October 22, 1998 – Thursday – 10:00 p.m.

I talked with Sharon tonight. Snow was in the air over Avery County this morning.  I wasn’t there to see it. October 27th was the first snowfall of my last LMC winter.  I didn’t realize how true that statement was when I wrote it nearly a year ago.

I’ve realized when I write these words in these spiral-bound books that they will never go away.  All 13 books are in my sight at this moment.  They sit on a shelf in my closet in front of me.  They are a record of nearly the past six years of my life.

I put Christmas lights up in my room this evening, and it caused me to miss the wintery feel of Banner Elk so much.  So, another day is closing.  One of the final ones for Tammie and Jose in this land.

I turned in four copies of the first draft of “Eyebrows” to the school’s team of producers yesterday.  They said I was the first of the final four to turn it in.  They seemed pleased and impressed.

And so God moves me on.  My memories fight with the present moment every day.  My heart questions why we can’t go back, but it also longs to see what is ahead.

I have no one to really talk to here.  I miss Vince and our deep talks to Counting Crows’ “August and Everything After.”  We had a ritual.  We would start with track four, “Perfect Blue Buildings,” and play it through to the end.  We would turn off the lights and stare up at his glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling, most of which were placed there by Laura, and we’d talk of God, love, and beauty until the midnight hour.

I miss Dan and I pondering over the questions of life while playing “Tetris 2” on the Super Nintendo.

I miss riding in Curtis’ car and staring out the window in deep thought.  He’s always ask me what was on my mind.  I’d always tell him.  I felt listened to.

I miss Allen disagreeing with my way of thinking.  He’d ask my advice and then go do the opposite.  But somehow it still made me feel loved by him.

And I miss Charlie, the one I’ve known the longest.

But God needs me elsewhere.  His breath is blowing me forward.  So, I continue and I do this not for me, for all I want is heaven, but God asks me to wait and spend more time with his creation first.

I cannot argue with that.  So that is what I will do.

But how can I live in today when I long for the past?  How can I make new friends when all I want are my old ones?  How can I help save others from a world I can’t admit I’m in?

Why did you make me this way God?  To find comfort in asking questions and not needing the answers.  Is that what faith is?  I don’t need the answers Lord, I just need to know you are listening.

I miss you.  I miss the eyes I’ve never seen.  You comfort me more than my memories and my Teddy Bear from Tenielle.  I want to hold you instead as I fall asleep.  Be with me tonight sweet Jesus, and take me to be with you.  I want to awake in heaven, but if I’m here tomorrow, I will laugh and play in your love.

Heaven feels closer tonight.

How perfect your grace is.

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June 22, 1998 – Monday – 10:36 p.m.

It has been seven months since Sarah and I began.

Seven.

Seven is God’s number of completion.

Things are completed.

The end is here.

God did this. He used me.

Praise the Lord!

I have a dream. Something I want in this life. I call it “three in one.”

Jesus, my girl, and me.

I told Sarah about it. I wanted us to have that. But we never did. She told me she wasn’t ready to talk about her spirit, and she made me believe that her relationship with God was too personal to share, so I waited.

I have waited seven months.

Now that I am leaving, she has confessed to me that she never talked to me about her faith because she was afraid I wouldn’t want to be with her if I knew what she believed.  She called herself a bitch, since she knew the most important part of my life, yet she decided to live a silent lie about it.

It felt good for her to finally talk.  We talked so much more, but I will not give every detail here.  I love her still and I have forgiven her.  I let her know that I was here if she ever needed to talk about what she believes.

She simply doubts, and that is often a great place to be in, for it leads to a deeper faith.

We plan to see each other on Friday and then that will be it.

April 28, 1998 – Tuesday – 10:30 a.m.

We watched the film projects on Sunday.  Everyone enjoyed mine tremendously.  It had people in tears.  I was told by several others that it blew everyone else’s away.  But it even got me though, and I made it.  I came to my room and cried, for I knew all of this was almost over.  Sarah and Jessi came over to hold me.  We all cried together.

And then there was last night.  I don’t know how to write about last night.  Perhaps many days later I will be able to.

But something was on my heart.

Sarah wanted me to tell her.

I told her I was afraid she wouldn’t understand.

She wanted to know.

I told her in the most loving way I knew how, and afterwards she stood up, went into my bathroom, and vomited in my toilet.

Hours later I was able to tell her something else that I have never spoken aloud to anyone, including myself, in all my 21 years.

This is all stuff that relates to my faith, and to my fears that others may not believe as deeply as I do.  But my sharing that in an effort to be understood only caused Sarah to feel rejected.

Oh God, why am I the way I am?

 

March 13, 1998 – Friday – 5:30 p.m.

The 13th of March.  My thoughts are running deep.  I haven’t seen Sarah in two days and I’m not sure if I miss her.

I’m looking forward to moving away from this place just so I can find out how much it actually means to me.

I need to keep reminding myself that this world has nothing for me.  That this is not my home and I do not belong here.  I have a peace that passes all understanding and I need to share that with whomever I can before it’s too late.  But I am not their savior.  I’m just a fellow passenger.

I am never alone.  I love my solitude.  I always feel God with me.

So what about these other creations around me?  Am I just to love them?  Can it be that simple?

It sure seems to be.

I don’t want this gift of life to escape me.  I want to live and be happy in Jesus.  I want to be happy in love, to truly be wherever I am.  To give and not take.

Oh, love take over me, I want to do everything the right way!

January 3, 1998 – Saturday – 3:06 p.m.

Last night Marcus and I went to a Bible study with Mom and Henry where the group prayed for us and spoke words of encouragement to us.  Through them God told me not to be afraid of this world, which I honestly have been.  He said that he loves me, to not be sad, but to be filled with his love and joy.  He told me that he loves me and there was a place for me at his table.  I just needed to come and eat.  I don’t have to wait for an invitation for I am always welcome.  He said something is being birthed inside of me, something is growing, there is a pregnancy inside me and to stay close to him.  It will be revealed in time.

God touched me last night.

He held me.

He is doing an awesome work in my life and I have no reason to be afraid.

January 1, 1998 – Thursday – 2:30 p.m.

Man cannot walk on water.  That is impossible; at least in man’s eye.  But Jesus did it, and not only Jesus, but Peter too.

If Peter had enough faith to walk on water, then why can’t I fly?

The people of this world, of these cities, these town, they are only content with walking, with standing, with sitting.

But I know I have wings inside me.  I can feel them every day.  Do I only have to believe? But I do believe!  I believe I can fly higher, higher in love, higher in worship, higher in health.

Yet the people who like to sit around want to shoot me down, but I can’t and won’t let them ruin me.

I have to fly.

I have to use my wings or I will die!

October 25, 1997 – Saturday – 11:15 a.m.

Last night was a wonderful blessing.  Everything was healed and mended and even a part of my longing and my wishing came to be.

I met with Abigail to go over some “Masks” beats.  We met in her room at 10:00 p.m.  And after our little rehearsal, we talked until one in the morning.  Ann-Marie stopped by and we just had the best time, the three of us.

And during this time, Abigail let me in on what she thinks and feels.  She found comfort and joy in sharing those things with me.

She is still in love with K.C.  She writes him letters she never finds the courage to send.  Her model friend, Stephanie, is growing in the modeling world, but is losing her faith.  Abigail says she loves our friendship and feels she can tell me anything.  We feel perfect right now like this, even though our past has seen some rocky soil.  That’s all thanks to me, but I’m still thankful for the ups and downs since it makes us appreciate each other more.

Thank you God, thanks for mending our friendship.

I told her before I left, “If I could have anything I want, I would want to be that guy that introduces you, Ann-Marie, and Tracey to the men God intended for you.”  And I meant it and it felt so good to know my heart.

The Jesus I love and adore lives in those three girls and they are a part of me.

Convinced of my deception

I’ve always been a fool

I fear this love reaction

Just like you said I would.

A rose could never lie

About the love it brings

And I could never promise 

To be any of those things.

If I was not so weak

If I was not so cold

If I was not so scared of

Being broken, growing old

I would be

I would be…

Blessed are the shallow

For depth they’ll never find

Seems to be some comfort

In rooms I try to hide.

Exposed beyond the shadows

You take the cup from me

Your dirt removes my blindness

Your pain becomes my peace.

If I was not so weak

If I was not so cold

If I was not so scared of

Being broken, growing old

I would be

I would be

Frail.

-Jars of Clay