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Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Love Story, Part 5

That was a long and confusing spring. As I look back over the pages of my journal, I can see the conflict in my heart:

"I tried, but I couldn't quite banish the lonely feeling that's seemed to hang on me all week. Oh, how I wish life could be what it was before any of this foolishness creeped in!"

"[when Sky gets back] I pray to God that he won't notice a difference in my attitude towards him. I would almost rather die than for him to suspect what's in my heart. The Lord has definitely been helping me to lean on Him during this time. I'm not mad at myself anymore, just wondering why it would take something like this for me to learn to 'lean not on my own understanding'".

"Sometimes I miss him so much that a dull ache seems to settle on my heart that just won't go away. I just don't feel like myself. It's not that I'm not cheerful or joyful; it's just that, behind my cheerfulness seems to be this sadness that I can push out of the way but can't quite get rid of. I just wish...I could go back to being myself again. And yet, something tells me that it won't ever be the same again. Growing up is so confusing."

You see, I just knew that I had let my guard down and dishonored God and my parents by falling in love. I wanted it to go away, and everything to go back to how it was. Life was getting too complicated for my 17-yr-old heart to handle.

I didn't need to worry about missing Sky that spring. It seemed he came up with an excuse to drive the 1600 miles home about every 6 weeks or so. Which made everything even more confusing. I loved seeing him, and hated myself for loving it. Part of me wanted him to stay away and part of me couldn't bear the thought.

Meanwhile, I was enjoying life. I had other friends and we were busy just surviving. There was a bit of competition starting between Sky and his best friend, Jesse, and it amused me. I'd never been fought over before. I admit it was flattering. I laugh as I read these words from a journal entry:

"[while hiking with a group of friends during one of Sky's visits] I seemed to aquire a whole bunch of wildflowers that I didn't pick. I think Sky was making up for Sunday when Jesse gave me a whole bouquet of tulips. Boys are soooooo strange! I wonder if it ever crosses their minds that we girls know exactly what they're doing and why?"

Sky finally got a phone so we were able to talk to each other every weekend. I'm still surprised my parents let me, but I think they were afraid to make a big deal about it. We were good friends, so there was nothing unsual about wanting to talk on the phone. We managed to say a lot without saying anything.

Around June of that year, I came to a place where I couldn't take it any more. I was so tired of fighting what I thought was my flesh; tired of thinking I was displeasing God by my attraction to Sky. One day, home alone, I sat on my bed and cried out for God to take away my love for Sky. I begged Him, over and over, please, God, take it away. As I cried, tears falling on my bed, I felt God's presence wash over me. Then, with a voice so clear it startled me, I heard Him say "Child, do not fight Me. This love you feel in your heart is not of your own doing...it is from Me. I have a plan for you, and you must stop fighting against it. To fight this love, is to fight Me. Rest, and let Me guide your life." Instantly peace flooded my soul, and the striving ceased. I suddenly stopped floundering and felt solid ground under my feet for the first time in months. Yet I was afraid I was only hearing what I wanted to hear, so I asked Him again. Again, He gave me the same answer.

He then brought to mind a dream I had had several times when I was about 14. In my dream, I was at my wedding rehersal. Surrounded by my brothers and sisters, cousins, aunts and uncles, we were practicing for my wedding. When I walked up the aisle, I looked up into the face of my groom. I saw a man I had never met before, and his face was seared into my memory just before I woke up. It was in that moment of recalling my dream, that goose-bumps suddenly covered my entire body. The face in my dream had the bluest eyes I had ever seen. That face belonged to Sky.

I had no idea where to go from there, I only knew I was in God's will and that was enough for me. I was scared about what my parents would say, scared of what this would mean for the next few months of my life, scared of territory I knew nothing about. But this I did know: if God was for me, who could be against me? A verse that had always been my favorite suddenly popped into my head: "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they run and not grow weary, they shall walk and not faint."

I've often believed, looking back, that God made His answer to me so sure and certain because I would need it so desparately in the battle to come.

Part 6


  1. Your certainty about sky and that you knew you were going to marry him is amazing. I am enjoying your love story thus far.....

  2. I don't know if you'll see this...but I'm wondering why you didn't talk to your parents about your feelings and your confusion? Maybe this is where parents lose it..in wanting the very best for their children and trying to safeguard them...we forget to be approachable?
    My daughter recently married, it was a beautiful courtship and wedding. I can't imagine if she'd never come to me and talked to me about the guys she liked or thought were cute/nice/steady/godly/jerks etc during her teen years. Those are some of the most precious memories I have with her.

    I still think courtship is the way to go...but reading your story thus far has made me decide to be ever conscience of making sure my children know I'm approachable and that I will listen to them. It is sad that during one of the most special times in your life you felt cut off from communication with your mom and dad.

  3. It is sad and that's a good question. As I think about what went wrong and what to do with my own kids, I think I'm understanding a little more. I think the answer has many facets to it.

    It started when I was very little. I remember every time I tried to share my heart, or how I was feeling with my mom, I was told not to feel that way, or brushed off, or that I needed to "examine your heart" to make sure there wasn't any sin or rebellion. After enough times of this happening, I eventually quit trying. The last time I tried this, I was 12 years old. I was looking at pics of American landmarks in the living room and Mom was reading a book. I stated that I really wanted to visit the Bad-lands because there was something wild and untamed about their beauty. My mom looked at me for a second and said "Well, you need to examine your heart and make sure there isn't something rebellious there". I distinctly remember thinking: I will never try to share my heart with you again. Right or wrong, that's what I did.

    So fast forward to being a teen-almost-adult, and going through some real heart issues, struggling to work through stuff, there was no way I could tell them. I just knew they'd be mad, then they'd accuse me of all manner of wrong, and tell me to dismiss the feelings and not talk to Sky again. (Which is exactly what happened when I DID tell them a year later.) There was no talking about it. No discussion. Just lectures. And teen isn't going to completely shut down when lectured at? When their heart and real feelings are dismissed or critisized?

    I think, as a mom, that if you desire the privilege of friend and guide to your teens, then you need to earn that place when they're very small. I'm so glad you had this with your daughter. My heart still wrings when I see beautiful mother-daughter relationships. My sisters and I often said that we were jealous of other girls who could talk to and were friends with their moms. It breaks my heart to think that my relationship with my own daughters could fall short of that. But I firmly believe that it's MY job to cultivate that relationship RIGHT NOW, while they're little. To be the kind of mother that my kids want to be friends with. I do not believe it is my right to guide my teen's lives. It is a privilege that I must earn and must be granted by teens who trust me with their heart because I showed when they were small children that I was safe and could be trusted.

    My mom was great in other ways: she was an awesome teacher, for example. She's a great friend to other moms, and always willing to help someone in need. But heart-issues were definitely not her strong-point.