Travel Tips for a Terrific/Terrible Time / Prophetic Ponderings

So it begins.  Now, the question remains, what is it and for how long will it continue?

I’ve been blogging off and on (mostly off – with seasons of on) for 15 years now.  Add the four years of college where I wrote a weekly column and you’d think I’d have an idea of what I’m doing.

And you’d be … squirrel!

I love squirrels.

A little more gamey then chicken, but still good.

I was baptized in the Jordan River in Israel two weeks ago and during the baptism the ministers gave prophetic words over us.  At the time I was annoyed by the fish tickling my feet, the sun overheating my camera and that it was taking so long for each person to be baptized (about 10 minutes each).  Then when it was my turn my camera ran out of disk space and I nearly lost my cool … but I decided that throwing a fit would’ve been a little tacky and might influence the prophecies (“grow up you baby!”)

Needless to say, though that hasn’t stopped me yet, when it was my turn I was really blessed.  As they prophesied over me I kept expecting one of the fish to take off with my big toe.  To prevent this I started to squirm and move around.  The ministers must have thought I was getting filled with the spirit since my squirming seemed to get them excited about what God was doing.  All joking put aside until later, He was.

The problem with growing up Charismatic is that you see a lot of fakes.  Charlatans if you will.  Snake oil salesmen.  Wolves in polyester suits.  Cash cows.  “A face like the face of Robert Tilton, but without the horns.”  I’ve been prayed / pushed for many times.  I’m a stubborn SOBW (Son of a Beautiful Woman) and wouldn’t go down no matter how hard they would push.  If the Holy Spirit knocked me down, great, but I wasn’t going to let some man topple me like a domino so he could look good on TV (though it was only campus TV the principle was the same).

Prophecy, when people even bother with the greatest gift, has almost an air of psychic nonsense.  Just make the prophecy vague enough, judge reactions, follow the person being prophesied about and wa’la you have a minute maid prophet.

It sounds like I’m a skeptic and would shun all things supernatural.  The opposite is true.  I want the supernatural.  I want God to move, speak, and act.  I pray for the sick.  I expect to see eyes opened, limbs restored and the dead raised.  But I’m not going to give God a mulligan.  God doesn’t need a gimme.  I won’t cheapen His supernatural acts by giving him credit for the forgeries.

Speaking of meandering… The Jordan River.  Not much of a river really.  A member of our group named Joshua was very distressed to see how small and pathetic the Jordan River was.  While the baptisms were taking place we crossed it numerous times.  Kinda makes Joshua’s parting of the Jordan River seem rather trite.  In the past, they say, the river was much larger but increased irrigation has lowered the water level significantly.

<DUNK> So they baptized me and said about 10 minutes of prophecy over me.  One of the ministers knew something about me so my suspicion would be that he had used this to enlighten his prophecy over me.  The thing is the person who read my mail I’d just met a few days earlier and hadn’t talked to that much.  Later I interviewed others on our team and every one of them had been encouraged, strengthened and blessed by the experience.  Suffice it to say my curiosity was piqued in regards to prophecy and if I were a brave man I’d ask God for this gift.  I don’t know if challenging myself in this way will work, but we’ll see.  Or rather … it will.

Which in a very roundabout way leads me to the video I posted on Youtube today.  One of the prophesies was that I had a lot of discoveries, ideas and insights that I needed to share.  Share with my children, others and eventually the world.  Lord knows I like to talk, write and present things.  But up til now I’ve been very hesitant.  I’ve joked in the past about “my superior inferiority complex.”  While it was (and I think still is) funny, the truth is that embracing my neuroses undermines my confidence.  I’ve always envied people with confidence (my brother Sam, my wife Tamara and now my oldest son Nate) because they have something I need.

Now this prophecy gave me a boost.  And I’m going to act on it.  And I’m not going to second guess myself and waffle on my decision anymore.  Unless of course there is a good reason to …

<SLAP> Don’t worry I didn’t really slap myself, that would have been a little weird … and I only do REALLY weird.

My plan and intention is to produce and post another video on Youtube every week.  On the plane ride back I typed out a list of the some of my ideas for brief videos.  It was not a short list.  And knowing me, they won’t be brief videos.  But I shall try… I shall SUCCEED in posting 52 videos this next year and they will be around 5 minutes each.

I’ll also be restarting this blog, participating more on Facebook (unless its the ALS Ice Bucket challenge – don’t get me started on that since I’ll sound like Mr. Scrooge) and learning more about Youtube and how to properly promote, present and profit from participating in the periodic posting of positive ponderings.

Like any journey it starts with one step, and while my first step (the video Abby and I made before I left for Israel) may be a small one, much of the success of this venture won’t be how I start, but whether I keep going and how I end.  Being stubborn has always served me well in the perseverance department and judging from my track / cross country days, I’m a strong finisher.  True my dramatic finishes would see me passing half a dozen other runners and finishing a respectable (?) sixth place from last. But whose counting … besides the judges at the finish line and all the people asleep in the stands or under the hurdles.

I would say under the bleachers but I don’t think those students were sleeping.  They were Charismatic, as far as I could tell, since they believed in laying on of hands.

And yes, I’m a little mischievous.  I should just delete the last line but I found it funny so I’ll just cross it out and pretend like I meant to delete it. <insert diabolical laugh>

Well tomorrow starts my 14th year of teaching so I probably should get some sleep.  Until then check out the video that Abby and I made about Terrible Travel Tips.

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