December 16, 2000 – Saturday – 11:05 a.m.

Ten days have passed. What has happened in 10 days?

I live a beautiful life with my Jesus. Anna and I see each other every day. We stay up late, for it is difficult to say goodbye. If we have an hour of free time, we find a way to see each other.

Work at Forefront is going well, but I must ask for more money soon; I’m simply going broke. I have received additional editing and production work: a missions video for Laos and a evangelistic video. Both are paying decently well.

Once February arrives I’ll need to start earning $400 a week to be able to make my student-loan payment. I might have to get a second job.

In one week Anna will return to Florida for Christmas. She is so lovely. I visited her this morning just so I could watch her get ready for work.

I have an audition today as well as three videos I must complete before tomorrow.

I love you Lord. Thank you for this full life!

December 6, 2000 – Wednesday – 10:00 a.m.

Last night was full of beautiful movements. Anna and I went to Colonial Williamsburg and walked there among the past. My favorite was the first stage of the United States. We sat there, under trees and stars, retelling the story of our meeting.

I’m amazed by my God. I feel you smiling down on me great God. I see you, and I say thank you, and say that you are beautiful!

December 1, 2020 – Friday – 9:05 p.m.

I’ve been back in the area for four days, and I am now listening to the music that filled my summer as I drove back and forth to Acoustic Works: Enter the Worship Circle.

. . .

As of right now I am tempted to write about a girl, but I will not. I do not want to over-analyze or curse these amazing days because of what I might write down on these lined pages. Time will simply speak for itself, and my own memory will suffice for my time spent with this beautiful girl.

But do allow me to jot down some nice thoughts and images about the things we have shared.

Cobblestone streets, historic strolls, a mysterious portal into China’s ancient past, a frozen floating rocket, rejection from holiday lights at the beach, my singing of a Little Mermaid song into the acoustical corner of a female restroom lobby, swing dancing in my bedroom, and endless abundant laughter.

I thank you for all these sweet days Jesus.

. . .

I drove with Kerstin today to pick up Chris from the Raleigh/Durham airport down in North Carolina. It was good to see him.

It’s the last month of the year.

I have no idea what is next.

I guess that is a perfect place to be.

November 6, 2000 – Monday – 3:30 p.m.

I’m in Suffolk, VA shooting on location with a small part because someone saw me in an improv skit at Forefront. I have a few minutes of down time.

This past Saturday was a wonderful day. There was a Virginia Tech game on and I went over to Scott and Paige’s house to watch it with our small group. I’m not really into football, but I enjoyed the snacks and company. They had shrimp, oysters, and some amazing dipping sauces. Their kids were great fun; I played with little Grant. One time, while holding him in my arms, I walked further into the backyard and turned around to watch the perfect scenes of an autumn cookout with playing children, loving friends, and cheering fans. Things I’m glad I’m allowed to observe even if I cannot have them for myself at the moment. God has always provided other homes, families, and backyards for me to take great delight in.

The rest of the month seems pretty loaded. I have this shoot this week, then we are making a Matrix parody for church. I’ll have another week of movie parodies for church, then I’m off to New Mexico.

I’m looking forward to this trip. I need to see new sky, a new land, and new eyes. I can’t wait!

November 3, 2000 – Friday – 5:10 p.m.

Trey and I have completed a rough cut of Dang!, but it is going to cost a few more thousand dollars to finish it on 16mm, which is what is required for it to play at the Regent Film Festival at the Naro Cinema in the spring. Having already put a few thousand dollars on a credit card to make this movie, I thought I’d show it to Terry, one of the top dogs in the administration, to see if he could help. I showed it to him this afternoon.

After it was over he said, “Wow! I’ll make sure you get your money.”

And there it is! My God has remained faithful. Not only will my film show here, but also in Los Angeles at the Director’s Guild of America later next year. From there I’ll try to submit it to as many festivals as I can.

I’m still a bit speechless. I feel very thankful inside. I’m making movies, and I stand in awe of it every day.

On a totally different note, I’ve met some amazing girls this past week. Perhaps I know my movie is good, and that has improved my confidence, which makes me a bit more appealing than I usually would be. Oh, I wonder if that movie will ever get made.

There’s a girl out there somewhere praying for me, and there’s a song inside each us of that neither of us have ever heard. We will hear it soon, when we find one another.

Oh God, I’m amazed by you.

October 29, 2000 – Sunday – 4:38 p.m.

Well, it’s been an interesting, wonderful, and tiring few days.

Wednesday through Saturday I worked on Kerstin’s portfolio project “Exchange.” Being on that set for the past two days were particularly wonderful because Anna and I talked with each other like little kids. Anna is a theater student from Florida who arrived last semester. She’s the first person I’ve met here who has the personality of the girls I enjoy the most, those who just relax and delight in being with you as though they were a child. She reminds me of my dear friends from Lees-McRae. She’s a cool little hippie chick! I invited her to Forefront this morning, and she showed up! What a wonderful girl!

After the baptism service at church tonight, I’m going to go to a Wig Party at Haley’s. I’m wearing an old man wig. So there is this evening, and then only two full days remain in October.

Only two more months of the year 2000.

I wonder what November will hold.

December.

2001.

September 22, 2000 – Friday – 3:30 p.m.

Many days have passed since my last journal entry. Let me try to sum up what has happened.

I began working at Forefront, so I’ve been around many of the staff: Rolon, Kevin, Chris, Matt, Christi, and sometimes Vince and Joe.

While on a location scout for ‘The Accuser,’ a five-minute short film the university is paying for, I got in a car accident because the dudes in the back told me to take an immediate left, and I did, right into a fish truck that was coming up behind me. I have a nice huge dent on the left side, but no one was hurt.

I’ve been swamped with production both at Regent and for Forefront. I’ve got two 16mm films in the works now, as well as two more videos I just finished editing this morning.

That’s mainly why I haven’t written, I just been making movies. It’s been freeing to just be running around shooting a quick Forefront video, prepping a movie with an actual budget, or editing quietly on the iMac the church gave me.

Dan is completely depressed over Theresa. He was convinced God told him she was to be his future wife, but he definitely shouldn’t have told her that. He is now questioning if God exists at all.

Sarah wrote me a lovely letter, but I’ve been busy with film-making that I haven’t give it much thought. After getting my pictures from Dan and Abigail’s wedding, I discovered a perfect picture of the two of us.

I’m sure if I hadn’t been so busy I’d try to pursue her again, so I really thankful I have been busy.

This evening I’ll be selling nachos at a local air show. The band Train is performing. They have a song called ‘Meet Virginia’ that comes on the radio all time. I sing it at the top of lungs while driving around town.

On Wednesday morning I’ll be leaving for Grundy, VA. It is eight hours away.

In two months I’ll be in Mexico for the first time.

Can the year be ending so soon?

Christi, on the Forefront staff, is a beautiful, single, 24-year-old, Children’s Ministry Director. I’m trying not to dwell on that fact too much.

We had lunch together a few days ago. She’s fun, but is lacking encouragement.

I have shown the latest cut of Dang! to an experienced filmmaker in the area. He says he’s never seen a more perfect student film.

Thank you God for what you are doing.

May I continue to serve you.

I love you so.

September 1, 2000 – Friday – 4:00 p.m.

I left after work last night and arrived here just before midnight.  So, ‘August and everything after’ actually begins here in Banner Elk.  Perfect.

Curtis and Megan and I stayed here in Dan’s new place.  I’m here now, just chillin’ and listening to Caedmon’s Call.

Mason and Marisa are back up here for school.  I went to visit Mason after Dan, Curtis, Allen and I went to Johnson City, TN to pick up our Tuxedos.  It was a fun little trip down the mountain.  I do love my friends.

While in Mason’s room I called Sarah, yes my old Sarah.  She came over and we found the time to go for a walk before she had to be in Highlanders.

The things we both said were beautiful.  She apologized.  I apologized.  We talked about rainbows.  I felt my heart beating loudly inside me.  I haven’t felt that in a very long time.  My eyes never left her as she performed during Highlanders.  Oh God, don’t let me get too weird while I’m here for this wedding.  You are changing Sarah, and I don’t want to get in the way.

The morning was spent with Dan’s family in a cottage near a place where I used to walk. I feel reborn.  I feel different.  I feel changed.  Thank you Jesus for this new beginning and may we do it again tomorrow.

Be with Sarah.  If it is your will, allow us to go for another walk again tonight.

Thank you for this weekend Jesus.  I love your forgiveness and salvation.

August 18, 2000 – Friday – 7:20 a.m.

Jonathan, if he is still alive, turns 24 today.  Which made yesterday my 24th birthday.  I ate lunch at Applebee’s with some of my co-workers.  It was nice of them to buy lunch for me.

Today we are having a pizza party for lunch, and tonight my Forefront small group is going out for seafood in Pungo.

Tomorrow my Regent small group is having a beach party up on the Eastern Shore.

Many great things are happening.  I’m enjoying work a bit more, for my boss is giving me more responsibility.

It will soon be September.  There is something special in the air when September arrives.  The slightest morning chill gives me so much hope that nothing will ever stay the same.  It reminds me to appreciate what I have, for it will soon fade away.

August 4, 2000 – Friday – 11:45 a.m.

I’m sitting on a slanted picnic table in a park near the Library and Community Center of Sterling, Virginia.  I left at 7:30 this morning to drive up here, because someone associated with a sister company of Acoustic Works is going to train me on Dreamweaver.

My meeting isn’t until 1:00 p.m., but I left early just to spend some time alone in a new town.  Three kids are playing loudly on the playground near me.  I’m glad they are happy.

I received Dan and Abigail’s wedding invitation in the mail.  It makes me both happy and sad.  Only Vince and I have yet to get married, and he is in Bolivia.

After Dan and Abigail’s wedding, I wonder if I should stop visiting Banner Elk.  I can so easily get stuck in the past.  It may be better for me to not see that land for a while.

. . .

I’ve sat here in silence for a while now.  I fear I have a broken heart.  I feel Jeni, Sarah, Emily, and Marie have each broken it in their own slight way.  But most of all, I feel I have broken it as well.

An older woman just brought two little blonde girls down to the playground, but then she turned around and walked away after she saw three Black kids playing on it.  And now the two white girls are sad and asking a bunch of questions.  They don’t understand why they can’t play.

Such a sight makes me so thankful I grew up with Marcus, Danny, and Peter.  And that I even had a Black youth pastor for a while.

Life seems to get harder as I grow older.  As a child, I would have never noticed the subtle racism I just experienced.

Jesus, you are my savior.  Am I living fully in your salvation?  Am I accepting all your mercy and forgiveness?  All I want is you.

When it comes down to it, I just want that treehouse covered in snow with the Braveheart soundtrack in my ear.  I want you all around me like that.

Can I have that everyday?

I just realized this is my second time in Sterling, VA.  The first time was with Rachel’s mom when she brought me up to Chrysalis in 1997.  In fact, that was exactly three years ago, for I remember it was in early August.

Is there any love left in me?

It feels like I’m losing all my friends.  I can never have Banner Elk and Lees-McRae again, so I should stop looking and waiting for it.

Do you still have a plan for me God?

Thank you for the leaf that just floated down and sat next to me.  I want more quiet moments alone with you.

Please don’t send me a girl if she’ll only distract me from you, or if I’ll distract her from you as well.  Too many hearts have been bruised.  I want to give all of my heart to you.