February 19, 1995 – Sunday – 3:30 p.m.

Church was wonderful this morning.  Laura’s family wasn’t there, so I didn’t get to see her.  Crystal wasn’t there either.  I borrowed Richard’s car to get there.  It felt good to drive again.  Now it takes me five minutes to get to church; back home it took me twenty-five.

After church, I ran lights for A Piece of My Heart and then came here to my room.  The show opens Tuesday.  It’s a good show and I’m glad I could help out.

Michelle, a girl here at school, asked me if Jeni and I would ever get back together.

“I don’t want that to happen,” I said.

And I don’t.  I don’t want her anymore.  Deep down inside me I wish she would go back to Cincinnati to be with her mother and just finish up school there.  I am not going to be her husband.  I don’t want to be.  However, I’m still thankful for her and I’m sure that I will appreciate her more in the future.  I pray that she find love, Lord.

Yesterday I did homework all day.  I did stop to watch a movie called The Seventh Sign that came on TV.  Demi Moore starred in it.  I thought it was pretty awesome!

That evening I decided to go for another walk with my Lord.

We walked along Elk River.  It was a nice night.  There was a small breeze out.  On our way back we stopped at the bridge and we stayed there for a while.

I told Him some stuff.  He told me some stuff.  I laughed.  He laughed.

I sang to Him.  He listened and smiled.

We had fun.

Then I said, “Lord, this has been one of the greatest nights of my life.  This cool winter air.  This beautiful waterfall and light mist that blows up in the air.  The sound of the rushing water and You next to me.  I’m so happy.  I don’t think I’ve ever been happier.  I could stay this way forever.”

“You can,” He said.

I smiled.  A huge smile.

These years will pass.  One by one.  But I’ll never lose my smile.  It’s the smile my Jesus gave me.

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November 2, 1994 – Wednesday – 3:00 p.m.

At this moment I sit on a large rock, surrounded by rushing water and other large rocks.  I sit in the middle of the Elk River near the back campus of Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, North Carolina.

The past 18 years of my life have brought me here to this moment.

Lees-McRae College!

My lifestyle will be very different five years from now.

But I am on a quest.  A journey!  I want to show the whole world the love of Christ.  That is all.  That is why I am here.

While I’m doing that I will love the Lord and worship him in all I do.  In order to show the love of Christ to this world I must learn.  Nothing I learn will be wasted.

This land, these mountains, they have been placed here by God.  Two days ago I stood on top of Beech Mountain and saw the whole world.  I realized then how small I was.

Yet, just like these mountains, I too have been placed here.

And since God can move mountains he will one day move me.

And I will go and add to my collection; not forgetting the ones behind.

Because, like the mountains, God has placed them here to help me and to teach me.

I am thankful for them.

And I will remember them.

September 23, 1994 – Friday – 11:50 p.m.

What a Friday it was!

Jeni and I ate breakfast together this morning.  She is so great.  We also ate lunch and dinner together.  The two of us and Richard, Tracey, Ellen, Chase, and a few others, played spoons (a card game) up in Richard’s room.  We then took Ellen to a little camp down the road and played some games there.  We played “This is a what!” as well.

Jeni and I did our laundry together tonight.  And afterwards we went up to her room.  We watched Dick Van Dyke with Tracey.  After it was over, she walked me back to my dorm, but for some reason we just walked right on past it and went down to Elk River, crossed the bridge and sat there above the waterfall for a while.

As time passed, I asked her if she wanted to pray.  She said yes.  We prayed for us.  We prayed that God would keep us close to each other and close to Him.  We prayed for our future and our years here at college.

Tonight, Jeni told me about how her last boyfriend gave her a teddy bear when they broke up.  There was a rubber band on it that she had never taken off.  And she said that she wouldn’t take it off until she found a guy she like more than him.  She took the rubber band off last night while I was in her room.

We basically just sat there in the dark with our arms around each other and the sound and the mist of the waterfall filling the space around us.  I told her how beautiful I thought she was.  We told each other why we were so attracted to each other.  Then, in the midst of that conversation, I said, “Can I kiss you?”

“If you want to…” she said.

And then, for what seemed like eternity, we sat above the rushing water, with our bodies so close together and kissed each other.  She put her tongue in my mouth.  It was awesome.  My first kiss.

I walked her back to her dorm and we kissed again.

“You’re so cool,” I said.

“I think you’re awesome,” she said.

I kissed her again and said goodnight.

On September 23, 1994 I kissed the prettiest girl in the world.  My first kiss, yes, but it didn’t feel like it.

May I sleep in your peace Lord.

September 22, 1994 – Thursday – 3:35 p.m.

Remember this day!

Last night after rehearsal I walked Jeni back to her dorm and asked her if she wanted to go for a walk today at 1:00 p.m.  She said yes.

So I called her at 12:55 p.m. and reminded her.  I met her at her dorm and we took at walk down to Elk River on the back side of campus.  We talked about a few things.  We saw something really neat on the other side of the creek, so we tried to cross.  One part was too wide between the rocks, so I suggested that she go first.  I’m not sure why I offered for her to go first, but she did and, yep, she fell in.  She fell right on her but and her jeans were soaked.  We both laughed and picked on each other.  We sat down and talked about one thing, knowing we were thinking about another.  I knew it was up to me to say something.

As we walked back, I said this:

“Jeni, I know that I have told you about meeting my friends at Carowinds and how they will probably want to go around with me.  But the one person I really want to go on all the rides with and see all the concerts with is you.  A week ago, I didn’t even know your name, but now I can’t stop thinking about you and I think you should know that.”

She smiled and said, “Well, I’m glad you feel that way.”

I didn’t know what to say, so I just took a hold of her hand.  “So, can I see you?”  I asked.

“Yes!” she said.

I’m suppose to meet her for dinner at five.

My roommate tells me that my brother Kevin called, as well as some other girl.  He didn’t get her name.

September 22, 1994.

I am about five weeks older than Jeni.

Veronica was five years younger.

I know it sounds stupid, but this is a first for me.