Written by Adam McManus
It was late September, 2001. Not only had terrorists taken the lives of 3,000 innocent American citizens on our soil, but I had just lost my job and broken up with my girlfriend. Needless to say, I've had better months.
Despite the support and encouragement of friends and family alike, I felt adrift and alone. My world had been turned upside down. God has a funny way of getting our attention, doesn't He?
I was ready for a change of scenery, a change of pace and some fun. You know what they say: "When you're life seems to be falling apart, you might as well go on a Christian singles retreat!" I think Max Lucado is considering that as a catchy title for his next best-selling book. Although it might be a little wordy.
The Singles' Retreat
I rode up with my friend Scott Coward. He patiently listened to me as I spent the better part of the scenic drive pouring over the many details of why I thought my last relationship hadn't made it to the altar.
For some reason, we had gotten off to a late start. By the time we arrived to the luscious, green and pristine grounds of T Bar M Camp, most people had already finished dinner and were wandering around getting their stuff unloaded from the car in preparation for Todd's first talk that night.
There were still two small clusters of singles in the dining room, eating their last several bites of their meal as they lingered to enjoy good conversation. One of them seemed to beckon me more than the other. They had a greater synergy, a better group dynamic. Frankly, they seemed to be having a better time. Sign me up. That's why I had come.
After getting a burger, fries and a salad at the buffet line, I plopped myself down with the Fun People and promptly introduced myself.
"Hi, I'm Adam."
The first meeting
And what a sense of humor. She almost had David Letterman's keen sense of timing. I ate it up.
They say that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. Not me. The way to my heart is through my funny bone. Make me laugh consistently, and I'll be on the prowl for an engagement ring in a New York minute.
Her name was Amy Holzer.
And, like me, she had her own recent baggage. Just the week before, she had called off her engagement, after a fairly long courtship. Her roommate Amy Gossett convinced her that it made more sense to bask in God's beauty and be with God's people than cry inside her room for the weekend. Sound advice.
Throughout the weekend, the highlight for me was spending time with the two Amys. They were quite a pair.
Gossett had always walked the straight and narrow, had given her heart to the Lord at a tender age and had led Teen Mania teams overseas on short-term missions' trips.
Holzer had rebelled against her Christian upbringing, did her own thing, but came to the end of herself at a Metro meeting where she committed her life to Christ, asking Him to forgive her for her sins.
They were the dynamic duo. Both loved the Lord and loved to laugh.
Throughout the weekend, I couldn't get enough of Amy Holzer. I felt drawn to her like no other woman before. It wasn't a physical attraction at the time, although she's obviously beautiful. It was some kind of personality, soul connection.