WAIT ON THE LORD
It had been almost five months since Sandy Storrie had been coming to the library to sit and talk with me almost every day during the week. I didn’t know why he was showing this big interest in me, because he never asked me out. Even on a last minute group date of ten people or more he usually ignored me. When a group of us rode home on the bus from First Baptist Church of New Orleans he kept to himself unless we were singing. One time it was just him and me singing: What a Day That Will Be and The King is Coming!
At the end of the first year of seminary, I planned to get a job in New Orleans. Before I did, my friends, Beverly and Rachel, invited me to go with them to interview for a summer mission program at a church in Monroe, Louisiana. When we arrived we were surprised to see Randy S. and Sandy Storrie there from the seminary. Sandy smiled at me but never said anything, but friendly Randy spoke.
We three girls fell in love with the father-like pastor who oozed with love for Jesus and had an eagerness to reach the youth in his community for Christ. How could I resist hearing his rich heavenly voice every Sunday, and an opportunity to serve the Lord? But, would I be of any worth, if Sandy Storrie was around? I heard he only came to keep Randy company on the trip. I cross my fingers and hoped to die, I'll stick a needle in my eye if I'm not telling the truth that I don't want Sandy to end up in Monroe with us this summer. My silly child-like chant didn’t do any good; Sandy decided to come join us.
After we girls got settled in to our apartment near Monroe Baptist Church, I went downstairs to meet the newly weds who were teaching the Young Adult Sunday School and reaching out to new young adults in the community. The wife was delightful and easy to talk to and she picked up on my uneasiness and she asked me what was wrong.
She said she had the same problem when nothing was working out with her finding the right man to marry. She said if Sandy is the one for you and he’s not ready, I needed to back off and give him space. She said, sometimes you have to secretly chase the guy until he catches you! God wants you to let go of worrying and let Him run your love life even if it means being single for the rest of your life! She told God she was sorry for focusing so much on finding the right guy and letting it become her god.
Sheepishly, I asked her how she became a newly wed. She chuckled and said it wasn't easy. But, as soon as she gave God her love life and left any future husband up to Him, her husband, eventually, appeared when she wasn't looking. She said the same thing will probably happen to me but don’t worry about it or try to make it happen…just let go and let God!
That night as I lay my head on my tear soaked pillow, I let go of Sandy. Whether he was or wasn’t the one for me I had to let him and marriage go and be willing to stay single if that’s what God wanted for me. Those were the hardest words for me to pray! Afterwards, I felt at peace and I slept like a baby.
The six of us were knee deep in Vacation Bible Schools and Youth Outreach and we didn’t notice that the summer was flying by. I was surprised that I hardly noticed when Sandy was around. I chuckled inside as I realized my new growing confidence was putting a puzzled look on the face of Mr. Blonde Haired Sandy with Blue Eyes. If I was supposed to be single, I was learning how to enjoy it!
At the end of the summer back at seminary a strange phenomenon came on. Different guys started asking me out and I couldn’t understand what was going on! What was God doing? Was he testing me? Should I turn them down? Since, I wasn’t really interested in the guys, I accepted just to have something to do.
Dennis seemed like a harmless, nice guy when he appeared out of nowhere one day on campus and asked me out. I said I would have to think about it because I wasn’t dating since I told God I would stay single if that was His will. Dennis looked at me with a cute grin and said, " I'm not asking you to marry me...yet, so I’ll just call you Friday for your answer on our date, if that's okay."
I accepted the Saturday date when Dennis called and I apologized for my over informative response. He just laughed. When we were driving out of the seminary he started telling me some personal stuff...that he had been a successful pastor of his own church for five years; he owned his house and car; and all he needed now was to find a wife! He chuckled about the last part, so I pretended to hug the door and I said, "You better not be taking me to the Chapel of Love!"
When The God Father movie was finally over I woke up to the long credits going by on the screen. The bloody sight of the race horse's head in the bed was still making me sick. I couldn’t wait to get back to the dorm and throw up in the toilet.
I had kept my distance so Dennis wouldn’t feel obligated to hold my hand or put his arm around me. Not that he wanted to because he seemed perfectly happy to be by himself. He was polite enough, slim and trim, and he dressed nicely, but his balding head and bad breath were screaming, "he's trying to rob the cradle!"When I turned down our going to The Café DuMonde after the movie, Dennis seemed tired and relieved.
When he pulled up in front of my dorm, I thanked him for the evening and I insisted he didn’t have to walk me to the door. Before he got out on his side, I jumped out of the car, waved goodnight and practically ran in to the dorm. I was so afraid he was going to ask me out again and I didn’t know how to turn him down. My guilty heart pounded hard in my throat as I leaned against the door that had closed behind me. I let out a very, long sigh of relief. I blinked my eyes and realized they had stopped watering, but my clothes smelled like a smoke stack.
I sat next to cutie pie, Larry, in the Young Adult Ministry class the first semester of my second year at seminary. I got to know this mysterious, handsome guy a little better. He was a fun-flirt at the girl’s dorm and he seemed a little interested in me. I didn’t take him serious though, because I had a feeling he was gay. I didn't know a thing about homosexuals. All I knew was they wore green... or didn't wear green, on Thursdays in high school. Oh, well!
When he asked me out one day after class, I tried to hide my surprise. Maybe, he was trying to test his true sexuality and he thought I could help him? It was more like he was trying to intimidate me for fun! He said he wanted to show me around New Orleans, so I accepted.
Larry didn’t own a car so we took the bus first and later ended up in a street car. He showed me much of New Orleans I had already seen and some I had not seen. He was surprised I had already been down on Bourbon Street several times and had been to lots of other places he pointed out. Maybe, he thought seminary girls sat in their dorm room all weekend.
Evidently, he didn’t know that we girls and guys would jump into two or three cars at a moment's notice and head for a late night snack at Bud’s Broiler or the Dirty Donut Shop! Larry's disappointment that I had already seen almost everything made me feel like I had to still act excited. As if he was annoyed with my act, he pulled on the street car rope to alert the conductor he wanted to get off. He grabbed my hand and we exited into a lower, middle class residential area.
He dragged me along Canal Street as if in a hurry, mumbling something about introducing me to somebody who was not really expecting us. When we stopped in front of a small, A-frame house, near the sidewalk, I said, “Who isn't expecting us?”
“They're good friends,” Larry said, “don't worry, they won’t mind us dropping in unexpected! We won’t stay long! I want to show you off, anyway!”he said with a persnickety grin.
The surprised look on my face from Larry's sweet compliment matched the surprised look on the guy’s face that opened the door. He said he wasn’t expecting us! (or he wasn't expecting Larry with a girl if you know what I mean?)With a forced smile he motioned for us to come in. We followed him in and stopped short of the kitchen counter where he was preparing dinner. I looked around at the small house that was one big room with an open, bedroom in the loft.
“We were in the neighborhood and I decided to drop by,” Larry said, so sue me! Something smells delicious!”
“Home made lasagna!” the cook said.
“Brody, this is Kathy!” Larry finally introduced me. “ Kathy, this is Brody and up in the loft is his boyfriend, Clark.”
I nodded at Brody and waved at Clark who was grinning like a Cheshire cat at my deer-in-the-headlight face. You could cut the air with the knife Brody was using to cut up the salad makings. Nobody invited us to sit down, let alone eat.
We stayed less than five minutes because the "chit-chat" ran low and the food for two was getting cold. The unfriendly situation added fire to Larry’s already, bad mood as we left and rode the bus back to campus in silence.
"I guess your two friends didn’t approve of me being with you. You know what we should have done, Larry?"
"We should have asked to stay to eat, then made out on the sofa. Larry laughed about my suggestion all the way home and I told him I didn't think it was that funny.
Richard had a muscular, stocky build and he was very handsome. I could tell he knew what he wanted in life and he wouldn’t stop until he got it. I didn’t think that included me, so I went out with him to see what he was all about. He told me we were going to a local university where we had permission to witness to the students on campus.
Richard handed me a stack of small, four-square gospel tracts before he disappeared. For two hours the Lord helped me hand out tracts and witness to strangers who were very nice and receptive. The B.S.U. back in college had prepared me to know how to do this. I approached people who were sitting alone reading or studying. A few of them listened to the gospel and accepted Jesus Christ into their hearts or they took the tract to read later.
Richard returned and said it was time to go back. He seemed pleased with me but still acted business-like and very focused on his agenda. He never asked me out on a real date but I think he used the witnessing adventure to see how I fared as a potential pastor’s wife. A month later he verbalized his intentions toward me after we came back from witnessing one Saturday.
“Kathy, I like you very much but you need to know something. I should have told you this sooner but I needed more time to know my true feelings. Even though I do have a special feeling for you, I cannot ask you out on a real date. The reason being is that I believe I am still in love with a girl back home. We wanted to use this separation time to see if we still had the same feelings. I had no idea I would meet someone like you here and I don’t want to lead you on any further in case you are starting to have feelings for me. I know now my feelings are still strong for her but she may not want me back but I have to go home and find out. I wanted you to know and I didn’t want to hurt you,” Richard said.
All I could say to him was thank you for being honest and that she was a lucky girl and that if it didn’t work out, he knew where to find me if he needed help giving out gospel tracts.
He never came back but that was okay by me because my feelings for Sandy Storrie were much stronger than any feelings I had for Richard. If God decided to let me get married I still voted for Sandy for now. Meanwhile, I would enjoy being single and wait on the Lord!
Psalm 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
Anything worth having, I have had to wait for, my whole life! The good stuff is hardly ever dumped in my lap! I have to wait, pray, sweat, wait, bleed, wait, cry, and pray some more before I get the big one. But, when it comes it is always so precious and worth all the pain and struggle.
"Wait on the Lord" is my motto in life and it is the only way for me.