Although I don’t remember seeing T on the day of the ensemble tryouts, I did begin to observe him over the next several months, but I kept my distance because I was already in a relationship with a nice guy “back home” (about 150 miles away from my college). The members of the music group spent a lot of time together practicing, setting up and tearing down equipment, traveling, performing, going out after our Sunday night concerts, and just hanging out together in the dorms or cafeteria. (By the way, I was a singer in the group and T was the sound man.)
During that time, T and I never had a private conversation that I can remember, but within the context of the group, I developed strong feelings of respect and admiration for him. And I just plain really liked being around him, so much so that I started to wonder if I would be more compatible with someone like T than with the man I was currently dating. When those thoughts started coming, I no longer had a peace about that relationship and knew I needed to end it. I broke it off when I went home for Christmas break. I felt horrible about breaking up with him right before Christmas, but I knew it wouldn’t be right to make any more memories together when the relationship was already over in my mind. I prayed a lot that God would give me the right words to say, and He did–our “parting of the ways” went smoothly, and we walked away amiably. I also prayed that God would bless him with a loving wife someday, and He has–he is now happily married to a sweet woman.
At church the following Sunday, a very dear, wise, elderly lady told me something that her mother used to tell her and her siblings: “There is no shame in a broken relationship or even in a broken engagement. There is shame in a broken marriage.” I reflected on her words whenever I wondered if I had done the right thing in exchanging the security of a pretty healthy relationship with a good guy who cared about me, for the possibility that there might be a man who was a better fit.
A breakup is always hard, even if you know it’s for the best. My heart was heavy, and I E-mailed all the other members in the music group to ask them to pray for me. This was just a natural thing to do, as we were all very close and regularly shared personal prayer requests with each other, however, I think my motives in sending out that E-mail were about 60% that I really wanted my friends to pray for me and 40% that I wanted T to know I was available. Or maybe flip-flop those percentages. (What, you’ve never passed on pertinent information under the guise of a prayer request?)
To be continued…
Go to Part 3.