it was 5 am saturday morning. she was wide awake. sleeping in wasn’t happening today. another roller coaster week in her never a dull moment life was over. it was time to rest and reflect, laugh again.
it was a melting pot of warfare, sleepless nights, tears, passionate conversations with bad endings. demons swearing at her. nice. what was that about being blessed when you’re persecuted and people talk ugly to you? she shook her head and laughed. the devil only has a hissy fit when you’re doing something right. well then.
trust the process
“trust the process,” her friend told her. when she heard it, she knew it came right from papa god’s heart. trust the process. indeed. she’d asked papa for his best for her.
she’d seen him through his papa’s eyes for some time now. she saw him in truth, in perfection, as a beloved son even when he wasn’t fully awake to this reality.
he’d had brilliant prophetic words spoken over him, words of promise, hope and a future. he saw vignettes of unlimited possibilities and potential, the ways papa god wanted to bless him as his son. he saw how his gifts and talents could be brought to life.
most importantly, he was presented with the beautiful gift of a wife, a full partner he could walk with in this life. would he step into his destiny? would he come back for her?
this was a major life decision. in returning to her, he’d be turning his face fully back to papa god. it meant walking arm in arm with him in unity. it meant stepping into sonship.
it meant radical change in direction, a homecoming worth celebrating loudly. the cloud of witnesses perched on the edge of their seats wondering how this would play out. would he choose well? would he be bold and courageous? yes, the stakes were high but the reward was great.
she’d prayed intently over him and his family for cleansing and restoration in their blood lines. for all the enemy stole to be returned to them 7-fold.
weeks turned to months, months grew to years. she wept over him, took communion over him, visioning life with him. she determined to cooperate fully with papa god, willing him to have every opportunity to make the best choice for his future and future generations.
she prayed for wisdom and revelation that the eyes of his understanding would be open. she prayed for his heart to be one with father god’s heart again. she called to his spirit to rise up and lead his soul, declaring his spirit would only be led by holy spirit.
faithful friends stood with her and prayed. in all of it she kept telling papa god she wanted his best.
she gave him wide margins to work things out on his own. she spoke when holy spirit prompted her – and sometimes when silence was the better option. grace covered her.
unconditional love often gets an unexpected response
wisdom dictated several things she would not compromise. those things had earned her unfriending, blocking and ‘goodbye.’ unconditional love often gets an unexpected response.
jesus chimed in on her thoughts, showing her some of his daily experience. he’s telling us, “i love you, i’m here for you, not leaving you. ever.” his compassion rises, watching us trying to stitch up our gaping wounds. we lay there bleeding, still holding up the hand, saying, “i’m good here. get the hell away from me.”
see how we are
see how we are. still, he doesn’t leave. he waits until we give in, showing him our wounds, allowing him to love and heal us. she remembered her conversation with jesus, drowning in her own lake of mess. “i am so freaking broken. what do you want with me??”
she could see it wasn’t him rejecting her. it was a combination of pain, fear and angst speaking, a realization that the old ways of dodging brokenness weren’t working.
she didn’t leave, either. she loved him hard, praying for him when she would have rather kicked his backside. love never fails, never gives up. it gets up in the morning to love another day, to love the hell away.
now, she waited, trusting the process, waiting on the promise.
it was a birthday gift from a *sister, the one who filled the role of *jonathan in their david and jonathan relationship.
it was breathtaking, in full bloom the day she received it, adorned with five beautiful white blossoms. she’d never had an orchid before. it intimidated her. she knew they could be tricky to care for.
not only that, but this was a gift from a friend. what if it died? this was different than failing with a plant you bought for yourself. there was pressure to keep the plant alive and nurture the relationship that was clearly from papa god. oh boy.
over time, the delicate white petals dried up and gently fell to the cabinet below. the stems that held the petals also dried up and fell off. only a long green stalk remained where so much glory and beauty had shown weeks earlier. even the stalk began to dry up. she clipped it back, hopeful it would prevent further decay. it did not.
desperate, she cut it back again. ugh. this was a failure. no, she was failing at caring for the white orchid. so she thought.
there was danger in overwatering these plants. she followed the watering instructions. and somehow overwatered it. the little pieces of bark on the top of the pot grew mold. the small new shoots at the bottom of the plant were moldy. more failure. frustrated, she cut off some of the moldy shoots. they would not recover from the mold.
conversely, the green leaves at the base of the plant were huge. they looked healthy while the stalk that once held the flowers was dried up and quite a bit shorter than before. she shook her head. overall, the prognosis was poor. the big leaves were healthy but would it ever bloom again?
every day she looked at the orchid, wondering if she should just throw it in the dust bin and be done with it. looking at it was tormenting, a constant reminder of failure.
one day, with a burst of resolve, she moved it to the window ledge. here it would get intense sunlight whenever the sun made an appearance during the rainy winter. she still gave it an occasional drink, teetering between willing it to live and wanting to pitch it. she was sure she sucked at caring for this gift. where had the green thumbs gone?
months went by. on the saturday morning before easter sunday, she decided to give it a little drink. she considered it might be wise to turn the whole plant around on the window ledge. the backside of the orchid could benefit from the sun, too.
this complicated plant closely mirrored another relationship. she wrestled with vision, hope, and big promises from papa god about this one. all her eggs were in this one basket. the investment was great, the risk high, the reward and return not yet realized. it made her lay awake at night sometimes. what was that about walking by faith and not by sight?
reaching down, she turned the plant 180° and set it down gently. sitting back down at her desk, she saw it. there was a new, beautiful green shoot growing from the stalk she’d cut back and left for dead. not only that, there was another smaller shoot growing up at the base of the pot on the top of one of those big, healthy green leaves.
new life was springing up all over this plant.
she was dumbstruck. leaning in for closer examination with wide eyes and eyebrows raised, she found yet another new shoot growing from underneath another large green leaf. even the moldy shoots that remained were growing new shoots. what???
the stalk she’d thought was dead was now producing new life. she looked at it, tears running down her face. new life was springing up all over this plant she’d wanted to toss out.
she looked spoke to the orchid and the man she loved in her words of blessing.
“i bless you to grow and bloom more than you were ever told you could.”
the plant and the man would respond beautifully to her words of love and encouragement.
it was easter morning when she wrote this post. the deer were passing through the back yard, playing and leaping as they often did. her morning cup of coffee went down easy as she listened to elisabeth cooper (the journey) sing about the banqueting table set before her.
the plant continued to speak to her. things were seldom as they appeared. more tears flowed.
then she heard daddy god’s quiet voice break into her thoughts, mingling with her hopeful tears.
her experience with high tea was limited to british tv programs. she’d spent countless hours howling in laughter watching ‘fawlty towers‘, ‘keeping up appearances‘ and ‘to the manor born.‘ she’d owned every episode on vhs, even had them memorized, a fact that was a well kept secret until now. she’d always had a fascination with all things british, the humor, the mannerisms, jane eyre, the yorkshire moors and old english estates. fancy that.
her momma told her of her heritage as a child: english, irish and german. the german slice was of little interest, further proven out by her near failure of german class in high school. the english and irish pieces of her heritage, though, they were fascinating and very alive. she was convinced narnia was a real place somewhere over there. and by george, she was going to have a chocolate box cottage one day, yes, she was.
papa god, good papa that he is, why, he even brought her a friend whose roots were all united kingdom. she grew up having tea several times a day. fascinating. black tea, cucumber sandwiches, sausage rolls, little cakes and tarts, biscuits and digestive crackers. licorice all sorts and peppermints. she knew about all of it, lived it. brilliant.
weeks prior, her friend had told her of this place, a real destination, a very british place with all manner of british fair. oh my. they plotted and planned to visit and eat english pastry. filled with gluten. and sugar. it was time to break all the eating rules if only for a bit.
finally, the day came. they were going to go the ‘place’ for high tea. she speculated to said friend, “certainly, there will be a portal in the place and we’ll just translate to the united kingdom. why not?” indeed, why not?
in keeping with the english theme, rain fell steadily as they drove along to their destination. the pair of them were rather a sanitized version of thelma and louise with a jesus bent, slightly more than eccentric and completely over people pleasing. this was their time. yes, it was.
her friend encountered a problem during the drive. the passenger headrest did not fit her head and neck properly, so for nearly the entire trip, she was not only uncomfortable, but also in a bit of pain. clearly, this was not acceptable. alas, there was no way to remedy the issue while they were driving, so on they went.
each lady had dressed for the occasion, looking very lovely, all made up and gushing with childlike anticipation. when they pulled up to the front of the restaurant and gift shop, she put the car in park and took in the sight before them. her mouth opened to a perfect ‘o’ like shirley temple might have done.
she drew in a long breath like a little girl seeing her first lollipop. the women turned and looked at each other. oh. my. goodness. they had arrived. they were going in. this was going to be good, jolly good, right?
they walked to the entrance and paused, trying to decide who would go in first. it was too much excitement. walking through the foyer, they approached the doorway into the restaurant. a voice without a body asked how many were in their party. she responded, “two, please,” to the invisible woman who then appeared to take them into the dining room.
they slowly entered the charming, quaint space and looked about. the hostess encouraged them to sit wherever they would like. they agreed on a table near the window with a wall opposite them on one side and more tables on the other. the wall featured various photos of british royalty. they gazed upon the royal family, prince philip and the queen mum. she was resting on the wall right above them, gazing down upon their table. surely all would be well if the queen was keeping watch.
their waitress left them to peruse the menus. more big eyes formed as oohs and aahs sounded over the potential selections available to their palates. this was akin to the wallace and gromit episode, ‘a grand day out.‘ could it get better? they decided on the high tea plate. it looked like a feast. after placing their orders, they looked at each other across the table, still hardly believing they were there. it was surreal. america was a world away as they took in the atmosphere.
her friend was moving her neck about, still trying to ease the ache she felt from the headrest issue. always the fixer, always the healer, she looked across the table and spoke. “if you ever get a pair of those balls….” her words trailed off as her ears heard what her mouth had just uttered in public. at the very proper british restaurant.
it hit her at the same time she observed her friend’s expression, the mirth showing in her eyes and already escaping her mouth. and then it was over. it went from zero to sixty in three seconds flat as both women erupted in laughter, doubled over with hands over their mouths. did that really just happen? yes, love, it most certainly did. brilliant.
kind reader, do stop for a moment. it’s not what you think. really. those balls are not the balls you’re imagining right now. these balls were invented by a ballerina in new york city. these are different, for different purposes. oh my. google miracle balls. you will see.
back to the problem at hand. there was no way to reel those words back in. she didn’t dare look at the family to her right. she didn’t know if the father or his children had heard her words, but they were certainly hearing them try to contain the snorts and chortles. crikey, mate.
after several minutes of hysterics, they contained themselves. the queen mum hanging on the wall was no longer looking on with approval, however. her countenance had gone from a controlled, stately expression to one of stern disapproval. who were these two brash american women sorely lacking in manners and decorum, and what was a queen to do?
enjoy high tea, that’s what.
and they did. what a meal. it was more gluten and sugar than either of them had consumed in six months.
sometimes it helped her to write about things. sometimes it did not. she still wasn’t sure where this would land on the processing meter. the rock band ‘til tuesday‘ played on her itunes. those old familiar songs coaxed her angry seventeen year-old girl back out of hiding to confront this goliath. she was still angry, and she came out swinging. it was safe to be angry now, safe to confront the injustices, the lies and the shame.
she was quite cognizant of the fact that justice would not come from him. it would only come from papa god, the only one who could fix the wrongs, make them right, restore what had been stolen. innocence. purity. trust.
it was all true. he made bad choices in abusing his position of authority. he did bad things to her. he broke her heart, stole her self-worth. it was also truth his actions did not define him anymore than they defined her – that was harder to reconcile. it was ugly all around. the movie reel of those years was painful to watch as it played through her head, even after so much time.
she had no desire to out him, no desire to destroy his life or family. if it came out, it would be because he himself told the story. it would not be her doing. she found a recent photo of him on the internet. he was all gray now. so would she be if it weren’t for hair color.
back in the day, no one said anything when they saw it happening. and it happened a lot. thousands upon thousands of young girls at high schools around the country were manipulated, seduced and sexually assaulted by male teachers. the ones there to protect became the predators. it happened to the boys, too. and it still does.
was it easier to overlook adult indiscretions than protect a child? apparently so. it was easier than confrontation resulting in a lost reputation or a statutory rape charge.
no one knew much about soul ties or soul wounds in those days. no one knew what would utterly break the fragile heart of a seventeen year-old girl. maybe he didn’t know, either. maybe he would have made a different choice. maybe not. she hadn’t been the only one.
his history wasn’t any nicer than hers, she recalled. an abusive father. beatings. similar story, different town. too many similar stories, not enough love, not enough goodness. not enough honor. no healthy boundaries. no respect for women. and no jesus.
the summer of heartbreak
it was not the summer of love. it was the summer of heartbreak and more loss, the quick, necessary construction of more protective walls. when he took her up north for a weekend, it was to tell her he was breaking up with her. he was going to go live his dream, moving far enough away to put several states and ocean water between them.
even now, she couldn’t remember when she began to cry or how she stopped. the song ‘voices carry’ played, cautioning her to keep her voice down, “hush, hush, keep it down now, voices carry, hush, hush, keep it down now, voices carry..”
the motorcycle ride home from that weekend was several hours long. a motorhome crossing the center line on a curve nearly took them out. the weather was a mix of sunshine, rain and hail. she had blisters on her face for weeks after.
the questions still came to her. school administrators, why didn’t you protect us? you saw it – you saw it all. the other teachers saw it all, too. teenagers are no less vulnerable than small children – the vulnerability just looks different.
dad, mom, where were you? she knew where they were. miserable in their own mess. did anyone see her? did anyone love her? was she just invisible? helloooo? was anyone there?
sigh. yes, her parents did the best they could do with what they had at the time. no use crying over what was anymore. well, no. not exactly. to forgive without fully feeling anger or grief leaves a wound that weeps silently for years. righteous anger demands expression as much as it demands justice.
she loved her parents, honored them as a choice of her will. it was the right thing to do. in the big picture, it mattered quite a lot, even though there were days she wanted to be jenny from the movie, ‘forrest gump’ and throw rocks at the house she grew up in. throwing rocks only caused more brokenness. it wasn’t a solution.
throwing rocks wouldn’t take back the hand of the parent that slapped her, upsetting her so much she hyperventilated, her left lung collapsing. she called him to take her to the hospital. there was no one else she could call. he was bothered, annoyed even. he was getting ready to leave on vacation and there she was all emotional and unable to breathe. he took her to the emergency room in his pickup, went home, and headed west on his motorcycle.
she told the doctor what happened at home. he blew it off, didn’t report it. when her mom came to visit her in hospital, she spoke firmly to her. “tell that ********* if he ever hits me again, he’s going to jail.”
all the #metoo stuff triggered memories and opened old wounds. she could see his face, even recall the last time he showed up at her house at 2 am, throwing little pebbles at her bedroom window to wake her up. her father came downstairs to wake her, announcing, ‘that guy is outside waiting for you,’ as she wondered what he wanted.
perhaps he had guilt.
she’d heard he slept with another high school girl. more insult heaped upon injury. and now he was here, quite drunk. she was seventeen. he was twenty-four. the numbers said what they said. he should have known better in a few things.
they walked off the farm yard out to the creek. he was playing, acting strangely, teasing her. she was not amused. they walked back to the farm. she begged him not to get back on his motorcycle. he was too drunk to drive. he left anyway. that was the last time she saw him.
she wondered if he’d given up the scientology cult, if he’d recognized jesus coming after him hard yet, she hoped so. now, she prayed for it.
her emotions still registered anger. but it was good anger. it was okay. be angry, sin not. she looked him in the eyes in the spirit. he could barely look back at her hazel eyes on fire.
“let me be clear. you had no right to take what was not yours. but i forgive you.” with a choice of her will, she forgave him. she’d asked jesus to take it all. maybe throwing a bucket of rocks one by one into the river would help process any remaining feelings of anger.
there was more. hidden freemasonry curses on her life demanded things of her she never knew, never agreed to. the unknown agreement her grandfather made with the occult set her on paths of death and destruction. grandpa didn’t know what he signed up for, and when he realized it, he couldn’t get out. momma’s life was cursed, as was her dad’s, their life together. curses of all manner came on her, beginning in the womb, bringing devastation on every level.
she realized she had rejected her own beauty because it was always used to destroy her. now, she could embrace that same beauty with no more fear of exploitation, manipulation or abuse of authority.
she was papa’s girl before anything else these days. she had overcome the past. she wasn’t defined by the things that were done to her or said about her. she wasn’t the whore the clique girls at school said she was. she wasn’t the broken, unloved seventeen year-old anymore, either.
absolute truth tells her a different story about who she is, about who the people who hurt her really are. absolute truth declares all humanity is made in the image and likeness of papa god.
humans are good, the very crown of creation. even in the darkest moments, true glory dwells within the man or woman doing the bad things. humans already in the light of papa god must seek it and see it in those still sleeping, to awaken them, to call them into sonship with papa god.
she did a once-over of her life now. she was rich. rich in peace. rich in friendships. rich in love, compassion and forgiveness. rich in laughter, rich in joy.
the visual came a moment later.
smiling now, she sat right down in the weeds and waited for the poppies to grow up around her. for years, they’d been watered with her tears, sorrow, forgiveness, laughter & hope. they grew strong, tall and brilliant, drowning out the dullness of the weeds.
jesus took her through her healing when it was safe.
he made her new.
she was a graceful, glorious one. and always had been.
she wasn’t sure when the thought came to her. and to go to that restaurant? she hadn’t been there since they’d last been there together. the pleasant thought stayed with her until it became almost a compulsion. breakfast food. ham and eggs. what?
the weekend arrived and the prompting to go out to breakfast persisted. but it wouldn’t happen today. today was just about rest. she had no intention of leaving the house. the last week brought revelation and information she hadn’t necessarily appreciated, even though it was necessary. mucking around in family cobwebs was dusty and dirty. an epsom salt bath to get it off was in order. saturday was largely uneventful, exactly the way she wanted it.
then sunday morning came. she rose early and cleaned up. should she go to church? no. that was easy. she was going out to breakfast. ham and eggs called her. ridiculous, but all right.
in the meantime, another friend texted her. she was going through some transitions and needed time. they talked until the issues were unpacked and prayers were spoken to resolve them. it was good to be daughters of the king. he was kind, loving, patient. he ruled his kingdom well.
she left the house, got in her car and drove downtown to the restaurant. there was parking right in the front of the stairs up to the entrance. she parked and sat in the car for a moment. off to the right was the courtyard they’d sat in so many times after church drinking iced teas, beer or hot tea depending on the weather and the mood.
they’d sorted things in this place, laughing, crying, grieving, making friends with their favorite waitress, all the while looking to the future. the memories were sweet and there would be more of them. soon.
this morning, no one was sitting outside. it was still cool, the weekend prior to the grand eclipse. everyone was out of town getting in position to witness the heaven-kissing-earth event.
the only activity was the young woman sweeping the entrance to the courtyard. she was a teenager, fifteen or sixteen perhaps, with long sandy, blonde hair pulled back in a pony tail. she was assigned to wait on any guests who chose to sit outside during her shift.
she was drawn to her. why? she grabbed her bag and exited the car, greeting the young woman at the same time. “good morning! how are you?” there was purpose in being friendly. a door needed opening. they made some small talk, and then she saw them. the young woman’s right cheek had scratches all over it.
“honey, what happened to your cheek?” she asked. the young woman hesitated, unsure of herself. was she embarrassed? was she afraid? what was it?
finally, the waitress met her gaze and answered. “i, uh, fell down. i’m sort of clumsy. i fall down a lot.” she looked into the young woman’s eyes intently. did she call her out or did she meet her where she was? grace took over.
“well, then. you are a daughter of god, and he didn’t make you to be clumsy and fall down. do you mind if i pray for you, honey?” “no, not at all,” the waitress smiled shyly.
she bridged the distance between them with two steps and put her left hand on the girl’s right shoulder. in a few sentences, she commanded her angels to protect her from future falls and harm of any kind, declaring that daddy god would order her steps and make them sure. she blessed her.
when she opened her eyes, she saw the young woman still had her eyes closed. it was a sweet image to see. as they finished, a young man, either a cook or a waiter from inside the restaurant called out from the top of the stairs to young woman. hmm. okay. she would have time to observe more while she ate. she went up the stairs and got seated.
the menu choices were varied and good, but she stuck to ham, eggs, potatoes and sourdough toast. as she ate, she recalled another meal in that place with other dear friends she hadn’t seen in months. more good memories. it was good to be here and think on happy things.
the young woman appeared to clear her plate and refill her water glass. she had been touched that a stranger loved her enough to pray for her, and not say out loud what they both knew: she was not clumsy. she did not fall. someone had pushed her down. hard.
they kept the secret between them and daddy god. it was fine for now. but when she went back there again, she would be checking on the girl who wasn’t clumsy.
after the gathering, things opened up and began to accelerate. the help and revelation she’d asked father for were present and available. it was time to clear out the mess, to get some things scrubbed clean.
as she considered what was before her, she knew she needed wisdom and equipping. “teach me, lord. i have to be equipped.” he answered her quickly. “i’ve made you to be a warrior, a strong one. do not be afraid to learn the things i am going to teach you to overcome the enemy where you live.” she answered him simply. “okay.”
he went on to give her a visual to help her walk it out. she saw a woman in a torn, dirty t-shirt and jeans on her knees in the dirt. she was washing clothes the old fashioned way with a washboard and a tub of water. each piece of clothing had years of wrong alignments, curses, stains and grime that had become part of the fabric. her long hair partially obscured her view as she rubbed each piece of clothing across the washboard until it looked like new.
her nails were broken, her arms and shoulders ached. she was tired, yes, but it didn’t matter. enough was enough. she was going to recover all her family had suffered. the days of demons controlling her, her family and her city were coming to an end.
broken to whole
this new book was packed with revelation. both women bought the book at the roughly the same time. her friend began with the final chapter. that signaled significance, so she began there, too. what she read set her over on tilt. it was true, then. those gut feelings didn’t lie.
she dialed her momma’s cell phone. it was late there. she might be sleeping. the telephone rang several times. to her surprise, momma answered the phone.
“mom. you’re still up?”
“yes, i’m just watching television.”
“i wasn’t sure you’d be awake. i know it’s late there. listen, i’ve been looking into some things and i have some questions. do you know if anyone on your side of the family or dad’s was ever involved in freemasonry?”
momma jumped right in. “your dad would never get involved with anything like that, no. but grandpa was in it. he joined through the pipe fitter’s union or something. they promised him a lot of money when he retired.”
she held her breath for a moment. momma continued. “you know, they don’t believe in god, don’t you?”
“yes, mom. i know. it’s evil. and it explains why grandpa was so tormented when he died.” momma’s next words caught her off guard. “i know. that’s why i left the room.” she recalled the sounds of the sick, elderly man screaming in his hospital bed. both women were silent as their personal movie reels played in their minds simultaneously. the unredeemed parts of his soul were about to go through cleansing fire. it must have been terrifying for him.
this was a new topic of conversation for them. the younger woman had a myriad of questions answered in a few short sentences, while the older one wasn’t sure where it was going. she continued on interviewing her momma. “what about grandma’s side? were any of them involved in this stuff?”
“i don’t know. i was just an infant when grandpa took me away.” “i thought you told me you were three years old when he took you?”
“no, i was a baby. they settled it in divorce court. grandpa was 7 or 8 years older than my mother. her mother thought she was too young to be married and have a child.” well, then. clearly some soul fractures occurred in those events. and they continued.
this would have been enough trauma, but now it was apparent that freemasonry oaths and curses were in play, too. when grandpa died, they took full effect on her momma. as the oldest child in the next generation, they impacted her as well as her own son.
they talked a few minutes longer, reviewing names and rank in her grandmother’s family again. ethelynn (grandma) was the oldest, then tommy. she remembered he was in the air force years. he used to send gifts from japan. one christmas, she received a beautiful jewelry box as the rest of the family unwrapped their own gifts. she still had the japanese doll he had given her momma.
she knew uncle dwight. she’d met him and aunt joan when they came for graduation. he’d served in the navy. momma spoke up. “there was another brother, too.”
“yes. there was another brother after tommy. all i know about him is that he was a drunk. and dwight was the youngest.”
more rabbit trails to follow. something with london persisted. others were seeing it, too. something about going back to her roots. in the meantime, it was time to get clean of the freemasonry mess.
she went into the heavenly court of accusation to deal with the matter, acknowledging and agreeing with the accuser that, yes, her grandfather had participated in this evil. she forgave him and pled the blood of jesus as her righteousness. the power of the curses began to weaken instantly. there was more work to do but it was a good beginning. there would be more interviews with momma.
additional research identified the local lodges and other fraternal organizations near the place she grew up. on the surface, they appeared harmless enough. but they were not.
when allegiance is given to anything but father god, there is idolatry. and there are issues.
the weeks apart turned into months. truth be told, it was not easy. standing and believing took on new meaning. her faith grew exponentially in the process.
day by day, she took communion, prayed and declared over them and their children, mixed lot that they were. when she prayed, she saw things and then she would speak them out. in one vignette, she saw him with his head resting on father god’s chest, hearing the heartbeat of the one who made him.
in another, she saw father god building a new bridge between him and one of his children. they approached from opposite ends of the bridge, getting closer to each other every day. in the moment they met in the middle, they entered into a brand new beginning, one that would make up for the lost years.
she knew he was getting closer. father gave her dreams to encourage her to keep doing what she was doing. he was so close, she could feel it. when the breakthrough began, she would see him coming to the house to get her, standing at the front door ringing the doorbell.
other times, she would see him at her work. memories of them working in the conference room together would flood back to her mind. they were precious, sweet and painful at the same time. their foundation together had been good, but now it would be strong, solid, immoveable. father said so.
several friends knew this road they were walking out. their prayers were impactful, clear, declarative, filled with power and love. praying together, they moved things that had blocked and hindered, clearing a path for his healing, freedom, future and calling.
on the day she cut a cord of control and witchcraft, one friend observed it would take him a few days to get his bearings. this action was critical. the ties that held him captive held him no more. now, he was able to move freely like never before.
and then, days later, father let her see him walking free. on a thursday night after work, she headed to the pool for a swim. it was the same pool where they’d met a year earlier. it was the same park they walked and talked around many times.
she was parked on the street sitting in the car talking to another friend. their conversation went all over the place, rabbit tracks in every direction. they were still getting to know each other. there was a lot of ground to cover – and not. conversations were rarely short and this was no exception. she opened the car windows to keep from melting from the heat. she rolled down the passenger window and looked to her left. what she saw stopped her talking in mid-sentence.
there he was, walking on the path. she looked again, hard. yes, it was him. “oh, my god, he’s here, ****’* here!!! he’s about twenty feet away from me walking on the path around the park. what do i do?!?!”
‘”what is the lord saying to you to do?” “i don’t know! my heart is beating so hard i can’t think.” she stopped talking to listen, to feel and know what to do. then it was easy.
“i’m not doing anything. i’m not going after him. he still has to come for me when he’s ready. i just get to see him.” crying, she continued, “he looks good. he’s standing taller. and his gait seems more purposeful, like he’s freer and sorting things out.”
she waited to see if he went into the pool building. he did not. he kept walking. “okay, he’s out of sight now. i’ve got to get in the building while he’s on the other side of the park.” they postponed their remaining conversation until later.
she went on to swim. what was normally relaxing was anything but after the excitement of the ‘sighting.’ she kept an eye on the men’s changing room to see if he’d walk through the door.
when later came and their conversation resumed, both women agreed how special it was for father to let her see him. she knew a few more things now, with certainty: he was healing. he was free. he was stronger. and he would be coming for her soon.
the next morning, another friend messaged her. she asked if something had happened with him due to her post the night before: “tears of joy, peace, contentment, high expectations and a pint of organic vanilla ice cream drowning in chocolate sauce. it was a grand day. ♥”
this friend had surmised correctly, and she had some encouragement to bring, as well. she offered what father showed her:
“it’s not a long road between you two,” father says. “turn around, look.” she continued. “i see things in pictures mostly. so i saw the path being swept, and you a short distance away waiting. father is saying turn around and look. maybe an encouragement to see what father is doing.”
yes, it was an encouragement. yes, yes, yes! she mulled over the words again. “it’s not a long road between you two. father says, “turn around, look.”
she turned around to look.
psalm 37:4 the voice
take great joy in the eternal!
his gifts are coming, and they are all your heart desires!
neither one of them remembered exactly when they became facebook friends. was it four months, six months? it was only in recent weeks that regular communication began. they both caught it. something was happening.
initially, she wasn’t planning on attending the event. there were obstacles, some natural, some spiritual. the natural ones were easy to see, the spiritual not so much. she sensed dark spirits trying to keep her from going, from connecting. one friend lovingly prodded her until she agreed to go. she let go of the obstacles she could see and pressed through the ones she could not. father god would take care of it all.
it was time to go, to meet the tribe in person. and that new friend. there was something there, something important. when the day arrived, she drove north and met with customers she’d grown to love over the years. those appointments went well. now, it was time to meet the new friend and get with ‘family.’
they’d exchanged telephone numbers days earlier, anticipating meeting. the texting began, then the calls to figure out where to meet for coffee. after muddling through disconnects and bad reception, they agreed on a nearby starbucks location.
she got there first and ordered, nearly inhaling the frosty frappachino to counter the heat outside. as she waited at the large table, she observed a man to her left.
he was mumbling and reading stuff that was well, not right and not truth. the book cover saidsomething about the legion of mary, whatever that was. it was legion, all right, that was for certain. interesting. an enemy plant here? what was he thinking? they would pray for him. of course they would.
the liar was shaking in his boots about this relationship. that was obvious. no matter. she prayed in tongues and watched the guy, smiling at him when he would happen to steal a glance her way.
then, the moment arrived. the new friend walked in the door and crossed the room. they embraced like old friends only needing to get reacquainted. after having the baristas craft a cool beverage for her, they both sat down on high stools at the table. the conversation began flowing like water. holy spirit joined them and joy erupted all over the place.
three hours and thousands of words later, they parted company, albeit unwillingly. she had to get to the meeting. what a thrill it was to drive the last few miles and anticipate the joy to come.
after parking, she first met and hugged the precious friend who’d never let up getting her there. then there was everyone else. she was overcome with emotion. it was surreal to see, touch, hug and love so many people she’d only known long distance.
all these relationships spanned from a few months to several years. she had yet to comprehend why she screamed not once, but twice when she saw her friend from the u.k. she’d never done that before for anyone. maybe love just does that.
even with the physical distance, so much of life had been shared heart to heart in telephone conversations and over chat. that epic friday evening was a wash of glory, tears, laughter and worship on a level she had sorely missed for years. she was finally with family, her tribe. and it was good. but someone was missing.
saturday morning came. more teaching, more fellowship, then late lunch at a local restaurant mulling over all the wonderful things happening. she acted on the nudge to call her new friend to come and join them that evening. they agreed on a time, and in a matter of hours, they were sitting together again, side by side this time. she was on the right, her friend on the left.
the teaching was good, rich, full of life and impartation. then came time for the offering. she had four one dollar bills in her wallet. the remaining large bills were a gift from the new friend for a trip home to see momma. that was important. she looked at the ones and put them back in her wallet. she had no peace giving the cash. dad spoke. “you don’t need to sow into this conference. it’s my gift to you.” she thanked him silently.
the holy moment
five minutes later, he spoke again. “i want you to give ****** your ring.” she felt the prick in her heart immediately as she slid the two-toned ring off of her left ring finger. it was her favorite, most loved, cherished and enjoyed piece of jewelry.
turning to her new friend, she spoke. “father wants you to have my ring.” it was a holy moment as both women’s eyes filled with tears. they knew what it meant, even while seeing only a small fraction of what he wanted for them, with them.
it was a david and jonathan moment with strong women in the lead roles.
it should have been easy. it was not. after getting her momma reconnected with her stepsisters, she also re-engaged with them in the hopes of learning more about grandma.
she talked with the oldest of momma’s stepsisters, then with the youngest. it was great to visit and talk with them. yes, it was. but it did not provide any of the answers to her questions.
what was grandma like?
what was her personality? what were her hobbies? did she like music? horses? dogs or cats or both? did she bake or cook?
no one could really say. grandma had been ill and in hospital often. she was there more than she was home. her daughters didn’t really know her, either. there were a few photos of her left. she asked for copies to be sent to her but they never came.
was there any family resemblance?
did momma look like grandma? did she look like grandma? hmmm. another idea came to her. would it be possible to see grandma in the cloud of witnesses? could she, would she make herself known? could she share more about her life in a visitation? maybe. it was worth asking daddy god about.
he did have one answer for her. he told her one morning on her commute to work. in a brilliant movie reel playing in her mind, so many things became clear.
“your grandmother was a worshipper. she loved to sing.”