May 21, 2000 – Sunday – 7:15 a.m.

It is early before church.  I think I’ve found a place to sit and think.  I’m on a park bench in the park for Lake James Residences only.  I guess it is kind of illegal for me to be here, but I need a place within walking distance from my apartment where I can go and be by myself.  There’s a nice mist in the air and turtles and fish are playing in the water below.

I have a new pair of glasses that look and feel very nice.  I’m going to be wearing my contacts a little less often I think.

Marie called last night.  I miss her so much.

Kimberly, Sterling, and I went to see Dinosaur.  It was so horrible.  It was just the same old story, and I didn’t think it looked that great.

There was a spaghetti party over at Townley’s place on Friday night, so I went and got to know some of my co-workers a bit more.

We’ve had several nighttime thunderstorms recently that have sounded awesome!

Oh God, I miss you in me.  Whatever is blocking you from being everything in me, I lay it at your feet.  Please take it away.

Life is getting very odd.  I just want to love you.  Wash me clean oh God.  Prepare me to be a living sacrifice.  May I be dead to all.  Calm my spirit, my temper, my jealousy, and my flesh.  Purify me oh God.  This is my prayer.  For I am nothing without you.  Please make me like the lilies of the valley.  I love you God.

 

April 28, 2000 – Friday – 7:53 a.m.

April is ending.  As are many other things.  I am no longer a full-time student, and Marie and I have just come through a really difficult time.

I think the past week really traumatized me, so much so that I can hardly remember the harsh words that were spoken to me.  I feel my mind is trying to forever forget them, like a scab covering a wound and allowing new skin to grow.  I’m tempted to not write about this at all, but I should put something down in these pages.

Clearly hurt and rejected after spending a week with my friends in North Carolina, a vulnerable Marie and I visited her family.  And while they are kind in action, I didn’t have a great time these past few days in New Jersey, one, because I was sick, and two, because there just wasn’t an abundance of joy and peace, at least not when you compare it to the amount of joy and peace in all my friends in Banner Elk.  So, once we headed back to Virginia, all of that pain and defensiveness bubbled up in Marie, and she became very critical toward me and of all my friends.

She said it was unnatural and immoral of me to have as many female friends as I do.  And, as if that didn’t hurt enough, she then accused me of only being involved with the youth group at Parkway because I was sexually attracted to all the girls in the youth group.  She said that my friendship with girls like Sterling, Christin, and Kimberly was inappropriate and that I should be ashamed of myself.

Much more was said, many more stabs were taken at my heart, but I pulled off the road, got out of the car and found a distant ball park, where I sat on the bleachers and stared off into the landscapes of Delaware, trying to make sense of what had just happened with this girl I want to marry.

I don’t know if I’ve ever been more hurt.  Sterling, Christin, and Kimberly and their families and I all adore each other.  We are fellow believers together.  They take care of me, I like spending time with them, and yes Christin crushed on me for a while, but nothing ever happened.  I took her to her prom and I didn’t even kiss her.  The whole reason I didn’t pursue a relationship with her was because she was too young.  I sat there alone for a long time, and eventually heard from the Lord that Marie’s accusations were false.

So, I returned to the car.  By the look on her face, it was clear she knew she was out of line.  She apologized.  We drove home.

I prayed silently as we drove, and God gave me a very clear answer that I love my friends, and the fact that many of them are women is not a sin.  What Marie said to me reveals much more about her heart and mindset than it did mine, and, after spending a week with her family, it’s clear to see that she was raised in such a negative and narrow mindset.  We both got to experience where each of us came from these past two weeks, and the fact that we both came from two different words really broke us.  She felt like she didn’t belong with my group of friends and possibly even felt like she doesn’t have as good of friends as I do, and I felt rejected by (and bored with) her family.

So there it is.  God is breaking us.  Or maybe he’s sharpening us.

Perhaps this will make us a stronger couple than we were before.  Perhaps we won’t be able to recover from this.  Time will tell.

November 8, 1999 – Monday – 11:00 a.m.

Eddie from Lees-McRae is going to be in my movie. He’ll spend the first week of January with me.  So that’s exciting!

I saw Marie on Saturday night.  She is so beautiful!  We talked about relationships and knew we were something, but didn’t know what title to give it.  She said the only relationships God speaks of in his Word are friendships and marriage, so she was hesitant to label us as anything in between.  I don’t think she’s ever had a boyfriend before.

I told Kimberly and Sterling about her, as well as Lindy and Vince.  She is amazing to me.  I feel like a school boy, oh wait, I still am.

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!

September 20, 1999 – Monday -7:20 a.m.

The Lord delivered me from pains of loneliness last night at church.  Years and years of being separated off to the side because I was a little different, or saw the world differently, had really taken its toll.  Growing up, it was truly difficult to share my heart with people.  I was rejected many times.  God set me free from much of the hurt last night.

After church, I went over to Chris and Jason’s and we prayed for each other, went out to eat, and just talked.  They are of my same heart and vision and they are wonderful to talk with.

Kimberly and I went to see For The Love of the Game yesterday afternoon.  It was nice.  And Saturday I did my silent black and white film with Sterling’s family.  Adam and David helped me.  Kimberly even pulled focus a couple of times.  It was a fantastic time!

Thanks to Hurricane Floyd, we haven’t had class since Tuesday of last week.  The Caedmon’s Call concert is Saturday, and I’m going to the Pat Robertson cookout with Joy on Friday night.  Auditions for DANG! are next Tuesday and Wednesday.

It’s time to go to work.  I love you Lord.

September 4, 1999 – Saturday – 9:00 a.m.

Sometimes I begin to write and I see that it has been a few days and I try to recap what I’ve done, but this time it is more important to figure out how I feel or how I got to this new place.  Don’t get me wrong, at this moment I’m in my apartment, on my bed; I haven’t physically gone anywhere, but my heart has.

Recently, I’ve felt torn between my two different work worlds of church and school.  I felt God pushing me towards school and away from church.  This confused me because my traditional way of thinking has always been to get involved in the church first and foremost.  Last year, I just went to school, but was involved with church.  Now God is saying to do the opposite.

I believe Master’s Commission was my last bit of serious youth ministry and youth work. I’m 23 and there’s many valuable years between that and the 16-year-olds I’ve been hanging out with recently.  So, I think I’m going to just teach the class on Wednesdays until David can find someone else, and I’m going to focus on school.  I’m going to completely let the drama team go, and I will not go to that many youth services anymore.  I’ll still hang out with Sterling, Christin, Kimberly, Brandon, and Jason, but I just need to let go of the teenage life.  I’ve been living it for way too long.

What a good thing that youth church has been in my life.  I’m so thankful I shared so many days with them.  It feels good to come to this new stage.  Thank you God.

So, it is Saturday morning.  Kerstin is back from Germany.  I met her at the airport last night.  I’ve got plenty of work ahead of me thanks to my classes and my thesis film.  I’m going to see Caedmon’s Call in three weeks.  I have a backstage pass.

It is a beautifully rainy day thanks to Hurricane Dennis.  It is nice to be in September.

August 19, 1999 – Thursday – 8:00 a.m.

Mary Jo and her guy Rob, plus Stephen, took me out to eat for my birthday.  All the beautiful waitresses sang happy birthday to me.

Lindy called me at midnight to wish me a happy birthday.  And Nate called me as well.  He is in high school now.

I worked at the bookstore all day on Tuesday.  It was the best day!  They had a cake and everything for me.

Sterling’s family had me over for dinner that night and Kimberly came over as well.  We all met up with other folks from the youth group to go pick David up from the airport.  He has been in Bogota.

I met with Lorene since she is going to be the chair for my thesis film I’m doing.  I’ve titled it DANG!.  I have to incorporate my own production company to produce it properly and legally.  I bought a book on how to do that last night.  This is kind of crazy.

I can feel in the air that autumn is on its way.  This 23rd year of my life is going to be something else.  My movie will take up most of it, plus a full year of classes, not to mention teaching at the church on Wednesday nights.  I’ll also be working on a feature length script for my story structure class.  The summer is almost over.

On Monday I have an audition for a CBN/700 Club feature story.  Someone told the director that I look exactly like this real life murderer, so I’ve been asked to read for the part.  Should be fun!