Tuesday, September 29th, 2020. 6:58 AM.
The Story of Eileen and Mark
“One Last Request”
Dear Eileen, may I tell you a story?
A Love Story
A True-Love Story
A Living Love Story About Love that begins as a seed that is planted in the heart of a boy; and there it begins to grow by God’s Grace and Love and Spirit and truth and perseverance and faith and hope and charity into Eternal Life by God’s Eternal Love for those who truly believe in Him; and believe the gospel of Jesus Christ our Saviour.
The Greek name, Eileen, means light. And the word light is very important in the Holy Scriptures and in the gospel; in particular, in the gospel named John and in the epistles of John. And Eileen’s dad’s name is John – although his wife called him Jack. And, speaking of the name Jack: there is a noble character named Jack Dawson in a beautiful love story about The Titanic. And there is a beautiful love song in the movie “Titanic.”
My Heart Will Go On I Titanic (Lyrics)
Mark, had been writing to his former grade school classmate of many years ago. Her name was Eileen. They had also dated for three months when they were in their early twenties – 46 years ago. Mark wrote a letter to Eileen when they were in their late 60s. And then, a few months later, Eileen called Mark and left a voice mail message for him. So, a few hours later, Mark mustered the courage to called Eileen; and they had an honest-to-goodness conversation for about a half-hour. Several hours later, Eileen texted mark and invited him to call her again once in a while if he felt like talking. Mark was thrilled to have spoken with Eileen again. And the text message encouraged him very much. So, in his enthusiasm, he texted back to Eileen, just briefly, how he felt about her and their conversation. However, Eileen texted back to mark that he should push her out of his mind and forget about her. Mark was surprised by this sudden change of mind by Eileen. He tried to understand this mysterious change from friendliness to unfriendliness. He wondered if, perhaps, Eileen did not like the letter he had sent her a few months ago. And maybe the gospel tracts he sent to her offended her. Some are offended by the gospel of Christ; in their pride they are insulted by the teaching that we are all sinners under condemnation from God and will go to hell when we die unless we truly believe in Jesus Christ and His redemptive work on our behalf on the Cross of Calvary. Eileen’s phone call did not give a hint that she was offended by Mark’s letter; although, she had in the distant Past told Mark not to send “religious pamphlets” [gospel tracts] to her. He really did not know why she had this very sudden change of heart toward him. He continued to text message her. During the following four months, Mark texted Eileen more than 200 times without receiving a single reply. He really wanted to resume their friendship. His heart was honestly yearning for Eileen. He felt he was in love with her. He could not stop loving her in his heart and mind any more than a mom or dad or husband could stop loving their own child or their beloved wife. Mark wondered if Eileen was afraid to be loved; or was, herself, afraid to fall in love. She did mention a boyfriend during their phone call. Mark did not ask her about that. As Shakespeare wrote:
And speaking of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116, Eileen had lived at 116 Glen Road during her school years at St. Charles School where Mark was in her class beginning in 4th grade in 1961.
Summer of 42 – Music by Michel Legrand
paulo nutini-last request-lyrics
Mark’s Imaginary Scene
One day, there was a knock on Mark’s door. He opened his apartment door and there was Eileen whom he had not seen in decades. She was looking directly into his eyes. He was stunned to see her at his door since she had not written back to him or called him or texted him once since the day of their phone conversation on May 27th – four months ago. She said evenly to him, “May I come in, Mark?” So, Mark let her in with a simple, “Yes,” as he held his door open for her. She walked into his living room and looked around taking in the scene with a momentary sweep of her eyes. “May I sit down, Mark?” “Yes,” Mark replied. Eileen sat down in a comfortable chair in the corner next to a window overlooking the porch on the 8th floor. Sometimes, in the early evening, Mark could see the evening star rising in the darkness of the night sky through that window. Mark sat down in a chair that faced Eileen and that was also facing the porch door to the right of Eileen. The light from the porch door window was shining on Mark as he looked at and listened to Eileen whose name means light. And Mark was reminded by the Holy Spirit of some Scriptures in the Bible and in the gospel of John about Light as his attention was upon Eileen – her appearance and her words and her presence and the emotions that Eileen stirred up in Mark’s heart and soul and mind.
Eileen: “Mark, I am very angry with you. I told you to push me out of your mind and to forget about me; but, you have been texting me almost daily since I called you; and sending letters to me; and even posting long stories about us on your Internet blog. I am livid with you, Mark!” And then she reached into her pocketbook and drew out a revolver. She looked mark right in the eye again and said, “Mark, I am here to shoot you. And right after I shoot you I’m going to shoot myself – and thus put an end to this sick and miserable situation between us that has been going on for much too long. I can’t bear it any longer, Mark!”
Mark: “Eileen, I can understand your irritation with me about this situation. However, I don’t understand why you went from being friendly on the phone and then, suddenly, unfriendly in our text messages the same day – text messages that began with you inviting me to call you again if I felt like talking. I just don’t understand at all your state of mind about me. I have no fear of dying. If you shoot me, I hope you aim well and do it with one shot. However, for your sake, Eileen, I hope you reconsider. From what the Holy Spirit has said and that has been written in the Scriptures, we should understand that murderers do not do well after death. And I have always hoped that, even if we can’t be loving friends in this life, that we might, by the grace of God, be neighbors in the afterlife; and, there, in God’s kingdom we may get along in a truly heavenly way. And another thing, Eileen, if I may make a last request of you – since it is customary that those who are about to be executed be given a last request?”
Eileen: “What is your last request, Mark, before I shoot you?”
Mark: “Eileen, would you please help me to understand you? I mean, why did you go from being friendly to suddenly telling me to push you out of my mind and forget about you? I really don’t understand you. And I really love you, Eileen. And so, I would really be grateful to you if you would help me to understand you before we die together, today.”
Eileen: “Well, Mark, since we both are about to die, I suppose I may as well be honest with you at last about us; and why I can’t be in love with you and have not been able to be honest with you.”
Mark: “Eileen, may I make a cup of coffee for you and a cup of tea for me as we continue this most interesting and last conversation of our lives? And, by the way, Eileen, if I have to die today, there is no one else I would rather die with than you.”
Eileen: “Alright, Mark, make us a cup of coffee and tea and let us enjoy this last hour of life together with a drink and an honest conversation.”
So, Mark got up and went to the pantry and boiled water and made a cup of coffee for Eileen and a cup of tea for himself. Then he brought the cup of coffee on a saucer to Eileen and placed it beside her on the file cabinet beside her. Then, he went back to the pantry and brought his cup of tea and sat down in his chair about 8 feet in front of Eileen.
Eileen: After taking a sip of her coffee, Eileen said, “Thank you, Mark. This coffee is delicious. What brand is it?”
Mark: “It is Maxwell House coffee, Eileen. And there is a little story about that.”
Eileen: “What story, Mark?”
Mark: “It has to do with an old-time TV show that I heard about when I was a very young boy. I was so young, I had to go to bed before it played at night. I only heard the title of the show during commercials as I watched other shows on TV during the early evenings.”
Eileen: “What was the title of that TV show you weren’t able to watch as a little boy, Mark?”
I Remember Mama Mama’s Bad Day Part 1 1950
Mark: “You’re very welcome, Eileen.”
Eileen: “Mark, I also have a question to ask you before answering your last request.”
Mark: “And what is your question, Eileen?”
Eileen: “How can you be so hospitable toward me when I’m about to kill you?”
Mark: “It’s because I am in love with you, Eileen. It is written in the Scriptures for our understanding:
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” -1 John 4: 16-18. NIV Study Bible.
Mark: “And there is a beautiful song about love that I just heard for the first time about 8 days ago. May I play it on YouTube for you, Eileen?”
Eileen: “Alright Mark, play the song. I’d like to hear it before we die together.”
So, Mark went to his computer and brought up YouTube and found the song; and it began to play just as he sat down again and picked up his teacup.
Love Changes Everything (lyrics) Michael Ball & II Divo
Love Changes Everything – Royal Albert Hall | Aspects of Love
After listening to the song, Eileen put down her coffee cup and leaned forward to begin explaining to Mark her mysterious change of heart after their May 27th phone call.
Eileen: “Mark, before our romantic summer of ’74, I read the love story, “The Summer of ’42,” in 1971. And then, during the winter of 1973-74 I was feeling depressed and was also putting on weight. At that time, I was remembering you in our last year at St. Charles School in 1966, in the 8th grade. You asked me to go out with you – even though I was only 13 years old. I could not go out with you, Mark. I was so young. I had never been on a date before. We were both so young. Well, in early 1974, I was in need of a boyfriend. I remembered you, Mark, in 8th grade. I told my mother that I was thinking of you every day. She knew I was depressed and wanted to help me; so, she called your mother and told her that I wanted to see you. Your mother began looking for a way to bring us together. Do you remember anything about this, Mark?”
Mark: “Yes, I do. I went to visit my mother one day. She was reading The Woonsocket Call and told me about the Rhode Island Hikers Club that met every Sunday afternoon to walk in the woods and other outdoor locations in Rhode Island. I told her that I would try it out.”
Eileen: “My mother asked me if I would like to go out on Sunday afternoons with that club for a walk in the woods and to possibly meet you there. I was very agreeable to that scenario; and so, that was how we met again during May of 1974, Mark.”
Mark: “I sometimes wondered about that happy co-incidence of us meeting there, Eileen.”
Eileen: “Well, now you know that it wasn’t purely by innocent co-incidence, Mark.”
Mark: “But that doesn’t by itself help me to understand why you texted me to push you out of my mind and forget about you, Eileen.”
Love changes everything
Eileen: “This now, is the part that has been so difficult for me to face, Mark; and why I told you to push me away, four months ago – coincidentally in May again – just as our romantic “summer of ‘74” also began in May, 46 years ago when we were so much younger then.”
Mark: “Please go on, Eileen. I am dying to hear this.”
Eileen: “I felt so guilty that I had used you during that summer when I was depressed and in need of someone. I only wanted to enjoy a summer fling with you, Mark – to live out a scenario like the one I had read about in the romance novel, “The Summer of ’42.” I was not mature enough at 21 to consider how you would feel at the end of that summer when I wanted to move on, after recovering from my depression. I must confess to you now, Mark, that our romance that summer really did help me, helped my own heart to go on. I was able to resume my education at URI and get my degree in childhood education and get married; and become a teacher. I have a beautiful daughter now. Her name is Mary.”
Mary Did You Know by Clay Aiken
Mark: “It greatly comforts me to know that our summer of ’74 was helpful to you, Eileen.”
Eileen: “Mark, I’m having a sudden change of heart about my intentions for coming here today.”
Mark: “What does that mean, Eileen?”
Eileen: “I don’t want to shoot you, now. In fact, if you don’t mind, I’d like to drop this revolver into your trash and forget all about it.”
Mark: “You may do so, Eileen.”
Eileen got up and walked into the pantry and dropped the gun into the trash. Then she went back into the living room and sat down again.
Eileen: “That song “Love Changes Everything” was so beautiful, Mark. It released me from the mental state I was in and allowed my center to drop down into my heart again – where I had not been in many years. I did not know how to get back there again; but that song somehow did it for me.”
Eileen: “Mark, more than anything else in the world right now I would love to just put my arms around you and hold you for as long as I can.”
Mark: “I have often imagined how sweet it would be to hold you, Eileen, while a sweet love song is playing in the background.”
Eileen: “What love song would you like to hear in the background, Mark, as we embrace?”
Mark: “It’s a song by The Seekers, “I’ll Never Find Another You.”
Eileen: “Let’s listen to that song, Mark; perhaps we could stand in our bare feet and hold each other like a couple dancing a slow dance together?”
Mark: “I’ll put the song on for us, Eileen.” Mark got up and went to his computer and quickly found the song on YouTube. And it began to play as Eileen stood up and Mark walked to her and put his arms around her; and Eileen put her arms around Mark. And they just held each other and moved slowly together in a sweet embrace.
The Seekers – I’ll Never Find Another You – 1964
When the song ended, Eileen said to Mark, “Sometimes a cup of coffee has an unexpected effect on me.”
Mark: “What effect does it have on you, Eileen?”
Eileen: “It makes me sleepy rather than wide awake, sometimes.”
Mark: “Are you feeling sleepy now, Eileen?”
Eileen: “Yes, I am.”
Mark: “You are welcome to lay down in the bedroom, Eileen. That’s the only place there is here for that.”
Eileen: “Thank you, Mark.” And so, Eileen went into the bedroom and lay down. A few minutes later she got up and came into the living room and sat down again in the same chair she had sat in earlier. Mark was sitting in his chair. Eileen looked at Mark and said, “Honest to God, Mark, I am not trying to seduce you, but, as I was laying down it just did not seem right to me to fall asleep without you by my side. Would you lay down beside me, Mark; and simply fall asleep with me – just as we did once before in June of 1974?”
Mark: “Yes, Eileen. I would love to fall asleep by your side.”
So, Mark and Eileen walked together into the bedroom and lay down together on the bed. And they both soon fell asleep. And they slept soundly together for about an hour. And after about 30 minutes of sleeping, they both began to have an identical dream. In their dream, “one like the Son of Man” appeared standing at the foot of the bed. And He said, “Mark, when you awaken, you may kiss your bride.” And to Eileen He said, “Eileen, when you awaken you may kiss your husband.” And then, gazing at both of them, He said, “What God has brought together let not man separate.” And then He disappeared. After another 30 minutes of sleep, Eileen and Mark both awakened at the same time. Eileen gently held Mark’s hand and asked, “Mark, are you awake?” And Mark replied, “Yes, I just woke up, Eileen.” And then Eileen said, “I had a remarkable dream, mark.” “I had a dream, too,” he replied. What was your dream, Eileen?” “I dreamed that someone who appeared to be Jesus, the Son of God, appeared at the foot of the bed; and He told us that we may kiss each other as husband and wife. And that what God had brought together let not man separate.”
Mark: “I had the exact same dream. Maybe it was more than a dream. Maybe the Lord really did appear to us as we slept.”
Eileen: “Mark, can you believe that you are my husband?”
Mark: “Yes, I can believe I am your husband. Can you believe that you are my wife, Eileen?”
Eileen: “Yes, Mark, I can believe I am your wife.”
Mark: “Then we should kiss each other, Eileen, as husband and wife.” So, Eileen and Mark turned to each other and kissed again for the first time since 1974 in Montreal, Canada.
Genesis 2 and 3
Darlene Zschech – Jesus at the Center (Lyrics)
God’s Way of Salvation (John 3:16)
Israel & New Breed – Jesus At the Center (Live Performance)
The Gospel According to Mark, Chapter One