Sunday, August 05, 2007

Hocus Pocus?

Yesterday I went to the Farmer's Market with my parents, as we were walking along my mom told me that she and her friend, Sallye, had made reservations in the Prophecy rooms at IHOP (prayer, not pancakes) in Kansas City for that afternoon. My mom is a great fan of IHOP, and other things I find questionable, like Benny Hinn and Joel Osteen. But I have heard good things about IHOP and I wanted to spend time with my parents before we move so I decided to go, I though at least I can check this place out for myself.
I understand the motive to have a place of 24-7 prayer and worship, because we serve a God who deserves constant praise, but I found that idea of making reservations to be prophesied over kind of sketchy. Our appointments were at 4pm so we left at 12:30 and arrived just in time. We went and signed in and were given stickers with our names on them and ushered into a waiting room. As I sat, waiting to be called into the "Prophecy Room", I tried to quiet my heart and remove all the preemptive judgment that I'm prone to form and hold onto as if my life depended on it. As I was sitting there I thought of the often used Biblical phrase of "a company of prophets" throughout the Old Testament, especially in II Kings there are companies of prophets, I don't know exactly what this meant, but I did think that this company of prophets were probably the "real thing" and they traveled around in a group and people came to them and received prophetic words. So really this group I'd just driven 3 1/2 hours to see weren't the first group of people gathered together saying they could prophecy.
After a few minutes we were taken to the Prophecy Room. All the chairs were set up in pairs with one empty chair and one with a little tape recorder in it. Each person sat in an empty chair and a man that couldn't have been much older than me told us that people who felt like they should pray or talk to us would come and sit in the other chair and talk into the tape recorder so we could take our prophecy home (yeah, seemed a little weird to me), he went on to say that their view of prophecy went along with I Corinthians 13, that they only spoke words of life and encouragement, no one was going to be judged or called out for some sin they'd committed. I sat for a minute, trying not to strain to listen to what was being said to other people, and then a guy came and sat next to me and started talking into my tape recorder. He was very nice and said some things that were helpful about faith, but nothing monumental. Moving along, a woman came and prayed for me, again, very encouraging. Then another young woman came and sat next to me. She said she'd been sitting somewhere praying and she felt like God told her to tell me "the journey's long end", at which point I completely broke down and start to cry. She went on to tell me that I've been on a journey of searching for love and truth, and that it has been a hard journey, but that the Lord has been with me the whole time and that I've been faithful to journey with Him. She told me that it's coming to an end and a new phase is on the horizon. Explanation- for the last 2 years or so, since I went to India the first time, I've struggled and searched through doubts about God's goodness, justice, and truth. This has been a hard journey, and this spring at the Grove's women's retreat God showed me the answerers to some of these questions I've struggled with and told me that he is going to heal the hurts and doubts that I've had, and that I'm coming to the end of this search for truth about all the shit I saw and experienced in India and America. - Immediately after another woman sat down next to me and told me that I wanted to serve God and do exceptional things for him, something really outside the box. And she said that God wanted me to know that even though I'm not there and doing yet He is pleased with me for wanting to do this and having answered yes to his call. She told me that even though I'm in a time of waiting and preparation right now God is pleased and loves me just as much now as he will when I'm fully in that calling. She finished my telling me that as she prayed for me the verse "blessed are the feet of those who bring good news" (Romans 10.15) came to her and that my feet are blessed, because they will bring good news, and I will go. Explanation- do I even need to give one? Let's see, India, women in the sex trade, my desire to go right now but it's not God's time yet. I can't describe how encouraging it was to hear these things. Oh, and that I have loved this verse and prayed that my feet would bring God's peace and justice, I've even considered getting it tattooed on my feet.

So, are making appointments to be prophesied over hocus pocus? You decide, but I've been convinced.


Liz said...

Wow! Thank you so much for sharing that with us... I had two cousins do internships at the IHOP, and they both left changed. Very cool!

Stu said...

That is an awesome story Kristen. I love it when God finds us and loves on us.

On a serious note, which syrup flavor did you go with while there?

Schellhase said...

Kristen, I was getting on your blog to offer another - this time serious - suggestion for your blog title. I was going to suggest "In Sickness and In Health," which keeps the marriage theme, has a nice resonance to it, and suggests that you'll be posting about the good and bad things that happen in your life. That said, I think there are some gems of titles in this post (which, parenthetically, I loved reading). Two more possibilities: "The Journey's Long End" and "How Beautiful the Feet that Bring Good News."

Liz said...

I also like "The Journey's Long End"