I havenít talked at all about a love life so far. Thought I might mention it here. I told you that I went off to college at age Twenty-one. I also told you God showed me through Edgar what he wanted me to do with my life as a career. I was a good student in high school. I never opened a book and made the four year Honor Society while partying my way through my high school days. I also took the college entrance exams and finished in the top twenty percent in the country. I received about fifteen scholarship offers and denied them all to keep working in fast food joints. Did I say joints? I still canít hear that word without thinking about how stupid I was in high school; smoking dope and turning down scholarships. What an idiot! I knew it all though; I didnít need anyone to tell me what I should do. I guess things havenít changed all that much. Iím still an idiot!
But Iím a saved idiot! Saved by grace and covered by his blood. Thank God for that or I wouldnít have a chance inÖ well, you know where! That is where I was headed for, but for the saving grace of God. Well, the idiot must go on with the journey. I told you, rambling is a wonderful thing. Now I had to try to go to college with no money, no scholarships, and evidently no brains. Thank God He provides for idiots like me; otherwise we idiots would be in a lot of trouble. My mother started receiving oil checks from royalties her dad had kept on land that he sold in Oklahoma and Texas. What a smart man he was. I wish I was that smart! Why couldnít I have inherited that gene. Oh yea! I was adopted; I almost forgot. Guess when the oil checks stopped coming? They stopped a few weeks after I completed college. He is something isnít He? What was that I said about ďat just the right timeĒ?
I studied Social Work in College with a minor in Christian Studies. I had to work full-time at a Childrenís Shelter the whole four years. I worked mostly midnight to eight AM in the morning five nights a week. That made it very hard for me to make it to class every day. I made it most of the time; at least enough to graduate. I could not wait to get out of there. I hated school. I started when I was twenty-one and when I finished, I was twenty-five. I lived off-campus. My life was not centered around college life. I went to class and played in the intramural sports; otherwise I was not on campus.
Wait a minute; I am supposed to be telling you about my sordid love affairs all over campus. No, there was none of that. I had you for a minute though didnít I. You thought this book was going to get real interesting didnít you! I went to college having dated a very wonderful girl. I donít remember how long. I think it was about a year before I went off to college. I kept on dating her through about the first year of school; I think! My memory on how long escapes me. You would have to ask her. Oh yea! You donít know her. Evidently, I didnít know her either.
I came home as often as I could on the weekends and we met in a little state park half-way between the two cities. I have never loved anyone more than I loved her. I remember one night I was thinking about her. I was thinking that I could not imagine spending my life with anyone else. I decided at that moment that I would pop the question to her! You know; propose. I called her and set up a date to meet her at this state park in a pavilion by the springs with water flowing in the background and the woods right behind us. The birds were singing and the sun was shining. It was the perfect day for a proposal; I thought! All the way there, I was sweating like a pig. Do pigs sweat? I donít know if they do, but they had nothing on me. I never sweat so much in all my life. I can remember thinking; she will probably turn me down because I sweat so much. I figured she would say something like ĒI canít marry someone who sweats so much; what would people thinkĒ. This girl had a voice so beautiful. When she sang, it sounded like angels to me.
Anyway; when I got there, I could tell she knew what I was going to do. We went into the pavilion and I sat her down and told her I had something to ask her. I got down on one knee like you are supposed to do and I asked her to marry me. She said ďNO! You didnít ask me in the right wayĒ. She also told me our pastor in our home town and a close friend of her family that went to church with us, told her that I would not be a good husband for her. I asked her what she meant by ďI didnít ask her in the right wayĒ. She would not tell me. I was in shock! I never dreamed the answer would be no. I never even considered it. I always thought it was, well, understood that was what we would do. I got another shock later. She soon married someone else soon after that day. It seems to me it was about two or three months later. I donít remember for sure, but I do remember it was way too soon.
That meant she had been seeing someone else at home why I was in college. I could not believe it. I later went to my pastor and asked him why he told her that I was not right for her. He never gave me a straight answer. She did say too she felt my kids that I worked with would always come first. Maybe that was what they were talking about. It is funny because she quit her job later and, she and her husband now work in a childrenís home as house parents. Go figure! It took me a long time to get over her. I didnít date for about four years outside of a few friend dates here and there. My heart was broken. I just always knew we would spend the rest of our days together.
This event devastated me. I already had expectations. There is that word again! I expected we would marry, adopt a bunch of kids, and live happily ever after. I truly loved her. I just knew she was the one God had chosen for me. Was I thinking too much about my dream to adopt? Was she right that my kids would always come before her? I donít think so, but I believe God still had a plan. I wasnít sure what it was and I knew one thing for sure. My plans of marrying the girl I loved and pursuing my dream together wasnít going to happen. Maybe that was it! Maybe that was not her goal as well. I donít know. We talked about it. I thought we had the same goals. Obviously we did not. Here is a poem I wrote with her in mind after I started writing so many years later. I do hope she reads it. Iím sure she would have a much different version to the story. I will always remember her though as my first true love. The first one I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Well, here it is!
My beloved, compared to other women
You are like a lily among thorns.
I am overcome by one glance of your eyes.
You are my treasure; you are my bride.
You are like a spring that no one else can drink from.
A fountain of my own.
Look away for your eyes overcome me.
Given every choice under heaven,
I would still choose you.
You are my perfect one.
Your eyes are like the sparkling pools.
They blind me with their gaze.
Oh how delightful you are.
Oh how beautiful you are.
Your lips are like a ribbon of scarlet.
You have ravished my heart.
How sweet is your love.
Honey and cream are under your tongue.
Your voice is so pleasant.
I hear angels when you speak.
Hearing its sound defies all expression.
How soft and inviting is its tone.
Itís like a soothing melody to my soul.
It plays softly in my ear and haunts my mind.
By my love forever you will be.
Love me by the shores of eternity.
Promise me your love will never leave.
Such beauty must be shared.
Come share it with me.
No one compares to my beloved.
I finished college and spent my time serving in a small church teaching Sunday School class for fifth and sixth grade boys, running the churches Royal Ambassador program (a mission organization for boys in Southern Baptist Churches), being an assistant deacon, president of the choir, singing, and leading a singing group of adults called ďThe SeekersĒ. I spent most of my time serving in my church. When I first started there, we averaged about thirty people. We grew to average over one-hundred and fifty in Sunday School on Sundays. It was quite an experience to watch God work. I then watched the church split, run off the pastor and the numbers dwindle again. But I get ahead of myself a bit here.
I graduated from college in í85. I bet you cannot guess where I went to work right out of college; the Oklahoma Department of Human Services. I did my internship in Child welfare and went on to work in Food Stamps and the Aid to Families with Dependent Childrenís departments for five years. I bought a house; five and one-half beautiful acres out in the country and had a pretty good life. While at DHS, I met a lady with a five year old little girl. I thought she was heavenly. She was quiet, gentle, loving, and Catholic. I only mention Catholic because that would be the thing that came between us.
I donít have anything against Catholics. It didnít bother me in the least. We dated for about a year or so. She had just come out of an abusive relationship and we spent every day together. She was a wonderful mother and one of the kindest, gentlest human beings I had ever met. She started going to church with me; she and her little girl. We had a revival once and I got the flu and could not go. The music minister stayed with me. He came home after one night of the revival all excited saying she had been saved that night of the revival. I was thrilled. Everything seemed to moving along. I felt like I might be asking her to marry me soon. I should have known something would happen; my expectations again! The fines arenít working and where is that ghost writer. He is never available when I need him. Ghosts! They do haunt a soul; donít they? I would learn about ghosts later on. I wrote about them; in fact. I wrote a poem/narrative called ďMy Ghosts Are RealĒ. Youíll read it later. I know! Iím rambling again. Lets get back to my sordid love affairs.
Soon after that she confided in me that her mother had a problem with her dating a Southern Baptist. She told me her little girl went to her home one Sunday afternoon and told her mother that she went to school and how much she liked it. Her mother asked the little girl where she would go to school on a Sunday. When her mother found out it was at a Baptist Church, she sold her car so she couldnít come and see me anymore. Looking back at it, I think one of the reasons I liked this girl so much was because she was a lot like my mother. Where was Freud when you need him.
She was very, not able to stand up for herself. I didnít know what to do or say, but it was becoming a big problem. She would stay upset and I didnít know what to tell her to do. She let people hurt her, like my mother did, and never said a word. Over time, it really began to bother me. I donít know if I did the right thing or not. I wonder even now! I one day I decided to tell her she had to make a choice; that if we got married, her mother would probably come around. She couldnít go against her motherís wishes. I never saw her again. I never dated seriously again; even to this day. Iíve had some dates here and there, but nothing that turned into anything more than a few dates. I was done with that. Between my childhood experiences and these two disappointments; I didnít think I would ever try again. I wrote this poem many years later. I had her in mind.
The Way You Smile
Iím always thinking of you.
The way you move,
The way you laugh,
And the way you cry.
I canít conceive a life without you.
I canít see a life with you not there.
You are always on my mind,
You will always be in my heart.
I think of how you hold me,
I think of your soft touch,
I think of how you lay next to me,
How could I turn and not find you there.
But what I think of most of all,
Is the way you smile.
And how empty Iíd feel,
If your smile was not there.
Now that my journey to repentance is complete; I thought that I might be ready to find true love. I am afraid, though, it could be yet another consequence of my sin. My body is about gone physically. It is wrought with Neuropathy that began in ď93. It didnít keep me from doing much until the last five months or so. Walking is a battle, doing household chores is a struggle, and I do good just to take care of me and my mother; and my two dogs. When introducing my romance poetry, I say ďnow I can only write about itĒ. I have my mother, my Ladybug, Boomer (the white Maltese) my little Angel, and my Heavenly Father. He tells me that He is all that I need. I depend on Him to supply my every need. I now want only what He wants.
I Need Only You
I donít need riches or even fame
I donít need power to build my name
I donít need religion; it wonít feel the void
I donít need this world; it seeks to destroy
I donít care if I struggle too much
I donít care about a physical touch
I donít care if I suffer for your sake
I donít care who says You are a fake
This world is not for me
No glory here that I can see
The price they ask is way too high
The words they speak are filled with lies
I need you to write my name
I need you to take my blame
I need you to forgive and forget
I need you to wipe away my regret
I need you; only you
I need you to come back soon
I need you who emptied the tomb
I need you to prepare my gift a room
I need only you Jesus
I need only you
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW
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