Harp and Story

Travel Journal 2018 Finally! A Break from the Storms

Greetings from Iowa! It’s been stormy day after day, but we finally got a bit of a break; a couple of afternoons ago we went for a bike ride and this morning we finally got the kayaks into the lake!thumbnail

Living in California for most of my adult life and Steve a native Californian, we often get asked about earthquakes, as in; “Aren’t you afraid of earthquakes?” We shrug our shoulders and say, “it’s part and parcel of living in an earthquake zone, you deal with it.”

We have been settled in a sweet, little county park in Rodney, Iowa for almost 3 weeks and we ask the Iowa natives, “don’t you worry about tornadoes?” They shrug their shoulders and say, “not really, it’s part and parcel of living in this part of the country.” So there you go, each region seems to have it’s particular nemesis that people have learned to live with! I, for one, when the rain is pounding, the wind is whipping the trees around, the clouds are black and swirly, the thunder is a continuous rumble, the lightning is one amazing flash after the other, and the trailer is rocking; I’m thinking, maybe, I would prefer earthquakes!DSC_6018

thumbnail (1)A question for you: Does YHVH orchestrate severe weather to test you; to see if you will call out to Him for protection or maybe just see if you will trust Him to keep you in the midst of the storm? Isn’t that what happened to the disciples in the story found in Mark 4:37-41,  “And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling.  But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”
And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.  He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?”
And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?” DSC_6029

“Trust Me, Believe Me, Know that I will never leave you or forsake you,” Yashua says to us. What is it in each of us that keeps this absolute assurance of Yashua from being more than a nice thought in our mind, instead of the intimacy of KNOWING settled deep in our heart that Yashua is always with us? If our heart and our mind do not line up in agreement then we are what James describes in chapter 1:5, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

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Finally some good weather! Took a paddle around the lake at Peter’s Park.

Dr. Jim Wilder of LifeModelWorks.org, Dr. Karl Lehman and his wife Charlotte of Immanuel Approach, and Chris and Jen Coursey of Thrive Today have answers that will help you synchronize your mind and your heart. (This is also what Steve and I are sharing this year.)

Be blessed in your journey to Wholeness and Holiness in Yashua!

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Travel Journal 2018 Whew! Exciting, but Exhausted!!

 

Proclaim Music Festival was a smashing success! A wide variety of music groups gave outstanding performances among them were Hannah Dota, Wrestling Angels, Exodus Road, Mason Clover, Shawna Rae, Dan Grieve, Zachary Bruno, Praises for Yahweh and Sandy DeLapp and family. Our hats are off to these awesome musicians! And YES! Steve and I were the Grandma and Grandpa of the group! We were humbled and honored to have a place on the stage with all of these very talented musicians. (Warning, run-on sentence ahead!) There was something about being out in the middle of America, surrounded on all sides by miles of corn and soybean fields, worshiping YHVH with all our hearts all the while contending with  blazing sun, or pouring rain, flies that bite and a varied assortment of other biting insects, hassling porta potties and the always, (it seems), wind; but through it all the people  shared with happy and rejoicing hearts, and we all had an awesome time together despite all the minor irritants — it was quite an inspiring weekend!

Thank you to the Johnks for lending the use of their farm, talents and energies to keep us all well fed and our every need of assistance met with cheerfulness and a servant’s heart! And everyone else who volunteered in numerous ways spending countless hours making sure all the bases were covered! And a HUGE thank you to Shawna Dose for carrying this vision from YHVH to completion (for this one anyway, we know there is more to come!). Steve and I appreciate and love you all!

The day started at 9:00 a.m. and went with different groups presenting until campfire time around 10:00 p.m. Any and all musicians could join the campfire band and jam the night away — or as long as they could stay awake! Steve hosted the first campfire, but didn’t quite make it to midnight — there were younger ones who dropped out before he did though!!

We had two time slots; Friday morning, first thing at 9:00 and the Shabbat afternoon slot at 2:00. Steve played several of his Psalm compositions and I told a story each time; The Boy’s Lunch and The Rich Ruler’s Agony. It was interesting during the Artist’s Q & A Sunday afternoon that a person in the audience asked how we all had become Artists; when it was my turn to answer I said, “I am the odd duck in this gathering for I don’t sing or play an instrument, but I tell stories. For years and years I have begged Abba to gift me with a voice that could sing — (I think my pleading went something like this, let me sing like Sondra Beam!) Anyway, a while ago when I was in this pleading mode YHVH spoke to my heart and said, “I gave you a voice to tell stories and that is a different kind of voice than someone who sings.” I still would love to sing like Sondra, but I don’t beg and plead for it anymore; YHVH’s answer satisfied me and I am now content with what I have been given! (Maybe in the Earth made new I will be able to sing like Sondra! Until then I’m good!)

Php 4:11-13, “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”

 

 

Travel Journal 2018 Oh My! On the Way to Proclaim Music Fest

It’s been an interesting few days! On the way to Iowa for the Proclaim Music Fest, YHVH definitely delivered us from a near catastrophic accident. Traveling at highway speeds traffic suddenly came to a complete standstill as an extra-wide load did an unexpected maneuver causing both lanes to be blocked. Steve swerved to avoid crashing into the cars in front of us and then jammed on the brakes to avoid hitting the semi we now found ourselves behind all the while trying to get out of the way of another semi barreling down on us from the other lane. We all managed to come to a stop without anyone hitting anyone else, but it was close. Thank you Abba for delivering us from danger!

When we stopped for the night and opened up the trailer it was a jumble inside with over-turned chairs and contents spilled from open cupboard doors strewn all over the place.  The bathroom was hit the worst though. The latch on the shower doors apparently came unlatched and one of the three sliding doors shattered with safety glass thrown all over the place.

This morning maintenance was mowing at the campground where we are staying and one of their mowers picked up a rock and shattered the back sliding window of our truck with it! So, we are thinking that Proclaim Music Fest is going to be quite an event to have this much resistance going on. And I’m just sharing what’s happening with us!

Thunder storms are in the forecast with hail, damaging winds, and heavy rain; we got a taste of that last evening. The wind came up pretty fierce and the clouds were very dark and threatening; thunder was a continuous rumble and the constant flashing of lightning made the dark sky bright with light; so we stepped outside and prayed that YHVH would part the storm and have it pass around us and He did. Almost immediately the wind died down and the storm clouds drifted off to the east and south of us. The thunder continued to rumble and the lightning kept flashing all around us, but the storm passed us by. We pray that this pattern of YHVH’s Grace and Protection continue throughout the Proclaim Music Fest!

Anyway, to leave on a good note; here is another collage of our great Sunday at the Blue Sky Winery in southern Illinois.thumbnail (13)

Travel Journal 2018 Two Wineries and A Walk in the Woods

Traveling from Paducah, Kentucky to Kansas City, Missouri, yesterday, we were flipping through the radio stations trying to find something worth listening to for a change of pace when we happened onto a Christian station. The speaker seemed to be holding forth in an interesting manner so we stopped our channel surfing to listen for a bit to see if we could discover what point he was making. We didn’t have to listen too long before we heard him say, “We were created by God for service.” Now I think most people who consider themselves believers in Jesus would agree with him, but I don’t and I am a Believer and Follower of my Savior Yashua.

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We were created by YHVH for relationship out of which service does flow. Service, first, has rarely been known to create, build or strengthen relationship. This is like putting the proverbial cart before the horse! Gen 3:8-9 tells us that the YHVH Elohim came walking in the garden in the cool of the day, calling to the man and woman, and said to him, “Where are you?” And we see YHVH calling us into relationship again in Exo 19:4-5 by declaring, “You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine…”

If we, as believers in Yashua, try to serve outside of a personal relationship with Yashua we will become what Ferne Clyffe State Parkthe apostle Paul describes in 1Cor 13:1-3 as clanging cymbals and noisy gongs. “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to removeDSC_5862 mountains, but have not love, I am

 

nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.”

Yashua says to His bride in Mark 6:31, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going,  and they had no leisure even to eat.

DSC_5854My paraphrase, “come spend some timDSC_5873e with Me — just you and me!”

Staying relational with Yashua keeps our “cup” full. Serving from an empty cup is fraught with stumbling and hardship. Take time to “come apart and rest awhile” — your soul will be refreshed and the fruits of the Holy Spirit; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control — will, “Out of our heart cause rivers of living water to flow.”

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In our “coming away” Sunday retreat relationships with friends and each other were strengthened. Thank you, sweet friends, for “coming away and resting awhile” with us!