Come one come all to the PA Statewide 24!
I am currently securing a 2nd mortgage to finance a Cheesesteak Challenge for 2 very special intercessory families – that’s 9 cheesesteaks. Hopefully we have a bunch of pictures and stuff of this joyful occasion.
Dedicating this one to my friends at various HOPs:
“LSD can help open your eyes,” he once said. “But there are other ways: meditation, dance, music, fasting.”
-Albert Hofmann, father of the mind-altering drug LSD
Well, I’m glad we have the rest of them covered… 🙂
Here‘s the rest of the story.
This trip was a wild ride. The apathy leading up to it was pretty hard core – it seems that everytime I go to KC I totally lose interest right before. Without fail this apathetic feeling is a precursor to something huge happening. Sure enough.
I went for my second Joseph Company “Cities of Refuge” conference this year. This was regarding marketplace ministry. So this JoCo was held 3 miles away from the prayer room which made me rather dependent on the shuttle and common charity. It was also 25 hours of content stuffed into 2 long days. On Thursday I treated Isaac and my hosts to some Jack Stack because they won the CBB contest. Turned out we are all from Philly which was an added bonus.
On Saturday I met Emily for the coffee that she also legitimately won as the CBB contest winner last week. I then shuttled down for the final day of the conference.
Well just a little bit into the teaching I began getting an enormous headache as well as some serious fever symptoms. It just kept getting worse as the session progressed to the point of my thinking “I haven’t felt this bad in 2 years!” And I really had not. Was convinced I would have to skip the next session to nap if I could.
So I forgave myself for drinking the soda they gave me on the flight out here and asked Jesus to heal me up anyway and did some silent spiritual warfare techniques. It was miserable.
Then the session was closing and they opened the session for prayer and words for people – I figured why not just pray for a few people. I felt slightly better after doing so. In short after lunch I started feeling much better and was feeling great by the end of the day. Also ended up getting a rather public prophetic word at the last session. I’ve never been called out to that degree and it is a bit awkward since I had to stuff my false humility and just receive this rather glowing affirmation with everybody there watching.
My flight leaves in 5 hours. I’ve got a few hours left to enjoy the prayer room.
Well it seems like I was just here… in May.
Met at the airport by the WINNER of the Jack Stack Challenge and met up with friends for dinner. It was quite the BBQ experience I must say.
So any coffee people, please shoot a comment. I am actually sitting in the coffee shop right now without any takers and it’s far more fun with!
Started off pretty intensely. I got slimed with a really nasty, confusing, hopeless dream about screwing up in the workplace, involving someone in my seminar. It was so twisted that there was no way any of it was from God. It was a pathetic attempt to intimidate me, and apparently the last stand…
So I started the day off pretty well. This was such a tip-off that it was funny. Just started forgiving everyone and redeeming the dream.
Hide & Seek
The way some of the ministry times have been going lately, it is obvious to me that God is playing “hide & seek” with me. I deeply appreciate the sincerity and gifting of many who have prayed for me in the prophetic prayer times, however it is apparent that God is deliberately withholding revelation from many who are praying for me. It’s me, not them!
So it is fine, it means the breakthrough will come directly from God, or I suspect some of the little kids who are praying for us tomorrow. That usually happens. Huge implications right back at me as the leader of a prophetic team back home. I wonder how this expectation hinders us as a prayer team…
More on Expectation
I did come down here with a healthy expectation to receive a large amount of prophetic input on various situations. The fact that I bought a plane ticket and took off work for this can put a large expectation on the missions base and its people. If I don’t remind myself that the source is God, I’m in for disappointment and will slime these poor people here with my fleshy expectations. Imagine all the flaky people who didn’t get their ecstatic moment of bliss in the way they wanted. Now imagine the cumulative weight of this against people who are just trying to press in and bless people on the way.
One thing I realized this morning was that when I get offended I am tactful enough to minimize and discount it. This morning I realized that I just need to skip this step and acknowledge that I got my feelings hurt and repent of it. For some reason I really don’t want to fess up to admitting to hurt feelings. After doing this, I was able to really engage in the program, while yesterday I was really disconnected.
Ick. Didn’t think I would be in such a rough fight down here in IHOPland. I think I jumped the hurdle though, thank God.
OK, am I hitting the wall here?
A couple things hit me today –
1. I am under some self-imposed pressure or burden to do some effective prayer while I am here. I think that this is NOT a bad thing even though it is a “works” oriented pressure. I feel like there is a window for me to settle some things and I’m just enjoying the music instead.
2. When I decided to go for it and pace and pray for the issues (blessing my clients, praying for healing for various people including my Uncle), I realized that I was out of sync with the room. They were praying for a release for other HOPs and I was praying my checklist.
3. I am used to praying for anything I want to, anytime I want to, and it was bizarre to be constrained in this way. “Well just walk around the block and pray” you say, and that is certainly what I can do. I just never had that constraint before, even when I was building other HOPs.
4. It sure is easy down here to fast when everyone else is doing it. It is a completely different dynamic than what I am used to. The secrecy factor is missing. However I’m starting to reach new personal territory on this 4th day (I started early). This may be why I’m starting to get a bit antsy. Krusty the demon is around but not as empowered as he is in my natural environs.
5. Perhaps the mental weakness issue is more significant down here since everyone is scaling back for the fast and it is normal. “So why am I getting jacked around in the head?” Because this isn’t a walk in the park, even though the social dynamics/peer pressure makes it easier to enter. Everything seems fine, but I have been a bit irked from time to time.
6. Going deep vs. sanity. Which should I choose? Gotta think about preparing to re-enter the east coast Monday which requires a bit of physical strength.
Anyone care to validate or give their $.02 on this???
Well I’m recouping from a rather intensely quiet prayer slot in the 10am today. Drinking my juice in the coffeeshop.
A couple metaphors for IHOP have been striking me in the past day…
I don’t mean this in a comedic way, but it is just so bizarre to be sitting in the Prayer Room or the church service and seeing all the people from the various media including the webcast, conferences, and even many of your blogs that I follow. Every one here is unique and it is kind of like watching the Simpsons, in that you recognize various people and want to say hi to them.
I also don’t mean this in a weird way, but the HOP is sort of like a zoo. All of the worship leaders are now on global display and the worldwide broadcasting has necessitated a heightening of the platform, which I would suspect could be very much like a cage. The greater platform comes with the price of less spontaneity and a casual atmosphere gives way to a formal one.
I also suspect that it can be somewhat highly annoying to be engaged in pacing around the room and have people who you don’t know are out of town blog lurkers saying hi and trying to converse while in the prayer room. “Who is that?” So I’m trying to give you all space.
I could not really fathom the logistics of stadiums full of intercessors praying and fasting. How do they walk around? I gotta walk around when I pray. I am realizing that you actually can have an intense prayer meeting and be limited to your seat due to population density. The stadium is just a much higher level than this, and I now have a vision that it can happen… at least for those who ramp up to it.
The Juice Challenge
Still up for buying brown water or juice for those who seek it. Just go to the “About Me” page for a photo of what I look like…
I am beat. Not too much, but I will really start to drag if I don’t get some more rest. Went back to the base for a 1 hour nap that almost hit the spot.
I would like to develop a thought regarding the inverse proportions out here. Basically on the east coast where I am from, people are everywhere and it is annoyingly crowded all the time, EXCEPT in the church. So you get all bent out of shape going through life if you are not careful. It is hard to love others sometimes because it is so crowded.
Out here in KC, from what I have seen (very little but it’s my best guess), this situation is flipped over a bit. It is a city but the density is not quite as crowded, EXCEPT in the church or the prayer house.
My point is that I have a newfound respect for a group of people who are at times crammed into church or a prayer room (I’m sitting toward the front of it and the lights courtesy of God TV are so bright that I may get a headache). On top of this they are ALL attempting to walk out some form of fasting for the next 39 days. I cannot fathom the potential to get really irritable after day 2, and for what it’s worth, I give you guys some kudos (humble kudos I guess).
In the interest of my readers who are not here at the KC IHOP I will be blogging my experiences here from my outsider’s perspective. Perhaps these perspectives will be amusing or even insightful for the locals here. If you didn’t pray for my uncle, please do.
Forerunner Christian Fellowship: AM
After attending churches in Philly suburbs that have 25-50 members for the past year, attending a small megachurch was a bit different. No room to walk around, you are stuck in between people. Very little jumping around or outwardly demonstrative worship in the congregation.
The Camera-Probe Droid
There was a funky videocamera attached to a 50 foot pole that would capture the worshippers in the middle of their interactions with the Divine, for the thousands of voyeurs on the other side of the monitor or TV. I find these weird cameras swinging around reminiscent of a droid from Star Wars. It puts a frigid vibe on my worship anytime a camera is in front of me. This may be because I was jumbo-tronned at a PK gathering awhile ago.
Forerunner Christian Fellowship: PM
This was the same thing. Makes sense since the poor nightwatch people probably don’t make it in for the AM.
The Men’s Room
Due to flight restrictions banning liquids, I was a bit dehydrated yesterday, so I drank extra water during the service, which was a problem towards the end of the AM service. It took me 10 minutes in the cattle herd at the end to reach the bathroom. I was even more incredulous that the men’s room had a single stall? Had to wait behind three other guys in there. When I got in, I realized that I could select from a #1 (urinal), #2, (toilet) or take the literal plunge and shower under my choice of 5 shower heads. Never have I had such an array of selections for my hygienic needs after having to wait in line for so long.
My evening is about to come to a close. It is 140 am and I have a JoCo retreat to register for in 6 hours… still wired from my flight out here and the events of Saturday. My hosts are calling me “Jack Bauer” because I was up for nearly 24 after doing a 4-6 am at a “24” service in PA.
He fell off it yesterday morning from the 2nd floor.
Just found out about this tonight after church. Don’t think that he or my aunt would mind my blogging this, as long as we pray for him. He has a shattered shoulder and a “brain bleed” that is being monitored. He had a Level II Trauma but is stable I think. I will update as I hear good news.
Even in this there was a high level of protection. His glasses fell with him but remained intact instead of shattering. I believe that God is able and eager to speed up his recuperation and fully restore the use of his arm which is in need of serious rehab in the natural right now. As well as dissolving any clots from this bleed.
Fortunately I happen to be stuck at a 24 hour prayer center all week long, so Uncle Bruce will be getting some serious prayer here.