Journal of Joy ~ Lebanon, Tennessee, USA ~ November 2002
11.06.2002, Wednesday ~ Cynthia called to let me know there was a rainbow over Gresham this morning as I was flying out to Tennessee for a sweet vacation with covenant friends. It was very different not to be packing for a Workshop. Taking one suitcase to the airport seemed delightfully abnormal. Thank YOU, JESUS!
The Holy Spoke spoke that I was going to be a keystone while in Tennessee this time. The only significant sign along the highway to the airport was: Interstate Crossroads. As Tennessee is a State that is surrounded by ten other states, its geographical location seemed of immense importance.
Cognitively and spiritually, I knew that it was vital, yet the Holy Spirit’s words remained unclear as though I needed a few more pieces of the puzzle to complete the visual image. A keystone is the pivotal stone in an archway that holds the arch open, as in the creation of an apex or portal. Therefore, my limited understanding was that I was going to Tennessee to open doors open for HIS people to walk through in both the physical and spiritual realms.
As we soared above the picturesque earth below, the pilot interrupted my reverie and announced that we were flying over Golden, Colorado at 7:08 PM. In my spirit, I felt that the pilot’s announcement was a sweet precious gift to me as I had never been to Golden, Colorado to visit my sister Susan’s grave site. It was the first time I had ever flown over this portion of the spectacularly immense, majestic Rocky Mountains. Silently, I whispered a prayer that someday PAPA GOD would allow me to place flowers on her grave stone.
During the flight we watched the movie Signs. As one who views life through a prophetic, artistic, spiritual lens the following quote seemed to be applicable to Christian living. “The first sign you can’t explain. The second sign you can’t ignore. The third sign you can’t forget.” At the time, I translated it to mean the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ were the first, second and third signs from GOD the FATHER to HIS people on earth. How can one explain HIS life? How does one ignore HIS death? How can one forget HIS resurrection? JESUS said, “Signs and wonders will follow those belonging to HIM!” (Mark 17:16-20).
The flight changed planes in Atlanta, Georgia, which was my first time to have a layover in this multi-cultural hub city. While at the airport, I intentionally walked the colorfully adorned and noisy corridors of the airport praying for the territory. The connecting flight to Nashville, Tennessee was seamless like an endless banner across the sky. I love flying into Nashville because one is guaranteed Southern Sweet Tea and a signature row of white rocking chairs upon arrival. It is surely a sweet welcome home!
The Holy Spirit highlighted the Scriptures: Isaiah 40 and Psalm 34 for Lebanon, Tennessee. The Scriptures speak of being a gatekeeper in 2 Kings 7:17 and Daniel 2:22. A person functioning as a gatekeeper is positioned to open King’s Treasures, open gates, open doors and open the House of the LORD every day. As I am in fervent prayer over the latest worship instrument project, the Israel-America “I AM” Glory Rings, I asked the Holy Spirit to cause each intercessor to realize they are the prophetic intercessory gatekeepers in the spiritual realm and to receive the weight of divine responsibility and holy accountability placed on their shoulders.
While in Lebanon, Tennessee at my friend, Joyce’s home, she mentioned that the Holy Spirit had imparted to her a recipe for the 2003 HGRM Anointing Oil. The prophetic proclamation name: HIS GLORY COMING DOWN! I am grateful because it is one less thing I will be responsible to do as I feel very overwhelmed with all that the LORD has given me to do. It is a clear representation of the LORD expanding the tent pegs of HGRM and bringing others to share in HIS vision.
11.07.2002, Thursday ~ Following a leisurely southern breakfast, we drove to a nearby hospital to pray for Emily who had fallen from a ladder. Her physical body was very broken. In the crisp fall afternoon, we drove over to Mary Ellen’s beautiful English style Tudor home, where I met Barbara, Mary Ellen’s closest friend for the first time, and then the four of us traveled thirty minutes into Nashville and enjoyed a lavishly delightful dinner at an extravagant Italian Restaurant. The evening was a sweet time of fellowship and the best ever Tiramisu. The evening was spiritually euphoric.
11.08.2002, Friday ~ Joyce and I met Mary Ellen and Kathie for a southern lunch in a local restaurant. After lunch we returned to the hospital to pray for Emily again. Then we went to Mary Ellen’s for a time of intercessory prayer and worship. Mary Ellen is a gifted musician and provided worship music as we spent the remainder of the afternoon soaking in HIS presence, reveling in HIS goodness, resting in HIS peace, listening to HIS voice and worshiping HIS holiness.
The evening was filled with a dinner party at Jerry and Mary Ellen’s which was followed by more fellowship, prayer and worship.
11.09.2002, Saturday ~ In the morning, Joyce and I met Debbie for breakfast at the Cracker Barrel. Debbie and I met on a previous trip to Nashville. The Lord graciously provided this placid re-connection. Before we departed, I embraced a few moments to rhythmically rock in the culturally famous Cracker Barrel rocking chairs that line the front porch of the restaurant. They are positioned like guardian sentinels arrayed in the dynamic colors of the local sports team. Then Joyce and I continued our expedition of leisure and visited a neighborhood park where we prayed, strolled, talked and dreamed. The tall gangly oak trees were ceremoniously clinging to their remaining leaves as the grounds were thickly carpeted with golden yellow, crimson red and burnt orange leaves. The playground was overflowing with boisterous children shouting raucously surrounded by attentive parents and some obviously protective grandparents. The crisp autumn air felt like a cool mystical balm on my skin. The tangible moisture in the Tennessee air always compels me to an awareness that is unfamiliar as I reside in the northwest, a territory without the weight of humidity captured in the air. As I am inherently task oriented, the slower culture of the southern life style including a casual morning stroll is distinctly atypical.
The afternoon held another stopover to Mary Ellen’s then Joyce and I departed for an evening worship gathering. Through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Michael and DorotheLee founded a house church known as River of Faith. Oh Glory! DorotheLee is the one who ministered at the Aglow Retreat May 1999, at Rockaway Beach, on the Oregon Coast where I met Joyce. In the fall of 1999, DorotheLee invited me to Nashville, Tennessee to offer my first and only worship sword dance at a worship conference. As one who is not professionally trained in any form of movement or dance, at the time, my willingness to offer a worship sword dance was purely given as a sacrificial offering of love to my KING YESHUA. It was a divine evening of sweet reconnection.
11.10.2002, Sunday ~ Early, we arose and prepared for the day. After joining Mary Ellen at a Catholic Church for the morning mass, we drove to Hermitage and worshiped at Harvest International Church, where I was favored to see many friends from previous Glory Ring Workshops held in Tennessee. Surprisingly, I was given the divine privilege of meeting LuLu (from the late 1960s Hee Haw TV).
In the afternoon, Joyce and I were treated to lunch at David’s. The weather reports were inundated with severe hurricane and tornado warnings. The warnings interrupted all forms of media communications. The sounds of sirens filled the air with ominous fear. As one who resides in Oregon, hurricanes and tornadoes are exceeding rare, like once in a hundred years. We gathered in the family room and watched David’s home video recounting the April 16, 1996 Hurricane Charlie. Truly the hand of GOD rerouted the hurricane and calmed the winds as it turned out to be much less devastating than expected. Considering all the lives that were spared, it could only be remembered as a miracle of God.
After lunch we drove over to Watertown to pray for the resilient post-civil war community and small historic southern city because David believed the LORD was directing him to establish a House of Glory in Watertown. The LORD lavishly waved HIS banner of covenant promises over us in an exquisite double rainbow that consumed the full expanse of the Tennessee skyline. The beauty of the LORD’s universe and signs in the heavens always communicate to me HIS amazing sovereign power and providence. HE is the LORD! Have you ever wondered exactly how many illuminating rainbows GOD has meticulously painted across the sky throughout eternity? The cool fall winds stirred and swirled around us with gestures of inviting mysterious immanent changes in the serene southern atmosphere.
11.11.2002, Monday ~ Joyce left early in the morning, before the sun had awakened the day, to her place of employment in downtown Nashville, while I continued this leisurely expedition in a morning of quiet solitude and concentrated prayer. DorotheLee and her daughter, Savannah Faith stopped by Joyce’s home and invited me to join them for an afternoon filled with lunch and shopping. Experientially, I did not know that one could truly spend four hours in a local fabric store. Quickly, I ascertained that shopping in the south is like the whole southern culture, where the focus is purely and intentional social. It is not about completing a task effectively and efficiently, it is about the experience. The focus of our shopping experience what not on what we purchased, it was decidedly on just having fun together creating cherished memories. Although I felt like a fish out of water, I accommodated in as much as I could and hoped my northwest personality would not cause reason for offense. Positioned like opposite poles on a magnet, even though I found the experience exhilarating, it was juxtaposed to my current lifestyle as an itinerant minister. The LORD generously gave us the sweet gift of “girlship” (like fellowship without the fellow). GOD is certainly faithful to HIS plans and destiny for our lives.
After the shopping extravaganza, in the evening, seven of us gathered at Jerry and Mary Ellen’s for a farewell dinner as I was flying out the next morning. Mary Ellen served her famous Italian lasagna, warmed garlic French breach and fresh salad greens. We were comrades linking arms, fostering eternal relationships. The evening held much laughter and joyous storytelling even though on the periphery of each person’s mind there was a concern over the tornado touch downs in sixteen counties of Tennessee tonight. The tornadoes touching down circled around us but did not touch ground in Lebanon.
11.12.2002, Tuesday ~ In the morning, we went to the Lebanon, Tennessee City Prayer Meeting. Mary Ellen, the worship leader, dedicated her new song, Breaker Anointing to me. Tears spilled down my cheeks and there was nothing I could do to stop the flow. When one like myself is called to be a prophetic intercessory worshiper forerunner, being on the frontlines is never easy. Every day my face purposefully turns towards GOD seeking HIS will for the day. Therefore, the gift of encouragement or exhortation from anyone, especially in the form of prophetic music was a rare and deeply appreciated expression in these days.
At the Nashville airport, I was chosen to be the SELECTEE as they pawed through all the worship instrument supplies like dogs at a garbage dump. Then with cynical expressions and derogatory comments they dumped out my wallet exposing all my personal information, and then they carelessly opened the bottle of 2003 anointing oil (it was in a water bottle) at which GOD did not allow them to speak. They became immediately mute. I watched in the spirit realm as GOD released HIS Glory. I remained silent as they trampled through my handbag and carryon luggage like wild boars on the rampage. Their behavior was the diabolical antithesis to the peaceful, leisurely week I had just experienced. Intentionally, I stepped back, remained silent and left the outcome of justice in GOD’s more than capable hands.
The airport experience was an intentional distraction to the serene flight home. Therefore, I embraced the opportunity to give thanks in all things and to bless my enemies for the Glory of YESHUA!