Saturday, February 6, 2010

Our Story - Part IV

Conversations continued after that with mutual interest, they both grew closer as friends; and his subjective interest heightened. She turned his head, and his heart. He bought three Jane Austen novels and purused her favorite, in an attempt to "enter into her world." He was the joke of the campus: M.Div students do not read Jane Austen. Period. But this one did.

Things grew complicated quickly, however, when it became evident to those around her that this man was not just interested in a friendship. She had several friends cautioning her, and even a couple encouraging her to discontinue all conversation with him. In her journal she wrote of a conflict of mind and heart. While logic and reasoning could easily persuade her that they were just friends, and that taking him at his word was what was best for the friendship, the power of her heart and the confidence of trusted friends created quite a quandary. "My heart is telling me, along with outside sources, that he’s more than just interested: he sees a potential relationship and is scoping out his prospect- me. Talk about pressuring; talk about uncomfortable.... I want to just run away from my problems and cry..." But in the end, reason always won. At least it made sense... she couldn't make sense of what she was feeling, so she just ignored it, in hopes it would soon disappear.

Down in Charlotte people thought he was just plain crazy. His pastor and pastor's wife had a good laugh over his pursuit of her, and thought that the trip to see her in September was moving just a little too fast. Some were a little concerned that she was only 18, a home-schooler, so far away, & etc. There seemed to be no end to the conflict.

Yet, somehow he knew she was different. She seemed set apart from all other girls he'd ever been interested in, she seemed unique, unparalleled. And he knew that the heart break he could possibly experience through being rejected could not compare with the joy that would come if she ever was his-- even the joy that he experienced simply in knowing her.

They had a fight late September over the definition of their relationship. Unable to live without some confrontation, she brought up his obvious interest, expressed concern that "just friends" didn't seem enough for him... and nearly crushed his hopes of winning her heart.

She thought she had done right, she had been honest. Everyone told her she needed to be more honest. Why then was there a hole in the pit of her stomach? 

Besides one email they didn’t talk at all for 3 days (O, wow!) but it felt like a month. She prayed he would call on Wednesday, as he normally did, but when 9 o’clock passed without a phone call, she did her best to hold her emotions in check.

However, after thoughtful consideration, and some prayer her honesty (she had flat out told him she could not ever see a future with them as more than friends) did not discourage him at all. He and his best friend set to work on a plan to woo her back into his hands.

(O, Dear Reader, it was dreadfully awful, and he was scolded fiercely months later when he told her what went on, but it worked.)

He waited and waited and waited for the clock to roll past nine. And when finally 9:30 came he called his best friend again, "You sure I shouldn't just wait until tomorrow?"

"No, no. Dan, she'll hate you if you do that. You've gotta call late tonight. She'll be all emotional, and just be glad you even called. If you wait, you'll lose."

So he called forty minutes late and was pleased to hear she nearly burst into tears at the sound of his voice. He pretended to be a little mad (and he truthfully was a little) and after letting her express all she wanted (which was mostly just jumbled apologies for hurting him), then told her rather firmly that if they were going to be just friends he needed her to trust him.

She realized that night that her life would be very different without that man in her life. Somewhere in her heart she was beginning to understand what it felt like to be completed by someone.

                                                                        be continued...

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