November 21, 1999 – Sunday – 8:35 a.m.

It has been so long since I’ve written.  I guess I’ve been occupied.

Marie and I have been affirming each other more and more.  She is coming to church with me this morning.

Sarah sent me an email saying she was in love with me and that she is sorry for all she did.  I wrote her back forgiving her and telling her that I met the woman I wanted to marry.

I also wrote Mary, and she said for me not to go off and find a girl when there is one in Oklahoma who is still in love with me.

Mary and Sarah once meant so much to me, but now they only offer words on a screen. Marie is right in front of me.

I acted in two different directing scenes on Friday and I even directed my own.  All went well.

Vince is coming to spend about three weeks with me.  The bookstore needs some extra help, so he is going to live with me and take the temporary job.

These days are just full of unbelievable grace.  Marie is turning into my best friend.  I’m creating the Lord’s art.  My soul is completely free.  I’m finding beauty in this land, and it is mostly in Marie’s eyes.  What did I ever do to deserve such beauty?

The days ahead hold so much change.

It is a full moon on Tuesday, so Marie and I will return to that field in North Carolina to celebrate a full passing of the moon over our great friendship.  She will travel home for Thanksgiving the next morning and I will stay here and try to write a short screenplay.  I’ll visit with Tracey, Vince, and Justin, and I’ll work in the bookstore.

December will bring the final weeks of school, as well as all the final preparations for DANG!.  We had a rehearsal for it last night and it was just perfect.  God’s hands are all over this!

Marie and I are making plans to see each other over Christmas.  I can’t wait to meet her family.  Thank you Jesus for handling this relationship.  You are all that is perfect and pure and beautiful.  I love you Lord!

 

October 28, 1999 – Thursday – 2:10 p.m.

Something is happening.

How can God’s mercy be so grand?  How can he give me so much?  Another one of my scripts was chosen for the school to see a full draft of.  It is titled Silhouette.

I enjoy teaching the class at church on Wednesdays.  Sterling, Kimberly, Melissa, Lauren, and all the rest are such a blessing.

I showed Sterling and her family the film I made with them.  It turned out wonderfully.

But above all those good things, thank you Lord for Marie.  Please have your way with us God, but even the simple possibility has blessed me beyond belief.

I saw her today in the bookstore and she looked simply amazing.  We laughed and talked and both admitted that we didn’t sleep much the night after our rendezvous with the bright full moon.  I asked her to go for a walk with me at Northwest River Park on Saturday.  She said yes.

You are the giver of all good things my Lord.  I love you so!

October 8, 1999 – Friday – 2:00 p.m.

Last night I cut class and went up to Richmond to see Caedmon’s Call in concert.  Jill Phillips and Bebo Norman performed as well.  Jill Phillips is from Chesapeake!  The show that Lindy and I didn’t get to see…I saw last night.  I went by myself, but I got to see my brother and Dad.

At the concert I hung out with some people.  I met this guy named Jeff and this guy named Burke I think, who is an actor doing a film in the area.  He lives in New York, is a model/actor, and says he is doing a film with Denzel Washington.  And he is a Christian.  I got his email.

It was great to be around other Christians and become friends with them in the span of one evening.  How small this world is.  I love the United States.  Anything is possible.

God is doing separate things through so many, but they are all for his glory.  I expect him to do great things through me.  He died for such things.  We have the favor of God all over us.  He goes before us.  Oh, I love you Jesus.  I hope to show others more of you.  I love the beauty I see in others.  I love all the potential.

Thank you for my story Lord.  I don’t want another one.

September 25, 1999 – Saturday – 2:10 p.m.

I’m in Lynchburg, Virginia!  Lindy should be here soon.  Chris didn’t come because he has to play drums at church in the morning.  So it’s just Lindy and I with front row tickets and everything!

I pitched a couple of five minute short films yesterday.  They went over really well.  I pray one will get selected and I get to direct it.  Each selected film receives a budget of $5,000.

All of my corporation stuff is finished.  I opened a bank account and everything.

Three pages remain in this journal.  The last time I was in Lynchburg was Thanksgiving with Vince and Allen back in 1998.  That was ten months ago.  The Virginian and American flags fly above me now.  I am on the Liberty campus.  DC Talk went to school here.  It is nice to be among the mountains.

Last night I went to a huge school-wide barbecue at Pat Robertson’s house.  It was really fun and I met and talked with a couple of girls named Bridgette and Christina.

As I reflect back on these past six months it seems like this book begins and ends with Lindy.  It is nice to have a good friend that expands space and time.  I’ve also been to Maine and California, I held a girl named Mary, and I started a motion picture production company.

So, Jesus, how are we?

Am I where you want me to be?

Am I free?

September 15, 1999 – Wednesday – 4:30 p.m.

Hurricane Floyd is on his way up the coast, but my soul is calm.  All classes and work have been cancelled for tomorrow.  I bought some new music today.  Music makes me so happy and peaceful, especially the music that sings of my savior.

Today was SEE YOU AT THE POLE.  I went to Kimberly’s school to pray.

Early in the afternoon I drove through the rain to downtown Norfolk to go the federal building, but it was closed.  So I just walked around in the rain.  It was nice.  I went to Town Pointe Park and to the Armed Forces memorial.  And there at that flag pole, I placed my SEE YOU AT THE POLE bracelet.  I stood there in the rain, and I thought of all those who had died for my freedom to pray to God in this nation.  And even as I’m writing this, I’m still so thankful.

August 22, 1999 – Sunday – 10:00 a.m.

There are nine days left in the month of change, but I don’t know what has changed other than my age and my roommate.

I’m so clueless as to what is going on.  Perhaps I like it that way.  I feel the Lord calling me to Wilmington, NC.  That feels right and makes sense.  Could only 9 1/2 months remain here?

I feel I have no control over my life.  I’m just some leaf in the wind.  If so, why am I receiving such a life?  I’m not worthy of it.  It is the thing I enjoy, the thing I fear, and who I am.  Was I created to share? Am I an apostle who has no home?

I don’t want to know the answers God.  Honest, I’m afraid of them.  I just want to move forward, knowing one thing: that you will never let me go.  I’d rather have your storm, than my peace.

It doesn’t have to make sense to me.  Only to you.

I don’t need any miracles.  I don’t need any signs or wonders.  I see you every time I open my eyes.  I just need you to life my life for me while I love you.  I don’t have the strength to do both.

 

July 22, 1999 – Thursday – 3:06 p.m.

I’ve been working on the summer film since Monday.  It has been fun, but tiring.  Jason and Brandon were extras last night and we met this absolutely beautiful 16-year-old Italian girl named Anna-Marie.  She’s really needs Jesus, hopefully she follow up on our invitation to church.

I took the convertible out and am now at Munden Point in South Virginia Beach.  It’s really pretty out here; lots of water.

I called Sarah the other night and she seemed excited to talk to me, but then she got another call and said she would call me back, but never did.  Typical Sarah.

Maryanne, a girl from Regent, got a three-day job as a Production Assistant on The Green Mile starring Tom Hanks.  I hooked her up with it since it is being film near Blowing Rock, NC.  She is going to stay with Lindy.  I’m kinda jealous, ha, ha!

It is a beautiful day and I’m alive.  I think I’ll go for a walk and just talk to my Jesus.

 

July 11, 1999 – Sunday – 10:10 p.m.

The events of the past four days seem very distant and foggy.  We’ve had plane trouble, so we are still at the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport.  Needless to say, things have been crazy.  Let me try to recap.

I did see Brandon and Sara and their little Madison at Disneyland.  Mary spent a little time with us.  It was so good to see them.  We took a break from the park in the middle of the day and I went with Brandon back to his hotel room.  Little Madison and I played together there.  We had so much fun!  She’s the cutest little girl.

Disney was a good time, and Mary and I were able to have some alone time there as well.  I saw the Fanstamic show that night.  It was really neat; such imagination!

Thursday we went about an hour east of L.A. to Fontana and spent the day with this youth church out there.  They treated us so kindly.  During that time Mary and I had a chance to talk, and we really opened up to each other, which may not have been a good thing.  I can hardly remember what was said now, but it was a sweet and precious time.

However, she has been acting really funny the past few days.  She’s been acting really selfish and her conversation used to be really Godly, but now it has been totally petty and pointless.  I’m not sure what happened, but when yesterday came, I was so ready to go home.

We went to Santa Monica and there the whole group just stopped acting like a group of Christians doing ministry and started acting really worldly; especially Mary.  I hated it.

After sunset we went to the observatory near the Hollywood Sign.  I needed to get away from everyone, so I slipped away and found a trail down to the left.  I sat there, finally alone and sang to my Jesus.  All of the man-made lights below me were beautiful.  I saw the entirety of the L.A. skyline and the surrounding areas and there the Lord and I had a special time above those 13 million people.  There were even fireworks off in the distance.

I thought about who I was and what I was supposed to do.  I thought about how Mary was perfect for me on some days and totally wrong for me on other days.  I thought about the homeless woman I saw try to kill herself by laying down in front of an on-coming train.  And I thought about how natural it felt to be in L.A.  Finally, I thought about how thankful I was that I’d soon be leaving.

Last night, before we left the observatory, we had a time of reflection where everyone went around and said goodbye to me and shared their feelings about me.  I’m leaving the team when we land in Norfolk, but they have another couple of weeks together.  They all said very sweet things, things I’ve heard others say about me before.  The greatest compliment though was that I not only taught them the Masks drama, but that the example of my life revealed to each member of the team the mask that each of them was hiding behind.  They told me that I have a wisdom unlike any they’ve ever encountered.

I shared with them how hard it was to strip my soul bare for every new group of people, but that doing so also continually helps me and keeps me open; though sometimes it feels like it nearly destroys me.

. . .

So, I’m in the air now, flying far above both land and clouds.  I don’t know about Mary and I, except that I will try to keep in touch through email.  I’m looking forward to getting some things together and organized for the next year of school.  I hope to visit some Lees-McRae friends during the first couple of weeks in August.

Thank you for these days sweet Jesus.  Thank you for molding me and for fixing me.

And thank you Mary.  I will remember L.A.

July 5, 1999 – Monday – 10:40 a.m.

This has been the greatest of all mornings.

I sit now in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport in Texas.  I was here nearly a year ago.  I sure didn’t know then that I’d be back.  The rest of the team is in the air right now, on their way to L.A.  I, because I’m an adult, was forced to take a later flight since the other one was over booked.

So, I’m alone now, and that is a good thing.  I need this time to write.

We had an outreach in Chesapeake on Saturday and afterwards the team went to see Tarzan at the movies.  I sat next to Mary.  Our elbows rested on the same arm rest and touched.  And around the middle of the movie, we discovered that we could touch each other’s fingers through the cup holder without any of the team seeing.

It was awesome.

After the show everyone went to my apartment and some of the girls and Corey cooked for everyone.  Mary and I got a chance to talk again.  We wanted to make sure that we weren’t just using each other for a little summer fling.  We hold each other in the highest respect.  The night ended in a crazy conversation about our most embarrassing moments.  Everyone was laughing so hard. A dozen or more teens were in my apartment having the time of their life and not even realizing it.  It was priceless.

July 4th was the next morning and we ministered at a small church in Toano, which is the same town my grandparents live in.  I went to visit both sets.  I even saw my dad, who didn’t look well at all.  He’s gotten insanely fat.  He also told me that Kevin got in another accident last night.

I hurriedly returned to my Master’s Commission gang, fully aware that I’d rather spend time with them than my own father.  We decided to take the super long and scenic route back to Chesapeake, which involved a ferry ride.  That evening, Meagan and Mary and I went to Meagan’s beautiful country home out in Pungo.  The three of us drove to Sandbridge and spend the final hours of the last 4th of July of the 1900s playing in the deep dark waves of the Altantic Ocean.  An airplane made amazing glow-in-the-dark smoke trails in the star-filled sky above.  The night was perfect, but soon midnight came and the day that I am now breathing in began.

We left Sandbridge around one in the morning.  Meagan drove, Mary sat in front of me, and she would reach back and we would hold and touch each other’s hands.  We got to the house and showered all the salt and sand off of us.  Meagan went to bed and then, for about two hours, I held and touched the most amazing girl alive.

Mary and I spent the early hours of this morning realizing this would be the only chance we had to touch each other.  So, we cautiously spoke into each other’s hearts while guarding them at the same time.  We did not sleep.  It was the most precious few hours of my history.  How beautiful was its purity!  Her soft skin.  Her eyebrows.  Her neck.  Her back.  Her ears.  Her hair.  Oh, and she wanted to shave my face, so I let her.  And then I shaved her legs.  How weird and crazy we are!

I want her so bad, but I’ll only be around her for another week, and in the busy town of L.A. at that.  Our conversation this morning was so precious.  We were no longer two team leaders, but we were man and woman, stopping the world for a few brief hours, so we could acknowledge the value in each other.  Thank you for this morning God.  Use it for your glory!

Now she flies over New Mexico, while I sit in Texas.  Why do goodbyes take place?  Why do I have to part from this girl?  If coming to Virginia Beach did anything for me, it introduced me to Mary, and that makes everything worth it!

Above that though, God has used her to do a healing in me.  My faith in Christian women has grown strong again.  She and I are no accident.  We are no mishap.  This is divine.  I’m not saying she is the one, I’m just saying she has been divinely appointed to me for this brief time, as I have been to her.

Sweet Jesus, you never let me go.  You are my desire.  You bring such good things into my life.  Thank you!

 

July 3, 1999 – Saturday – 9:15 a.m.

Mary and I talked yesterday about our relationship with one another.  It was amazing.  We were so honest and so smart about it.  Thank you God for your wisdom.  She said that when I touched her face on Thursday night, she melted.  I told her that God has been speaking to me very much about my career through this trip, and that he said nothing about a girl.  That doesn’t mean that we are not put together for a purpose though.  So, we are just soaking each other in, appreciating this time.  God, please protect our hearts.  Please have your will.

Last night we ministered at Parkway Temple.  God did a work in me, preparing me for L.A.  I cannot believe the work he is doing in me.  I see now that I am so small.  I used to think I was called to save Hollywood, but I’m actually just a small town church kid going to film school.  I’m not called to break down the chains of bondage around Hollywood, I’m just called to pray, to praise his name, to live in holiness, and to love others.

He’s the one doing everything.  He is all powerful and mighty.  I just wake up and worship him.