a.m.

Things between Abigail and I are a little different, but I sense they will blow over.  They left this morning with Highlanders to tour in Florida.  I hugged her goodbye.  God will take care of everything.

Last night we had an amazing worship service at Heaton Christian Church.

I leave for Tampa in about 25 hours.

I called Marcus last night.  He is such a good friend.  We can always relate to each other.

Life is okay.  Life is good.  There is a lot I don’t understand; and I have this weird feeling I’m not going to.

I just pray and hope that I’m not wasting my life.  I want to do all I can for the Lord.

But I’m here now, my whole life is ahead of me, and this 11th Book of Days is coming to a close.  I know more souls now than ever, and I’ve seen more eyes now than ever.

I have peace.  I have everything.

A destiny of helping other flowers grow.

February 6, 1997 – Thursday – 10:40 a.m.

 

I am a boy

I have blonde hair

And a crooked chin

I am tall

But my patience is short

I like eagles

I like the color green

And to watch movies

I am skinny

But my memory is fat

I dream of flying

I dream of freedom in my soul

And of love

I write a lot

But I am the only one who reads them

I am an actor

I make good grades

And I like to read my Bible

I like to laugh

But I learn more from sadness

I keep a journal

I keep a Book of Days

And a collection of pictures

I want to tell stories

But I don’t even understand my own

 

December 29, 1996 – Sunday – 3:09 p.m.

I plan to go to High Falls youth group tonight.  Church was really good this morning; Marcus and Nana were there.  Unless I go to the New Year’s Eve service, today was the last service I will attend there for a while.

I got my pictures developed today.

When we were in New York I walked past so many people, I saw the windows of so many homes.  Who were those people?  Were they happy?  Did they know the Lord?  Was their life full of peace or fear?  And even if I ever see any of those people again, I wouldn’t know it.

There was one girl though…

On the way to the parade, Vince and I took the Long Island Railway.  The train was very crowded.  Vince and I were standing.  A family boarded and amongst the crowd I saw the face of a young woman whose expressions on her face and light in her eyes revealed that she knew more than the ones around her.  She was truly alive.  She was a red light.  Only other red lights can see the red lights around them.  I had my camera with me.  The light in the train car was dim, but snapped a picture anyway.

When I picked up my pictures today, I quickly flipped to that one and discovered that she had looked right at me and smiled.

“I do not want to walk through Heaven’s Gates, and not see your face.  And I do not want to dance beside the streams, without you with me.  Or see the angels fill the sky.  The angels sing and all creation cries, ‘Hosanna, Savior, God our Father, Creator, Oh Savior and King.’  You’ve got to be there with me.  Oh, please, you’ve got to be there with me.  Will you be there with me.” – Cindy Morgan

I’ve come across so many people.  So many eyes, so many smiles, so many frowns, so many souls, so many spirits.  I’ve grown to love them all.  Even the strangers, even my enemies, and I want them in Heaven with me.

Even you…

Yes, you.

Why are you reading this?  Why are you reading about my small little life?  Are you a relative?  A friend?  Did I give you permission?  Did you find these old journals?  Did you possibly buy this book?  Am I now dead?!

Whether I know you or not, and however you came to read these spiral bound pages, of this I am sure…I love you and I want you in Heaven with me.  It won’t be complete without you.

 

November 8, 1996 – Friday – 6:00 p.m.

Snow is falling now.  The first of the season.  Tonight I am going to the movies with Abigail, Ann-Marie, Ray, and Jeni.  We are going to see Romeo + Juliet.  I haven’t been to the movies in a while.  I am excited.

I wish someone would look at me and offer me a special smile; a smile so innocent that we both instantly feel the chills down our spine.  I want to share love with someone.  But for now, I’m simply seen as that great Christian friend, but nothing more.

Even if no one stands by my side, I will press forward.  I’m surrounded by simple brief moments of peace and joy, and that is all I want.  I fear they come more often than I am able to realize.

Life is passing by me.  I sure do hope I’m noticing it.  I guess that is why I’m writing in this Book of Days.  It is only for me.  I doubt anyone will ever read these words.  But it helps me remember what is really important.

Heaven is real.

And sometimes I feel like it is already here.

November 3, 1995 – Friday – 12:37 a.m.

We just got back from Sharon’s house.  Dan, Allen, Vince, and myself went.  We ate dinner and then played Taboo, spoons, and talked about everything under the sun.  Sharon is the greatest!  Laura, Hannah, and Melissa were there, but Melissa stayed in her room while we did everything.  She’s the oldest sister and also seems the coldest.  Not sure why she didn’t want to hang with us.

I really did have a wonderful time.  We were over there for more than six hours.

Right after we left, once we got in the car, the guys immediately began to talk about Laura, how beautiful she was, how pretty her voice was, and so on.  I said, “Guys, four different people can’t like the same girl.”  But she is that amazing and that beautiful, so there’s no doubt the four of us have a deep crush on her.  There were times when our eyes met during conversation and I forced myself to look away, simply because I so deeply longed not to.

The feeling I felt in the car on the drive back was similar to how I felt when Marcus, Kevin, Jonathan and I were all crazy over Jenna and Tenielle.

It is happening again.

And for an odd reason, I am reminded of dreams from last winter.

But there are things more important going on.  Allen came to my room tonight and wanted to thank me.  He wanted to thank me because now he feels as if his life has truly begun now that he is close to The Lord.

I have helped someone find Jesus.

I have influenced a life.

And they thanked me for it.

I might actually be making a difference.

Jim, the pastor at Heaton, has also talked to me about different drama ministry opportunities other than the Christmas show.  He’d love for there to be a youth drama team and he’s handing it all over to me.

Therefore, my summer may be spent here, where I can watch beautiful summer sunsets with beautiful people.

Things are changing.

This past summer seems so far away.

At the beginning of this year I was in Albany, Georgia.

Where is everyone?

Where is Emily?

Where is Jonathan?

Will I ever go back?

Will I ever find out?

This Ninth Book of Days is over.  The Tenth is beginning.  These days are over.

And when I wake up tomorrow, with moisture on my window, whose name will I write with my finger?

Will I be thinking of someone who could be the other side of me?

Or will I be entertaining angels unaware?