Wednesday, December 23, 2015

December 24th

This is one of the most challenging blogs I have ever shared. It contains visions, dreams and encounters that are rich with layered meaning, and it is much longer than usual.

It doesn't necessarily have a Christmas theme, but there is one strong connection- that just as tomorrow we celebrate Jesus our Lord come into the world made manifest, so also this same Jesus who was born a baby in Bethlehem, will return in the clouds with glory, and He will stand upon this earth, and every eye shall behold Him and every knee will bow to Him, and everyone will openly confess Jesus as Lord, to the glory of Abba.

We do not know when He is coming, but as devoted servants and loving disciples, we watch for our redemption drawing nigh, staying in readiness to greet Him in joy as soon as He returns, no matter how late or far spent the night. We do this not in fear, but as an act of faith in Him, not knowing the day or the hour, but living in joyful expectation for His return while we do His work here in the world.

Beloved, Jesus has given Himself to us as a gift, and we have received Him. Now He sends us also into the world as a gift to others.

What I share in this blog is not for me alone and it is not about me. If it were so, I wouldn't be asked to share it. In these dreams and experiences, I am standing in as a symbol of something much larger than myself. With sincere affection as a sister in Jesus Christ, I am offering these to you. Take the hand of our Teacher and Master, Jesus Christ, our Prince of Peace, and trusting in Him always, may you go in peace to love and serve our Lord as He leads you.

October 17, 2015

Last night I had a dream. Keith and I were traveling somewhere and we had stopped in this place because we had run out of money and had had to take a job in order to build up our funds.

We had taken jobs in a restaurant. I was a waitress and we were gathered with the other staff in the dining room, waiting for the owner of the restaurant to bring us our pay check after a week’s work.

I noticed one of the waitresses in particular; she was there in a wheelchair. She looked almost like an elderly woman, frail but gentle. She had a deaf ear and there was a plug in it because it was in the process of being treated. She had had a temporary procedure, but she now needed the full treatment I wasn’t sure why she was in the wheelchair.

I knew that after she received her paycheck, she had to go to the hospital and this was her most urgent concern at the moment- what would happen and how it would go, and so she was sort of quietly waiting off on the side lines, lost in worried thought.

As I was leaning against the counter, I thought to myself, “You know what, I could just go over there and pray for her. I could just ask her if she wanted prayer, and if she did, I could pray for healing and if she’s healed, glory to God and if she isn’t, I’ll be humble and honest with her and apologize and trust God either way.”

That seemed to me not scary at all, so I walked over to her and knelt down by the wheel chair and I said to her, “Would you like me to pray for you?”

Her face was glowing; she had such a tender spirit, and she said, “I would love for you to pray for me!”

So I leaned forward and put my arms around her and as I did, I felt the warm and heavy anointing of Jesus Christ fall down on us both, and I opened my mouth to pray and my words felt like a stream of living gold, and I said, “Dear Jesus, I know that You love this woman so much and she is so precious to You and Your love for her is boundless and without end,” and the woman said, “Yes, Jesus, I love You, Jesus, I love You, Lord,” so I stopped praying so she could finish praying, then I went on. “Jesus, send Your loving, healing power down to wash through this precious woman of Yours and to release her and heal her and renew her through Your life as it flows through her right now, I pray in Jesus’ name...” I went on, sometimes stopping for her as she added prayers, so it was more like a prayer in duet than anything else.

Then I leaned back on my heels to see her face, which I could see up close. She didn’t say anything and she wasn’t meeting my eyes, her face was clear and calm like still waters and she was looking into the middle distance, her expression lost in some deeply personal introspection, and I thought to myself, “Oh dear, there was no healing and now she feels badly and doesn’t want to hurt my feelings by letting me know. Next time I do this, I’ll be sure to let the person know to be honest with me and that I won’t mind at all, so they don’t have to feel badly…”

Then my perspective changed and I was back at the counter and I was seeing the woman and she was talking to her coworkers and I was staring at her in growing amazement, because she was standing up. Not only was she standing, but her entire face was glowing, her cheeks warmly and naturally flushed with health and her hair was brown instead of white. She looked twenty years younger than before, but she seemed oblivious to this, as she was just enjoying the good company of her coworkers and friends, which whom she had worked a long time.

I was still lost in wonder at this- I couldn’t grasp the largeness of what I was seeing- that she had in fact been healed, not just in her ear, as she was having no difficult engaging in conversation, but in her entire person- when the manager of the restaurant came in with our checks, which he began to pass around.

He gave me my check and said something to me that I don’t remember, but it had to do with some small disagreement that I had had with him, but he was in effect admitting that I was right after all, but by that time, I couldn't even remember what the disagreement had been about.

I looked down at my check and I saw that he had written out the figure, one thousand and either fifty two dollars or fifty two cents- that part of the dream I’m not sure of, except that it was one thousand dollars plus five and two of something, either dollars or cents. Keith had made the exact same amount and as I looked at the checks, I realized we had made far over and above what we needed and could get back on the road again and I looked up and saw all the other coworkers also leaving, happy with their pay and I realized how important it was to them, how it enabled them to pay bills and buy gas and groceries and was a vital and foundational part of the their life, something that added to their personal dignity.

This dream was so vivid that I didn’t realize it was a dream until I woke up.

My verse today was: “I wait quietly before God, for my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my Rock and my Salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken.” Psalm 62:1-2

I pray this ever since seeing it the last time it was on the flip calendar. I realized that I have come full circle, only in much greater understanding and depth of perception.

October 25, 2015

Last night went to Jesus in the inner room and was thinking about how the disciples of John the Baptist came up to Him. I was in Jesus’ arms and thinking about this, and  I was saying His words slowly, because they were like honey- “What do you seek?” Jesus had asked, so I said this to Him, savoring His words.

“Rabbi, where are You staying?” they had replied.

“You said, Come and see,” I said to Jesus slowly, standing with Him in the beautiful white light and warmth that filled the room. “And they would see," I said to Him. "You would show them that You stay in the Father and they stay in You and You in them. That is what they would know at the end- that the place You stay is in them…"

And then for the pleasure of hearing the answer, I asked Him the question- "Where do You stay, Jesus?” I whispered to Him in overflowing love.

Right with you, was His gracious reply.

Listening to the fabric move in the breeze and faint beyond, the leaves in the wind, and the light, and the cool stone, all this but above all and enhanced by all was the warmth and complete safety of Jesus, the strength and life of Him, and the delight of leaning on Him and resting in perfect trust.

We knelt beside the stone fountain and looked into the largest, lower basin, the light shining down into the water and the water full of living things. Bees and dragonflies hovered over the plants and fish swam in the waters. Again, Jesus thanked me for the gift, and I remembered Him doing that before. “In whatever way I have been able to give it to You, You are welcome to it,” I had told Him.

Looking into the quiet waters, I thought of this passage:

“And the effect of righteousness will be peace [internal and external], and the result of righteousness will be quietness and confident trust forever.
“My people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, in safe dwellings, and in quiet resting-places.”
-Isaiah 32:17-18, AMPC

Homes are sacred spaces- places of safety, peace and quiet rest. Even more so, where God Himself makes His home in us and we in Him.

Outside the back deck, the swamp waters were murky and warm and I hadn’t been able to see down through it, and I realized the koi were in the basin of the fountain now, and not outside in that little pool, because the pool had disappeared in the rising, murky waters.

in my hands I held the clear and living water
nothing in that moment spilling over-
the dove rested
heart beating
in the palms of my hands
held up

I know your face illumined
and the whisper of your word
with the flutter of the curtain
hems moving in the wind

that room is sequestered in a ring
of silence and pastured ancient hills
and light

there the blundering tongue cannot begin
to frame the syllables
but the sealed heart can speak,
can wait like a lamb at Your feet

That which is most holy is sheltered in resting-
the result of righteousness, quietness
and trusting assurance forever in peaceful cloister.

October 27, 2015

(This is another of those experiences where I saw Jesus not in the inner room, but as though during His ministry on earth, and it must be understood in a symbolic way.)

Still wanting very much to be with Him all the time. Today I woke at five in morning and then went to Jesus where lately I have been seeing Him, which is in Bethany. And with Jesus the light in the sky was a pale, pale white at the horizon and I was walking down the road to Jerusalem with Him, hand in hand and He was hungry and I realized then it was because He had left the house early to pray, before anyone else was up and so hadn’t had breakfast.

It was cold and His breath made clouds in the air. The road was deeply rutted and hard underfoot and as we approached Jerusalem I could smell the bitter smoke from the city dump. We stood on the brow of a hill overlooking the city, smelling this harsh smell in the cold air, and He wrapped me in His coat.

I could see the city dump to the left of the road, taking up the whole of the valley on that side, and to the right, pale fields and between them at the end of the straight road and rising up was the steeply hilled city of Jerusalem, already awake and stirring, house over house over house and between them, narrow, winding streets.

Then we were in the city and it was jam packed, all the narrow roads full to overflowing with others come to the festival and it was really overwhelming with the towering buildings overhead and the maze of streets and the cry of the voices and the pushing and pulling of the crowds of strangers and pilgrims. I clung to Jesus’ hand but almost lost His hand and He pulled me to His side and kept me there and I put all my faith in Him to lead, because I had no idea where we were or where we were going.

Then I saw a door in the wall with a small, barred window. Through the door, we entered quiet walled inner space or room and it was the house where they were going to have Passover, only it was the lower rooms. I felt centered finally and calm after the chaos of the street, but it would be a long time until dinner and it was a long, strange kind of afternoon.

Jesus went into one of the back rooms and He threw Himself down on His face to pour out His heart in prayer to Abba and so I went shyly around the other downstairs rooms and found the lamb was in the house and alive still, which shocked me. I though for sure they must have already had it slaughtered in order to be ready on time, but it was alive and stumbling over the rugs in this heartbreaking way. It was so small, I couldn't understood how it would feed so many people.

Then it was time and Jesus went with measured, strong step up the stone stairs to the upper room, which I could see was glowing warmly amber and hushed quiet, but I couldn't see anymore.

November 3, 2015

In the early morning, I dreamed that I was pushing an elderly woman through an assisted living complex looking for a place to give her a shower. She was a dear old lady, but I couldn’t find any open facilities, so I had to go across to the other building, even though it was cold, but even in this other building, I couldn’t find any free places, because the staff were using them.

“I’m going to report you to not only your supervisor, but to the health department if you don’t immediately provide this woman with a place to shower,” I said to the shift supervisor.

After that, they resented and excluded me but the woman got her shower. Then I was at a staff meeting and my mother was holding it and she was announcing that Jesus- who also seemed to work there- was going to be holding a large, public meeting. This seemed to be terribly significant and everyone knew the significance but me.

Mom said, “And they are adding two new glass floors which Jesus Himself is building and they will hold the meeting there!” and everyone was very excited, but I was thinking, “Jesus is here!” And I was already going swiftly through the crowd toward the back where the elevator was and was in it.

It was rising when my Mom said lovingly, “Where’s Jenny?” Because apparently everyone already knew how much I loved Him and she couldn’t find me in the crowd and she looked up just in time to see my feet disappearing and laughed.

I knew she wasn’t offended, but understood perfectly and I went all the way up and realized, when I got to the top floor, that Jesus wasn’t there and I had hit the wrong button and what I wanted was the main lobby, where I had never been, because I realized that's where Jesus was (in order to meet those coming in- I understood that later.)

“I want the lobby,” I said to two others who had ridden up with me.

“We want to be here!” they exclaimed, and went out on that floor, which was a fascinating top floor with quite a view, but I didn’t get out. I looked for the lobby button, found it with profound relief and hit it firmly and with a stomach turning lurch, went back down and then it was smooth sailing and I knew I was going to find Jesus eventually, because I was determined and then I woke up and I was so disappointed that I had woken before I had seen Him in the dream.

I mentioned this to Him when I was praying and Jesus said, even when you’re with Me right now?

“Yes, even so,” I had to admit, because in the dream, I knew I was about to be in His immediate, full presence, finally. But I held to what Jesus said, that He was with me, so I reached out and He was there and I grabbed hold of Jesus firmly and I said to Him, “Now I have found You!” Then I finished praying.

November 20, 2015

As I was pushing Merissa in the stroller up and down the corridors of the P/X, I was remembering something which had happened there before, when I had been shopping for clothes. Two women were working in the racks, talking about current events and the mindless violence of them.

“It’s like the whole world’s gone crazy,” one woman remarked.

“You know why, it’s because He’s coming,” said the other woman wisely.

My whole spirit went up in flames of joy to hear Jesus referred to unexpectedly and even though I don't know if He is coming this year or a hundred years from now, I wanted to say, “Yes, yes, and isn’t it wonderful that He is coming! Jesus is coming!” Because it's simply wonderful that He is.

But I didn’t say anything, I just looked at the woman in joy, and she looked up and met my eyes and her eyes went wide, and then I dropped my gaze, because I felt so shy, because I was full to overflowing with love of Jesus and joy in Him.

“Yes, He’s coming,” the woman repeated, this time her voice serious. “And we gotta’ get ready!”

“Amen!” I thought to myself and went onward with my shopping.

There had been another time, before that, which I had regretted also, and that had been at Walmart, when I had been in the check-out line and the cashiers were talking together and for some reason, the cashier in my line was saying, “Praise Jesus!” in this exuberant way.

Each time she said, “Praise Jesus!” my spirit leapt up in flames and inwardly, I cried out, “Praise Him! Praise His holy name! Praise Jesus!” But I didn’t say it aloud, though I felt the anointing in the small space increase and increase in joy until both cashiers were laughing and throwing their hands in the air, their voices ringing out.

Even as I walked away, I regretted not openly joining in the praise, and so I said to myself the next time anything like that happened, I was going to join in, and I was thinking of all this at the P/X this week and keeping my eyes and ears peeled for any mention of the name of Jesus, and listening intently to Him for any instructions.

Well, I was waiting at Burger King to pick up our food, as Keith was still using crutches and unable to carry anything and was already at the table with Merissa. I had the drink cup and went to go get the drink before the food arrived, as it might be a little while, as the food court had just opened up. So I went over to the soda fountain and got some Gatorade and went looking for some lids, as I knew Merissa would be sharing our drink.

Two people were working there, restocking and cleaning the beverage area and the older woman said to the small, older man, in this loving, gentle voice, “Sweetheart, watch out, someone needs to get in there,” and I realized the smaller older man was probably handicapped in some way. He looked nervous and stepped out of the way, but I met his eye and smiled and his face relaxed and his eyes warmed and then I said cheerfully, as I reached for the lid, “I never can tell which one goes with which cup, but I think this is the right size.”

“Oh, no that’s too small,” said the woman, helpfully. She started to look here and there, but couldn’t find the right size lid. “You know what, I’m going to go over there and get you a different size cup,” she said after a moment.

“Oh, you needn’t trouble yourself,” I assured her, thinking that was way too much effort for a drink, but she insisted, so I followed her back over to Burger King where she was explaining to the cashier about the lid mishap. She wanted to give me a size large cup to match the only available lids.

“So you need a size large cup?” asked the young woman, producing one from under the counter, sounding uncertain.

“Yes, praise Jesus!” cried the older woman at the sight of the cup, and as usual, my whole spirit flared up in delight and I knew the moment had come, and I was on tip toes as it were and I felt exhilarated.

“But I have a size medium lid...” the cashier added, producing one.

“Praise Jesus!” I cried out in laughing delight, and the older woman turned to me immediately. I can’t describe very well what was happening, because I seemed to be in some haze of joy, and even though I don’t know if there really was light, I felt light headed with joy and dazzled by light.

“You took the words right out of my mouth!” she cried, laughing, overflowing with joy herself.

“I heard you the first time! I had to join you!” I explained.

The cashier was looking at us both in wonder, but not as if we were crazy, but as if she wanted to know what was really going on. Then the older woman, laughing, went on back to her work and I waited at the counter for my food and I was absolutely drunk on joy. From time to time, laughter filled me at the hilariousness of the presence and praise of Jesus flowing from such a small thing. I kept looking up at Him- it was actually the menu board, but I knew I was also looking right at Jesus' face in joyful surrender, because I knew He had planned it, and what could I do but accept it.

When the cashier came over with the food, she bent down behind the counter and as she did, I said, “Oh do you mind adding some barbecue sauce…” and as I was saying this, she came up carrying the sauce and looked at me and delight washed over my face as I was looking at her and I said, “Oh, you were, thank you so much!"

I remember distinctly the expression in her eyes, because they were wide and filled with wonder, but it was not a repelled wonder- it was not as if she were looking at me with distaste- she was looking at me as if there were something about me that was wondrous, and she was both drawn to it and in awe of it at the same time, and of course that something was the presence of Jesus.

As I went back to the table with the tray, I thought to myself, “There are so many people drunk in love with Jesus and they are right on the edge of bubbling over! They are all around!” It was like hidden, living geysers just walking around, right on the edge of spouting up into joy and life. They are working at Walmart and as custodians in food courts and who knows where else in humble places, wearing uniforms of service and they are alive with the joy of Jesus.

December 5, 2015

Was standing in front of Jesus, thinking through some of what I was going to share on my blog, and thinking of how Jesus would be speaking through them, wondering about that and was beginning to make assumptions about how He would speak to others, and I was checked by the Holy Spirit- my attention drawn back to Jesus and I let go immediately of the assumptions, dropping them like a hot potato.

“Only You,” I said in relief, leaning against Jesus, welcomed by His love. “Only You could wield the sword of Your words. Only You could lift the weight of it and wield the double edges of Your living word just as You will. I need only to rest in You and obey one step at a time, and all the rest is Yours to do.”

As I prayed, flooded and inundated with the overwhelming and sovereign presence of my Lord Jesus Christ, of His supremacy, His sacrifice of love- leaving heaven to hang on a cross in order that we might be with Him always- that we would be utterly lost without Him, that Jesus is Himself the Truth, the Way and the Life and the holy and only way to the Father and that He is the Lord of lords and King of kings and that the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory all are His and before Him, there is no other god and everything belongs to Him and goes back to Him and I am in His service and belong to Him, and everything that I need is found in Him and everything I do is for Him and His glory and I will receive the Lord Jesus Christ Himself as my only and full reward, nor do I want one single other thing but Him, and to please Him and to serve Him and to know Him, which is better than life, and all the savor of it.

(Prayer based on Philippians 1:9-11, AMPC)
Now I am praying this to You, Jesus- present, living and sovereign Savior, the Word of God made manifest, Jesus of Nazareth, born in Bethlehem, crucified on Calvary and on the third day, risen in glory, sitting now at the right hand of God- Beloved Lord, this is my request of You-

That all of our love may abound yet more and more
and extend to its fullest development in living knowledge of You, Lord Jesus
and all keen insight into Your heart and Your will-

That all of our love all together may display itself
in greater depth of acquaintance with You, Jesus Christ,
and more comprehensive discernment of Your words and Your will-

So that we may all together surely learn to sense what is vital to You,
and approve and prize what is excellent
and of real value-

able to recognize the highest and best,
taking up our cross and following You,
and distinguishing the moral differences

through You, the Tree of Eternal Life

So that we might all together be untainted by the world's lies and follies,
and pure of heart before You,

and unerring by the guidance of Your Holy Spirit,
and blameless before You in love-

That with sincere and open hearts before others
and before You, Lord Jesus,
and certain in You,
and unsullied by any lie or lesser thing than You-

Beloved and present Lord Jesus, as I do each time,
I am asking You this as I am looking right at You-
Lord Jesus, in love,
I am asking You, according to Your holy name
and by the love You demonstrated on the cross,
as You opened Your arms to the crossbeam

and Your hands to the nails
and forgave,
I am asking You, Jesus-

That we may all together approach Your Day as You approach us,
that we walk, not stumbling nor causing others to stumble,
but caring for one another,
long suffering, patient and kind,
laying down our lives for one another
as we come forward together now,
upon the straight and narrow way
that You opened for us-

May we all abound in and be filled with the fruits of righteousness-

of right standing with God and right doing,
which come through Jesus Christ the Anointed One,
to the honor and praise of God-
that His glory may be both manifested and recognized.