October 26, 1969
As Nate and I drove back to Champaign from Wilmette, we needed to make a decision about my safety in the apartment. Living alone until we were married had left me vulnerable when several young men had attempted to break in. Nate expressed extreme concern, telling me it was his job to protect me. But neither of us knew how to fix the problem.
He could move in with me, but both of us knew we wouldn’t be able to resist each other physically, especially since we only had one bed – the one that pulled out of a closet. And we both wanted to hold out until we were married (which was already difficult enough). To compromise after we’d come this far seemed like too big a defeat.
As the miles clicked away, we discussed our options:
- Nate could move in with me, and we could try to maintain purity.
- We could continue to live separately and hope no further incidents occurred.
- I could advertise for a roommate on the university bulletin board (for one month).
- We could trust God to protect me.
- I could be more diligent about locking both locks on both doors.
The thought of option #1 brought immediate comfort to both of us. But to do that was to make a decision based on the fear something bad was going to happen. I liked the sound of #4. If I continued to live alone, counting on God to protect me as he already had, we could also count on him protecting our desire to wait for sex till marriage.
I said, “After all, those guys didn’t get in. And I wasn’t hurt.”
“Yes, but you were hurt emotionally.” Nate said. “Both of us were.”
“But, I know God will heal all of that.” I said. “He will.”
“But what if something else happens? And what if God chooses not to step in? I would feel like it was my fault…. again.”
“I guess we have to believe that if that ever happened, he’d walk us through a recovery then, too.”
Besides, it wasn’t just in the apartment that bad things could happen. And it wasn’t just to me. Nate could become a victim, too. There were no guarantees about safety.
When we pulled up to our apartment, we were still hashing it out. After making multiple trips up the stairs with our gift boxes, we finally sat down and looked at each other. The time had come to decide. I felt completely bonded to Nate and knew he would do anything to keep me from suffering in any way. But as I studied his face, I could see he was going to let me make the final decision.
In the end, I opted for a combo of numbers 2, 4, and 5. We would continue living separately, relying on God for protection (wherever we were), and would be more diligent about locking doors.
When Nate finally drove away that night, for the first time I thought it best not to stand in front of the window and wave.
“The Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” (2 Thessalonians 3:3)