Back to my continuation of the conference...........On Friday night, (8-8-08)Amy and I went together to Life Center for the evening session of the conference. We had a great time talking together while waiting for worship to start. A friend of Amy's came up, and I had remembered meeting her at the last conference. She comes to Life Center a lot as a visitor and actually lives in Lancaster and attends a menonnite church. She asked for prayer as she continues to be a beacon amidst her church. She was so evidently in love with Jesus and willing to be hated in the midst of a very religious legalistic system of people. She kept saying , I just love Jesus and I love these people, and I want them to know His love!!! She shared of her trip to Lakeland and what God did in her families life there. She shared her testimony with her Mennonite church, and they were actually intrigued. (I always say, you just can't refute someone's testimony!!)
Anyway, worship started and again it was Julie Meyer leading. Worship was wonderful, exhilerating and very long, ha!! I wish I could remember all the songs we sang, but the truth is many of them were new to me. I do remember singing, "We will dance on the streets that are golden." Amy was delighted, as this song was one of her wedding songs!!! And so - WE DANCED!!! It was so fun to really really finally be dancing in church!!! At times I would just look around at all the other worshippers expressing their joy before the Lord, and it was a sweet sight to behold. Beautiful flags and banners of sheer and colorful fabrics were waving about!! People were dancing together! There were a few paintings being painted, one on canvas a lovely ocean scene and another done on fabric with random waves of color!! It really feels alive and electric in this place! No inhibited worshippers here!!
At one point Jim Goll came up and announced excitedly what time it was, it was 8:05. It was 8-8-08, a significant date, because 7 is the number of completion and 8 is the number of new beginnings. So to be 8-8-08, was quite significant! Triple 8's, 3 being the number of perfection. So at 8:05, five being the biblical number that represents grace, Jim came up to prophesy a bit, and declare we would celebrate at 8:08. So, 8:08 came and it was more glorious than New Years Eve!! The people of God were celebrating triple new beginnings!!! Julie Meyer also spontaneously sang a prophetic song about how all the prophecies that you have been given will come to pass. If you have a prophesy you have been waiting for to come to fruition, now is the time for it to come to pass. All things NEW, NEW, NEW!!!!
Anyhow, I don't think worship ever truly ended, it was continued on and off throughout the meeting, which I loved. But, after the main time of worship ended, Bonnie Chvada came up to take the offering for the ministry. She gave a powerful little message on giving, not your typical feel slightly required and a little guilty if you don't talk that you get from those still under an Old Covenant mindset. But one of sharing of the power behind genuine giving and sowing into what the Lord is doing. I won't go into all the detail of this time, but I do have to say, I hope to hear her speak in the future.
There were many facets of the evening that I won't bother to go into, but one moment I do want to highlight, because it was just too awesome to not include. It's stories like the one I am about to share that really make me wish I could find a church body like this to worship with. Jim Goll came up with his wife and daughter, I believe to announce Heidi. Anyway, before all of that, he honored the woman who had organized all the special dances. He shared how she had been a single mom of 7 kids for a long time and just got married a year ago. She then got his attention and asked to come up for a minute. She had wanted to share a word for them, and especially for Michel Ann. She proceeded to share about a billboard she had recently seen, I guess it was one of those new kind that constantly change screens. It was a scarlet backdrop with the date 8-8-08 in huge numbers and the 0 was a diamond ring. She actually saw it twice in a row and it impacted her so much that she asked the Lord if it was a sign or a word from him. The second time she saw it, she saw in the corner it said James Free. So naturally she thought of James Goll. She asked the Lord about this and he gave her a verse, Matthew 8:8. She asked someone to look it up and read it. Bonnie Chvada found it first and read, "But the centurion replied, "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only SAY THE WORD, and my servant will be healed." Now if you remember from my earlier post, Michel Ann Goll is stricken with cancer and very ill. This woman, I wish I could remember her name, continued to prophecy a bit, James wept, and the whole congregation got up on their feet shouting and proclaiming this word for Michel Ann. I saw Bonnie jumping up and down, Heidi too, and waving their arms toward her with such desire for this to be so! Then the whole church was standing arms outstretched toward Michel Ann, shouting "HEALED, HEALED, HEALED, HEALED!!!!" OH my, it was beautiful and powerful, and to me, this was church!!!! ( if you think of Michel Ann pray for her complete recovery.)
After that intense emotional moment Jim asked Heidi to come up, and he, his wife and daughter all hugged her and prayed for her. After they finished, Heidi couldn't stand, she was full of the Holy Spirit, and it took some time before she could begin to really minister. (yup Don, as you predicted.) It was quite glorious, to be in a place with absolutely NO formality and total freedom to be drunk in the Holy Spirit. Heidi eventually gained enough composure to start speaking, and she began to share stories. I suspect that is what she does most of the time when she speaks, and I just love it!! I think I will end my post for now, and continue on again in another post about the remainder of the evening...........