In three earlier posts (found below in this blog) I shared about my growing up in Dry Creek.
It’s now 1974 and time for college.
I chose to attend Louisiana College, our state’s only Southern Baptist college. The next five years (I strategically crammed four years of college into five.) were a key time in my life. I found college coursework extremely challenging and enjoyed it. The small student-teacher ratio allowed good interaction with faculty, many of whom took a deep interest in me. I didn’t declare a major for my first three semesters but took my basics and prayerfully considered what God’s will was for my career.
I made many friends through intramural sports, the Baptist Student Union, and dorm and campus life. Being ‘carless’, I didn’t date much but had plenty of friends of both genders.
My parents were extremely supportive of my college attendance but didn’t have the finances to pay my tuition and board. Through working during summers and all holiday breaks plus several scholarships and a student loan, I paid for college.
I declared secondary education as my major and due to the influence of a revered biology professor, sought a science certification as well as physical education. I felt called to teach and coach and have never doubted that assignment for the next stage of my life. I’ve never believed I was the sharpest axe in the shed but always worked hard and was organized. I was very fortunate to make good grades.
My third year of college, my sister joined me at college and our parents bought us an old truck. Later that fall, I became interested in a transfer student named DeAnise “DeDe” Terry. DeDe, like my sister, was a piano major, and I liked how she looked and her sweet smile and winning personality. I tightened up my courage and asked her out. This led to more dates and as they say the rest is history. We continued dating and became more serious over the next three years.
We were able to communicate well, had good sense of humors, and our diverse personalities and interests complemented our relationship. Our relationship had a strong physical dimension but with the help of the Lord and our commitments to purity, we were able to keep ourselves sexually pure. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done but one of the most fulfilling things.
I became president of the Baptist Student Union and this opened many doors of service and leadership at Louisiana College. A new young college president and a great BSU leader made great influences in my life. I began to recognize that I had leadership qualities and others followed me. This didn’t inflate me ego but instead humbled me knowing the responsibilities leaders have.
I graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1979 along with DeDe. We married shortly after and began our teaching careers in a small rural school near where I’d grown up. We moved into an old house where we’d have frozen to death if we hadn’t been so deeply in love.