Monday, January 05, 2009



For new readers to this site, I am writing since Kristy's battle with a GBM brain tumor and her passing on July 21. Kristy made me a romantic so I write to share christian love stories.


So how does talk on the phone turn into love?

We talked and talked. Life alone at home without anyone around after 8 PM or so is very boring, lonely, and difficult. Now I had someone who understood my hurts and cared. Wanda is a very caring, tender, loving person. She has worked in the same church office for almost 27 years and is loved and respected by everyone because she is a kind, sweet lady. She is a gifted lady and she is a very respected lady.

All of amazing talents and spiritual virtues began to come alive over that phone. I am not one who likes to talk at length over the phone, but things had changed. We got past my shocking announcement about Kristy and even moved forward into talk that definitely was laying ground work for a longer term relationship. 

We prayed at the end of every conversation. I prayed for her family and for healing yet present in Wanda's life over losing Jim five years ago, and she prayed for me, my children, and many other matters in my life. God was in the relationship. Christ had a front row seat. He was leading and guiding in clear and specific ways. 

Weeks pasted with talk and more talk and then one night I mentioned that I would like to see her. Her first response was, "What will your daughters think about this?"

I knew what Jennifer thought because she had already blurted out that Wanda was the one that God had for me, but I didn't tell Wanda even then what Jennifer had said. 

I did say that I knew that Jennifer would be OK with us meeting and I felt that Julie would be OK too. We agreed to talk individually with our children about their feelings about us seeing each other and I told Wanda that I wanted to also talk to my accountability partners about us seeing each other. She said she would talk to her children and we would make our decision on whether we would see each other and when based on the responses from everyone.

In the meantime, we kept talking and talking some more. We found that everyone was in agreement that us seeing each other was OK and we began to talk about how to make that happen. 

Bartow is three and a half hours south of Jacksonville. She has a job. I pastor a church. Where and when and how could we meet. 

A date?

I was going to have a date?

The preacher was going on a date?

I haven't dated anyone but Kristy in 37 years. Wanda hadn't dated anyone but Jim in almost 37 years. How do you go on a date? What do you do on a date? Well, Kristy and I still had dates all of our married lives so I wasn't dead in the water on how to have a date, but now I am dating someone else.

We kept talking and the conversations were getting interesting. We had connected by phone. The phone lines were tied up every night. There was a definite connection going on here. There were feelings of more than "gratitude" or "respect" or "admiration" or what were some of those other words I used to describe our relationship.

The conversations were ending nightly but we growing awkwardness. "Goodbye" or "good night" or "we'll talk later" seemed a little hallow to end the conversations. 

But do I dare tell her that I......, 

that I........, 

that I......, oh it is coming back--that awkwardness. 

How do you tell someone that you love them and it isn't a brotherly or sisterly or general or casual or spiritual or christian or any other word you would like to describe......kind of love.

How do I tell this woman that I love her?

It won't come out of my mouth, but I feel it in my heart. For several nights I could sense that she wanted to say I......, I........, I......., but she was the lady and she wouldn't say it.

She loved me. I could feel it over the phone. 

She wouldn't say it and I couldn't say it. 

I had concrete in my mouth. The syllables wouldn't form. They words wouldn't come out. There was love in the air and love on the phone but the words I love......, I love......., I love.....

Oh, shucks..... The words I love you, Wanda, wouldn't come out of my mouth. They were stuck in concrete. What could I do to free those words? How could I get them out of my mouth?

So, we are talking, and talking, and talking, and praying, and praying, and praying, and saying goodnight, goodbye, see you tomorrow and those words wouldn't come out of my mouth.

Finally, at the end of one of the conversations this dumb preacher got an idea. Preachers preach. That is what we do. I preach. I know I Corinthians 13. I have memorized that chapter years and years ago. I know about love. I have preached about love. I have diagrammed love and explained love and I have counseled about love and so here was my idea. 

I would preach her a sermon.

So I got my best ideas about love together as we ended of one of the conversations and I preached about love.

"Now, Wanda," I said, "Love has many aspects. We love God and we love mankind and we love our children and we love our brothers and sisters in Christ and we know that love is more than an emotion or mere happiness or or joy or the gratification of the flesh. God is love and when He comes into our hearts and fills us with His love then we know how to love......blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, boring, boring, and more and more boring."

"Now, Wanda," (Isn't this lady special. She didn't hang up or go to sleep on my sermon. No I didn't take up an offering, but I should have had a poem.)

"Now, Wanda," I continued, "God has given us the ability to express our love in many ways. More, blah, blah, blah....."

"Now, Wanda, I said, "I......I.....I.....I love.....I love.... I love you." 

I got it out. Finally the concrete had been broken up and I had gotten those words out.

So I waited. 


More silence.

Was she going to preach a sermon to me? Did my sermon put her to sleep and she missed by important closing?

"And I love you...." she sweetly whispered without a poem, offering, or long winded message.

"I love you," she said.


As some of you may have read in the comments sections yesterday, I will be starting another blog in a week or so. This blog will always be here with occasional posts from time to time by family. I have written in Kristy's absence and have written for the last months to tell the story of my new love that Kristy felt God had for me and that God has shown my daughters, me,my family, and  Wanda, and her family. 

Now it is time to move toward other writing as I finish telling the new love story of my life. There will be a link from this blog to my new blog when the change occurs. Thanks for your continued prayers for me, my family, and now for Wanda and me and her family as we follow God's plan and will for our lives. 


At 9:45 AM, Blogger Robin Bayne said...

I love the idea of a new blog linked to this one. Have a wonderful new year.

At 10:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that's an awesome idea, of having a new blog linked to the present blog!

Today I am having to "process", as Wanda put it. The telling her you loved her....I can only imagine the fear of those words.

Your sharing your emotions and awkwardnesses with us is absolutely mind boggling. I'm so appreciative of your attitude toward your blogging friends, with feeling the need and "want-to" in sharing your new found love. If you had not been so free to share, then we could not possibly understand the transition into this new "love" of yours.

I'm so looking forward to hearing and reading more, and being able to see a picture of you and Wanda.
I pray God's blessings upon you and your families in this new year, 2009.


At 2:26 PM, Blogger B. J. Brooks said...

Great Idea Milton. A new Blog is perfect.

May God continue to Bless you and Wanda. I loved your sermon. A very unique approach.

Phone calls and emails are the best for sharing of inner feelings. I met my husband on line and could see from what he wrote to me that he was a very Godly man, sent by God at my request.

Many Blessings
B.J. Brooks

At 5:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

God Bless you both - Milton & Wanda. Father, let their relationship grow and blossom as You would have it do. May they always be led by Your Almighty Hand. In Jesus name.

Lorraine - UK

At 11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Healing is a process of time and wisdom. May you and Wanda heal in time and may wisdom guide you. The heart processes healing much different than any other organ of the body. Therefore, it must be healed by God's Wisdom. Errr you might make a mistake even in doing good. Lord, keep Milton and Wanda safe in their journey of life. Guide them by your Spirit. Amen.

At 1:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We NEED a picture of you and your new love...PLEASE..PLEASE...PLEASE!


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