rick & 1j13
Saturday, May 31, 2003
Me, Part 2 (Part 1 - Part 3):

In our church, when you left the youth group (graduated from high school), you were then "promoted" to the college/career class. This was a group of folks in college, or who didn't go the college route and were working, who were also unmarried. There really wasn't a "singles" class much, so there was no real age limit here. It felt like a gathering of folks too old for youth group and too unmarried for the couples' classes. On top of that, many of the folks I'd grown up with in this super-dooper youth group went their own ways once they got out of school and their parents' homes. It was amazing - very few of us were still there once we were "free" to go. I know that many went out of town to college, but whatever ties I thought we had were gone with the arrival of diplomas. So where I'd learned the value of friendship in the youth group, I now learned that the tightest bonds might still be pretty loosely tied.

I stayed in town for college, living at home to save money and going on a scholarship. I worked at WQXL, a local christian radio station - still the best job I've ever had. I also worked at the SC State Tax Commission. I guess those were my two biggest/longest jobs in college. And it's funny there, too - I worked a "sacred" and a "secular" job then, just like I am now, and I was given opportunity to be with real people in real situations, not kept in a churchy background with only christians or in a "heathen" atmosphere with mostly un-churched folks. Still doing that today, too - associate pastor at a local church, and full-time weekly job as a programmer/consultant. This is big for me, not having to be dualistic and keeping both sides in play as we grow as christians.

As I mentioned earlier, I broke up with my girlfriend since high school after my sophomore year of college. I really hadn't dated anyone else, and I'd basically been jealous of her time in school: she was a music major, always having to hang out with chorus friends and rehearsals and stuff, while I spent most of my time as a loner computer science geek in the labs. That following summer, I was still at the radio station, so that kept me busy with weekends and afternoon drive time, and I dated a few times - but nothing clicked. When school started back for the fall semester, I got involved at the Baptist Student Union. At the same time, we had begun a weekly college/career bible study time at church. Between school and church, I was too busy to get involved with anyone and didn't really worry about getting into the dating mode again. But that's also when I met Vicki, my future wife - working on the JUMBLE and the Crosswords in The State newspaper in the student center every afternoon. I found myself spending alot more time on campus than I had previously, and this was probably the first time I felt that I could pull away from "home bonds" and develop my own circle/community of friends & faith.

Back after lunch.
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