April 15, 1995 – Saturday – 1:20 a.m.

It’s been a long day!  To me it is still Friday, so I will refer to it as such.

I went out to eat with Dan, Charlie, and Jaime today.  We ate at The Parson’s Table in Historical Jonesboro, Tennessee.  Dan works there and had a $50 gift certificate to help cover the cost for all of us, but it was still an expensive lunch.  Amazing meal though.  The restaurant is beautiful.  It’s in this old church.

After lunch we went out to Dan’s place.  Dan is 25-years-old.  He is from Oregon and currently attending Emmanuel School of Religion in Johnson City.  He arrived here about two weeks before I did.  He stays at a house with four other guys who attend Emmanuel.  He lives out in the country in Eastern Tennessee.  It was so beautiful out there today.  The three of them talked summer business for the youth group.  I went for a walk while they did that for their back yard is a huge mountain.

I found a trail and followed it a little ways.  The trees are beginning to bloom.  It was so beautiful.

Dan’s hobby is photography.  He’s very good at it.  I saw several of his photo albums.  I realized that there is so much I don’t know and so much I haven’t seen.  When he came to school here, he drove all the way from Oregon to Eastern Tennessee.

Do you realize how much of America that is?  I’ve seen so little of America.

Dan went to work and on the way back home we stopped at Milligan College to simply look at it.  It was a beautiful school.  I saw a student walking on the sidewalk by himself.  I realized that he had loved somebody in his past.  And at the same time he was walking, there was a girl on that campus thinking of another guy on that campus.  Somebody is falling in love with someone else on that campus right now.

Every student has their own story to tell.

When Charlie and I got back to Lees-McRae we had a water gun fight.  We both soaked each other.  We went to see Tommy Boy later on.  It was funny, but Act Ventura and Billy Madison were funnier.

Charlie really is just a big baby.  Tonight he did everything just to get his way.  It hurts a lot.  He puts me down and doesn’t even know he is doing it.  He thinks that Performing Arts is a waste of my college life.  He just doesn’t see me.

I complement him all the time, about how good of a preacher he is and about how I value you him as my brother in Christ.  But he just tosses me around.  And I let him.

Perhaps he will see me one day.

The guy who lives across the hall from me is named Mike.  Tonight, around midnight he and I went to see the Brown Mountain Lights.  It is supposedly an unexplainable natural phenomenon.  During the day you see nothing, but when you look towards that ridge at night you see what looks like a flashing city, but it is only trees.  Some say they are UFOs, others say they are the spirits of dead Indians.

There are so many mysteries on this earth that cannot be explained.

And truthfully…I think Emily and I are one of them.

I love you Emily.

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September 26, 1993 – Sunday – 7:15 p.m.

The church fellowship was today, so we didn’t have church tonight.

I just skimmed through my first three Books of Days.  I feel so stupid.  When I first started my journal I never wrote much about skit group or youth group; I just wrote about Veronica and she isn’t half as important to me as those memories are now.  Today was so hard after yesterday’s realizations.  I can’t go back and I feel like it’s killing me.  I wish I could make you understand.

The summer of ’93 was great, but the fall, winter, and spring of ’92 and ’93 were far better.

September 12, 1992 to June 5, 1993.

So many complications with Veronica, the one I thought I loved, when the people I truly loved and still love were the group of friends whose company I took for granted.  Most of them are still around and we will continue to have great times, but right now it hurts because I know it will end soon.

Why am I like this Jesus?  Why do memories mean so much to me?

Today a little girl gave a picture to me.  I don’t know when it was taken, but it was after December and before May because Tammy is in the picture.  Jonathan is in there, too.  I realized how much I miss him.

I’m not in the picture, and neither is Marcus, but mostly everyone else is.  Look at us all!  Inseparable friends!  All happy, all smiling, covered in the joy of the Lord.

But the day will come when another group of young people will grow up in that church and we will go our own way.  But, wherever we end up, we all know who we are and whose we are.  Nothing can take that away.

The Lord just showed it to me.  I shouldn’t be sad over this; I should count it all joy.  We are the Endtime Warriors!  We are the Emmanuel Players!  Whether we are together or not, we are family.  Even if we are on the opposite sides of the globe, we will always be one.

We will grow up and never forget our youth and we will love the Lord until the end of our days.

Lord, Make us instruments of your peace,

Where there is hatred, let your love increase

Lord, make us instruments of your peace,

Walls of pride and prejudice shall cease

When we are your instruments of peace.

Where there is hatred, we will show his love

Where there is injury, we will never judge

Where there is striving, we will speak his peace

To the millions crying for release,

We will be his instruments of peace

Where there is blindness, we will pray for sight

Where there is darkness, we will shine his light

Where there is sadness, we will bear their grief

To the millions crying for relief,

We will be your instruments of peace.

Always.