Journey to Micro-Church – #2

Black_elkHoF Black Elk > Oglala Sioux Medicine man.

“But now that I can see it all as from a lonely hilltop, I know it was the story of a mighty vision given to a man to weak to use it;…”

As I shared in episode #1 the great vision set before me, my mountain to climb in my old age, I so feel the words of this Indian wise man. I am so excited about the growing move of God in this spiritual wave we have given a label of “Micro-Church”. I see a growing wave still far out at sea but rolling this way, and I want to be a part of it! It’s building as it rolls. It’s growing into a fresh move of God. It can be called a 2nd Reformation for surely that is how it feels to us who have become sickened with a prosperity message, a “king theology”, and traditions of man! We’re coming out!

But at the age of almost 64, how much of this wave can I still ride? Is this a vision given to a man to weak? And yet, I have to believe, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE WITH GOD!

As I write these words we just got very bad news on my sister who is three years younger than I. It was only supposed to be one artery 70% blocked. A simple stint was supposed to fix it. She would be out of hospital next day. But as we drove to visit her and celebrate a successful procedure, my phone rang. Her husband gave me the new report. 5 blockages! Main artery 90%. Another artery 70%. Transferring to a different hospital. Major open heart surgery. We wait for a doctor and surgery date.

I’ve been aware my whole life how heart disease, diabetes, and colitis runs in my family tree in a big way. We do seem to escape the “C” word for the most part. My only sibling developed the type 1 diabetes very young. And now the heart disease. I’ve had the colitis most my life, but very mild compared to my mom. Still… our days are numbered and how well we know. Most my grandparents died in their sixties. We do not live in denial, but we trust God in all things. So yes, at my age the vision God has given me looks quite large, like a huge mountain, but life would be so much less interesting without it!

I was 61 as I hiked that mountain path that day, the one now called Black Elk Trail, and I didn’t even know who he was, but I knew I was going to find out. I had been 41 when I hiked it before, twenty years ago, and believe me, I noticed a slight difference, but the joy was just as great!

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It was just me and the Lord that whole day. I asked him how his Church had become such a place about money, and more business like than family oriented, when He had been so against hoarding money, and was totally non-materialistic! How do rich pastors preach from luxurious platforms about the man who had nothing, and called us to lay aside our kingship for a time, and be servants!? To live a life rich in love and sacrifice! How do we justify all this? I could make no sense of it.

I hiked all the way up Black Elk Trail to that small mountain fortress at the top. I was there earlier than the normal tourist season and had the whole place to myself. The weather was awesome! It was a shifting swirling thing! Bright sunshine and warmth for a few minutes, then clouds and snow blowing for a few! It was totally inspiring as I ate my food at the top, shared some of it with 2 ground squirrels and a Jaybird of some sort. And God spoke to me as only he does, and gave me a strange phrase: “The path of the white feather.” I have kept those words in my heart ever since. I pondered those words as the elements shifted back and forth around me.

I spent an hour or so at the top. Offered up prayer and worship. Came down out of the mountain and drove back to town where I found an old bookstore. They had a very nice copy of “Black Elk Speaks”. I was very excited as I bought it!

When I got back to the hotel I did not waste any time opening it up, and soon found this man before my time, speaking of the “darkness in men’s eyes”. I was amazed at how simple and true his words were, and wondered why our preachers today seem to lack that? The words of Jesus are simple and true, too. The path of the white feather. I had come to South Dakota to get away in nature, seek simplicity, hear God, and God was showing me a path I would never leave.

I may have left the Black Hills, but my feet had been set to a spiritual path leading to a move of God I was unaware of. Little have I known. (To be continued.)

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II Samuel 21:22 – 22:4

20170429_143623These four were born to the giant in Gath, (Goliath), and fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants. And David spake unto the Lord the words of this song in the day that the Lord delivered him out of the hand of all his enemies, and out of the hand of Saul: And he said, The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my savior; thou savest me from violence. I will call on the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from my enemies.”

I did not know it that day, but I have come to realize an important part of God’s message through me is the misguided effects of what I call King Theology. What are the odds that a very special marker fell between the pages of scripture speaking of God as my rock, my fortress, my high tower, while we were in such a high place surrounded by rock fortresses?

How my eyes fell on the last verse of chapter 21, and the beginning verses of 22, I cannot explain other than God. They were not highlighted or marked in anyway, but my eyes went straight to those verses when I opened the page. But those verses mean so much more than a high and rocky fortress to me, especially relating to what I had just come out of.

These verses specifically said David was delivered out of the hand of all his enemies “AND” the hand of Saul…”KING” Saul. David did not consider King Saul his enemy, even though Saul was trying to kill him. David’s heart broke over the death of King Saul and his son, Jonathon. Jonathon was David’s closest and most cherished friend. And yet the scripture is specific to both list David’s enemies and also King Saul. God had delivered him out of two very different kinds of threats.

As a spiritual warrior, and not just someone who sits on the side bench of the battleground, we all now what it is like to have enemies of all sorts. Our enemy will use whatever means to stop the will of God in us. It can be finances, health, people, lies, demons, and circumstances of all sorts; but for David, King Saul and his son, Jonathon, was a very complicated issue. Now God seemed to be speaking these scriptures to me, on this second day of our quest, in the high place of Bear Butte. What did it mean?

I believe God was saying no enemy would be able to stand before me as I undertook the coming vision, the development of a school in the wilderness. God would be my rock fortress and my high tower of refuge. Of course this is very good news! But it was the other part that had me in such amazement and deep contemplation. How did God know? How did he manage to speak so specifically to my “weakness” in scriptures written thousands of years ago, and then guide me to land on them with my eyes in this moment?

Not to go into too many details, but, my best friend of over forty years had been one of the main reasons I ended up at the church where I lost my name. I had always thought we were meant to have a ministry together, and I had been very slow to give up that idea, because we were more than ordinary friends. We were comrades.

Looking back from this high place I could see how this church, and perhaps my friend too, had a King Theology, of which I could not fit into or agree with. This path was doomed from the beginning, and there I was trying to make it work. Now I could see God was listing this as part of what I was delivered out of. How could he find such a list…describing my current physical environment and location…two very specific false paths that had been revealed…and land me on those scriptures at this very moment and place in time? Wowwww.

My first warning light at this church was when I first started going there. Through my friend I had a quick connection to important people, including the Pastor. The Pastor became interested in a teaching I had put together about emphasizing our Priesthood over Kingship. He asked permission to preach it and I agreed. I felt honored, and for the next three weeks he was doing an excellent job of preaching it, until the congregation began complaining and attendance dropping. Many there felt they could not identify with the priesthood aspect of our birth in Christ, unless it included King Theology.

On the fourth week the Pastor made a switch and preached the King-side of the equation, as falsely translated in the King James version of the Bible. Details of this teaching can be found under my menu button: “VISION”. A red light went off in my spirit that very day, but it was still too early to say for sure, so I continued forward with the best of hopes. As I did, I ran into more and more church “political correctness”, which we would call church government.

David was delivered out of “heathen” ungodly enemies. He was also delivered out of the hands of his government, as in King Saul, and he was separated from his good friend, when Jonathon died. At least three specific things God delivered him out of, and I had just come through a season of all three of those things, which had brought me to such a spiritual state of which I had lost all vision, and my sense of who I was. All I had left was the sacred fire still burning in my belly, and so I had taken my vacation time and decided I would seek God, to find my purpose again. A new vision, for I had surely wrecked the previous one.

I could look back and see exactly where that other vision died. I could see where I switched to a different path, began to ride a different horse, in order to obey the leading of the Pastor, or the “House Vision”, they might say.

My heart was sad when I looked back. It still gets sad when I look back even today. But the new vision is actually similar, only in a different location. We are establishing a “House of H.O.P.E.”, a House of Prayer Everyday.

The specificity of these scriptures, and the card that guided me to them, (The Eagle Huntress), still amazes me to this day. If I had any doubt God was speaking, those doubts could not stand against the overwhelming odds of these things ever happening. I had been through a lot. I was at a place of doubting myself in every way. I can only believe God knew I needed some strong evidence I was still hearing Him.

There is a language that is personal between you and God. He knows what different things mean to “you”. He can use those things to get your attention if you seek him. He can confirm things in ways no one else can know.

I tied a prayer cloth to a tree for my wife and I that day, a bright red bandana. It blows in the winds of South Dakota, high on Bear Butte at this very moment.

Turtle Faith Lady barely managed to get down from the high places before dark. I was actually worried if we were going to make it. We were the last to leave there, and a huge male Bison crossed our path as we were leaving, a symbol of power, strength, endurance, and abundance. God was speaking, and I was doing my best to listen and properly interpret. Knowledge is not enlightenment. Truth is enlightenment.

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Our bandana flies from that little tree you see at the point. Yes, that one by itself, way out there.

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