November 21, 1997 – Friday – 3:40 p.m.

Wow!! The Misanthrope opened and I received tons of flowers!  I got some from Lindy, Ann-Marie, and Abigail.  The show went great and everyone said I did great.

Four more shows remain.  I’m finally enjoying this play.  My mom comes on Saturday.

I finally got my Regent application in the mail.  Life is exciting.  Five and a half months left.  I’m looking forward to the change.  This will actually be somewhat easy, since I know Jesus is already preparing a place for me.

A couple of nights ago, when the moon was nearly full and the ground was covered in snow, Allen, Justin, Ashley, Shannon, and myself drove up to the top of Beech Mountain and sang praises to our Lord.  The midnight silhouette of the mountains below took my breath away.

It was perfect.

As is all of life these days.

Whatever happened to those feelings I had for Jessica, or Sherlive, or even Abigail?  I still see them, I still talk to them, I still even touch Abigail’s face, but it truly feels as if my emotions have moved on.

I love all the girls here, but there is not one of them I have come across whom I truly feel I want to spend my entire life with in marriage.  Just last night I went to spend time with all the girls after the show: Lindy, Tracey, Jeni, Abigail, and Ann-Marie.  Lindy, I believe, is content with her singleness, but the other four dream of love and a Godly man.  I can see their pain and longing in their eyes as they wait for that moment to come.  They almost seem desperate and hopeless.

I wish I could make them all happy forever, but I can’t.

So my job is to simply love all my friends, both guys and girls, for the next five and a half months, and then give each of them an extended “see you tomorrow.”

I feel God sending me to Regent.  He’s sending me to the beach.  Where I will continue to rest in this peace, love, and strength.

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November 17, 1997 – Monday – 1:00 a.m.

Most of my time has gone towards The Misanthrope and therefore I’ve spent a lot of time with Lindy.  I’m so glad we worked together in the box office this summer.  We know so much about each other.  I have so much fun when I’m with her.  We’ve gotten closer as well.  I play with her hair and tickle her back.  We study lines together on my bed and it’s nice.  Thanks God.

Jeni is here and we’ve had a good talk.  I’ve learned that God is using Tracey, Jeni, Abigail, and Ann-Marie to teach me to be a good husband.  Since I’ve grown up with so many girls as friends, I have insight like no other guy.  I’m very thankful for that.

After church today, I ate lunch over at Crystal and Clifton’s and watched Superman.  Whew, I haven’t seen that one in a while.

It’s already been three months since I turned 21.

It doesn’t slow down, does it.

November 13, 1997 – Thursday – 12:30 p.m.

Life has been hectic.  All I’ve been doing is trying to memorize my lines for The Misanthrope.  Lindy and I have been working together a lot.  We’ve gotten closer.  She is so funny and wonderful.

Last night, after our stressful rehearsal, I went and laid down in Tracey’s room.  The girls, knowing how stressed I was, comforted me.  Tracey gave me a massage, Ann-Marie played with my hair, and Abigail tickled my back and neck.  The female touch of a good friend sure is good medicine.  I later ran my fingers up and down Abigail’s arm.  She has the softest skin.

Jeni was there too.  She came to visit for a while.  No one was touching her though.

And Vince was there as well, next to Ann-Marie.

Oh man, I’m going to miss this place.

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

September 29, 1997 – Monday – 1:30 p.m.

A lovely day.

Yesterday was rainy, but still wonderful.  I think I prefer rain over sunshine, especially in the mountains.

Jeni came over and we talked.  Dan and Allen were here and we began talking about relationships.  Then Jeni said to Dan, as though I wasn’t there, “I could never see myself dating Jacob again, mainly because his spiritual relationship with God is so much further along than mine.”

That statement surprised me greatly.  After Dan and Allen left, Jeni and I talked about it.  She said that Abigail and Tracey feel the same way; I somehow make them feel inferior.  “But I don’t do anything!” I told Jeni.  “I’m just me, I don’t think or even try to act like I’m better.  In fact, I’m the lowest of the low.”

She said that maybe it was just their own spiritual insecurity.  She said it was the hardest thing in the world for each of them since they all love me so much.

I didn’t understand.  They love me, but don’t want to pursue anything further with me because I make them feel less close to God?

Then Jeni confessed that over the summer when she stayed with me, she went into my room and read my journal.  She immediately started crying, fearing I would hate her.  She said she opened it up to May 7th, 1997, I believe.  And well, you should flip back and read it for this to make sense, but she said that reading that nearly killed her and she wished she had never read it.

I explained what that entry meant to me and I forgave her.

Then she told me that she told Abigail once, “No matter who Jacob marries, she will never be worthy enough.  He is wonderful.”

There it is.  Because I love God, girls are turned away.  I guess following Jesus does cost something.

But all that was yesterday and I woke up today with a smile on my face.

Speaking of girls, Sherlive is completely confused and foggy about life.  She is asking questions that shouldn’t be asked.  I used to think she had it all together, but she is in the ozone.  I spent three hours talking with her last night.  I asked her to lay her head in my lap so I could just pet her hair and pray for her.  She never seemed to relax.

Dan told me later on, “Jacob it’s going to be terrible next year.”

“Why?”

“Who’s going to be here to take care of us?”

September 28, 1997 – Sunday – 1:40 a.m.

I’m in my room again.  The drives to Louisville and back were as much fun as any time we spent there.

I have grown accustomed to my new apartment.  It is now my place, my room, but I couldn’t call it my home.  Lees-McRae is my home, and this is simply my room.

After I got back from Kentucky, I went down to Cannon lobby and discovered that a lot of people were down there singing praises to our God!  Abigail had some friends up and Tracey’s family was there.  I joined in and it was a wonderful time of song.  Abigail’s face was a huge and constant smile.  I could see in her eyes how special those two people were to her.  She was amazingly happy and that happiness had nothing to do with me.  That’s probably how it will always be and how it should always be.

Jeni is going to Banner Elk Christian Fellowship tomorrow.  She is excited about seeing David, I think something nice happened between them while I was gone.

I saw an unbelievable Kentucky sunset a few hours ago.  It really was an amazing drive home.  Dr. and Mrs. Martin told Charlie and I the story of how they met, it was just a couple of days into their Freshmen year of college.

I was reading a little bit out of my older Books of Days.  I read about Jenna and Tenielle and about lost keys and alphabets.  How crazy and different I seemed back them.  But that was me then and it isn’t me now.

It made me realize that very soon all of these girls here at Lees-McRae will simply be stories in My Book of Days.  But they haven’t completely faded from my heart into the pages of my journal just yet.  I still remember Jeni’s long, soft legs and the curves of Abigail’s face.  I still dream of Jessica’s hair, Ann-Marie’s smile, and Ellen’s laugh.  These girls mean more to me than I ever let them know.

Then there are the new girls like Sarah and Sherlive, whose college experience will continue on without me.  Every night I go to bed so thankful, so thankful for an extra day with these beautiful women and my fantastic guy friends.  They are bringing me closer to God.  God is loving me through them.

Lees-McRae is passing and I know I’ll be able to let it go.  These people here are everything to me.  When we reach the other side, I’m sure one of the first things I’ll do is look for them.

I have been here simply to love

To witness and experience joy and fun

Soon I’ll leave calmly like a dove

The way night does when day is done.

September 22, 1997 – Monday – 7:30 p.m.

Church was great this weekend.  We had an awesome meal on Sunday night.  After church, about 12 people came over to my room.  Justin and Paul played guitar and we had a praise and worship session.  Ann-Marie, Abigail and Tracey were there as well.

Marisa called last night, as did Jeni.  Jeni was sad because Rich Mullins died in a car accident.  She’s coming down on Thursday to see Sounds Across America.

My uncle Jim from California is working in Boone.  He’s going to take me out to eat tomorrow night.

I leave for Kentucky Friday morning.  I’ll spend the weekend there in Louisville.  I’ve never been there before.

Horsemanship was so awesome today.  I rode so fast.  It’s getting darker earlier, the leaves are changing, the air is cool, and my time on that horse every week is simply magical.