Operation Bucharest -- Conference Kickoff
This is a brief bit of technical information: I thought I would tell you that I am somewhat limited with all of the video clips. They have to be less than 100 megabytes to fit on Godtube so that is the reason that they are usually less than a minute. Also the internet connection speed here is a little slower and it takes a loooooonnnnnnnggggggg time to get them uploaded. I am going to work a little harder to figure out exactly how many minutes of video that I can upload for you. I am telling you or warning you that you will want to have a room by yourself for all of the videos from today. They are incredibly powerful!!!!!!! The reason the video image is shaking in some of them was because it is extremely difficult to video and cry at the same time.
Everyone is moving very slowly today. There has been very little rest for the weary. I would guess that those who have been on prayer walks the previous two days have probably walked at least 10 miles or more.
It is easy to see some of the spiritual warfare that Sister Rodenbush mentioned in
I discovered Brother Patterson’s ailments at 6:30 AM when Brother Charlie Joyner (Charlie and Brother Patterson are rooming together) knocked on my door and told me that he and Brother Jay were going to walk down to the FARMACIE and purchase some Tylenol and other flu remedies for Brother Patterson. It was then that I found out that Brother Patterson had been sick for most of the night.
He slept through breakfast and arrived at the morning service when Brother Steve Willoughby, missionary to
Prior to the pre-conference service, fire practice was once again held for the choir. Before they started, I felt a need to address our gang because I felt that the enemy is doing his very best to disrupt our efforts with sickness and other matters. We need the prayers of those who are reading this blog to continue in a strong way.
After choir practice, Brother Willoughby began his session on Spiritual Midwifery which was an excellent time of instruction about working with those praying in the altar. I was unable to take notes in this session because I was too busy trying to manage a digital camera and camcorder. However, we are going to see if we can get to the notes.
There was a strong spirit of liberty, faith, and worship that attended this session. At the end Brother Mike Patterson led us in prayer along with Brother George Craft who is a missionary although I am unsure of his field. As Brother Craft prayed, he directed us to move all throughout the building and lay hands on walls, doorways, chairs, platform, and the entire sanctuary. It was pretty incredible, as you will note on the video clips!!!
After all of the prayer, we ran to our rooms and grabbed passports, Metro tickets, bottled water, and snack things so we could hit the streets. Today instead of just prayer walking and passing out flyers we were going to conduct some street services. We also took an electronic keyboard and snare drum with us. At the first stop in front of the Metro entry it did not take long to generate some excitement. While we were setting up, there were four boys about 12 to 16 and they begin giving Justin Ward a hard time. I could not tell what they were saying but the tone of their voice and body language let me know that it could not be good. The ringleader was loud and sarcastic and would stand off about 10 feet away from our group and point, shout, and wave to all of the people who were in transit from the Metro. As one of the guys (I think either Michael Joyner or Jeremy McCoy) was setting up the snare drum, the ringleader came over and started banging his hand on the drum. I noticed that whoever that was setting up the drum was taken aback by this and Justin Ward walked over and said something sharply to the ringleader and he retreated back to his band. In the video clip, the ringleader is the little guy in the red shirt.
As they begin singing a crowd of about 30 or 35 stopped walking to hear what they were singing (Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes, Yes, Lord, Amen!) and Brother John Cureton and I got busy passing out flyers while we had a concentrated crowd. The most frustrating thing of all is the language barrier.
The boys who were making loud comments were caught off guard by how well the group could sing and it put a stifling effect on them. I will say that as soon as these fellows came up and started hard-timing us, I launched into the prayer mode that Sister Rodenbush had taught us in
As we moved further down the street you could sense the turn in the neighborhood toward those who fit into the category of the “have nots.” A lot of poverty surrounded us but again another crowd gathered up when they started singing. We passed out flyers in huge doses while the singing was going on.
The choir would sing at two more spots before we got on the Metro and then we would have to walk another mile or so back to the conference center. Some very interesting things happened while we were passing out flyers.
You are all well aware of my affection for books. I found a fantastic bookstore on the way to another singing point. The owner of the shop even tried to talk to me but I could not understand him and he could not understand me either. His car is his "shop." It also appears to me that he has been doing what I have been doing. . . . Reading books late at night and eating entire bags of BBQ Potato Chips and drinking Dr. Pepper.
First when someone would want to talk to us we would have to run down a translator. One lady that they found begin to talk about how that she was a Christian of another denomination and that she lived in a Middle Eastern country right in the very heart of Islam. She related that she had to be undercover with it when she was in her country but that when she traveled abroad she always tried to find a place to worship in. She told Justin Ward that she was intending on being in attendance at the conference tonight. I pray that God will fill her with the Holy Ghost.
Another lady met Teresa and began to explain to her in very limited English that her daughter was in the process of becoming a surgeon. She had already been to school for six years and was apparently about to begin her surgical residency. Teresa encouraged her to come to the conference also.
After we finished the street services we descended into the Metro tunnel. While we were punching our cards to go through, I saw a small kid dart under the turnstile and then begin digging in the trash. He had a bag that he pulled out of the garbage and blew air into it and began sniffing the bag after he filled it with air. He was apparently was sniffing something in an attempt to get high. He also had a cigarette butt over his ear that he had found somewhere and was waiting to smoke it a little later.
As he started doing this two other boys materialized around him who would turn out to be his brothers. All three of these boys ranged in age from probably 6 to 10. Justin Ward began talking to them in Romanian and we discovered that they were street kids that were gypsies. They had no parents and they only periodically would go and see their grandmother. Every thing that they get to eat and wear apparently comes from begging and stealing. Justin Ward offered to get them something to eat if they would come to the conference. However, after he bought them something at the sandwich shop they took off and haven’t been seen since. I again realized how blessed that we are to live in
Lunch today resembled the chicken “sandwich” that we got on the flight from Frankfurt to
We were all in place pretty much by 5:45 PM. The ushers, book table attendants, musicians, and all were ready to roll. Earlier today during Brother Willoughby’s session, I noticed a booth going up in the back that had two or three booths and each booth was equipped with a mic and transmitter. The reason that this is in place is for the translators to sit in. The translators wear headphones and they all understand English. As the service carries on they translate it into different languages for those who are wearing the headsets in the congregation. Tonight there were three different translations going on. One lady was translating Russian, another Serbian, and another Slovakian (I think) and Brother Mike Patterson translated the Romanian. He did an incredible job! He and Brother Willoughby worked very well together! (The picture you see is Jeremy passing out the headphones to the people who need a different translator than Romanian.)
During the pre-service, Sister Benton from
After Sister Benton spoke, Brother John Cureton did very well giving a testimony that required for him to work through a translator, Justin Ward. He told us tonight after the service that it was very difficult to keep your train of thought while working through the translator. As you will see, he did very well.
Brother Roger Buckland is the area missions supervisor and he ran the service with Brother Mike Patterson translating into Romanian.
A Serbian youth choir sang and it was very powerful!
This was followed by the
Then Brother Willoughby preached a fantastic message about faith and miracles. Tonight I did not operate with my pen and notebook but I do remember his text coming from Mark 2. Very, very powerful!!! He also used some props with Jay Lewis, John Cureton, Michael Joyner, and Jeremy McCoy carrying him up to the roof top for his healing.
After the faith-building preaching, Brother Willoughby then opened the altars for those who needed healing. One American was healed and then a Romanian lady was healed and that broke the dam when she gave the testimony through Brother Mike. Brother Willoughby asked the ministers and the
We stretched our arms and hands out over them and prayed. I know that all of the
Finally, Nathan Harrelson and Jay Lewis were directed to count the people who were there tonight and they counted around 215 people.
All of your comments are greatly encouraging and have helped motivate me to write even when I have been very tired. . . . . Thanks a bunch. . . .