Posts Tagged With: Religion

“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Seventeen

The Encounter III > How big is your Gotham? Your personal assignment from God. Is it just your family? I have seen cases where that in itself might be all a person could do, but for most of us, God expects something more. And how do we go about answering that call? Do we give our all, or… something much less…something less sacrificial… something much more “man-made than God-made”. What is the secret side of our Priesthood? What is God’s Covering, his Cloaking, his Anointing? What does it mean to be a “caped crusader” for God? Batman had his secret side, and if I’m a proper Priest of God, so do I.

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in secret… And when you pray…go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in secret… And when you fast… don’t make it obvious… then no one will notice you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in secret…and your Father who sees everything, will reward you. (Excerpts of Matthew 6: 1-18)

Don had a smile on his face as he cruised around the parking lot in his 97 Honda Civic. What a story this car could tell. Everything from the white rear bumper on a silver-gray car, to the rumpled hood, the soldered gas tank, the repaired brake lines, the fact the car sat for three years and the alternator was locked up when he started it. Soaking it with WD40 and forcing it to turn actually worked, and somehow he now had this great job as a “Watchman”, a guard, cruising around a parking lot in a bad area of town, keeping order, protecting, while a small yellow bubble light flashed repeatedly on the roof of his silver-gray car. In some respects it was ridiculous, but in others it was awesome.

His prayers were being answered. So much was happening! When he hired on as part-time, working the evening shift, who could have known the day shift guy would suddenly, without warning, quit! And he was offered the full-time, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday position. God knew. And now his work schedule was as perfect as it could get. Not only that, but he could pray while in that car, and listen to things on radio, preaching, books on tape, etc. etc. The physical need was met and a strategic position acquired, all in one moment, after that very bad day when he chickened out on the Starbucks job and came home depressed. Then he looked out the window and saw this little car waiting to be fixed. Reluctantly he obeyed God’s lead, and now he sat in the car smiling, for God is good and always has a plan.

When the door opened for day-shift, Don was once again able to reconnect with “Oasis of Hope Church” and help with the ministry birthing at that government housing apartment complex. The need was great, and when he reconnected he discovered there was talk of expansion! The Southern Baptist liked what Chris was doing, they had plans to send teams and help him expand to three new complexes! Soon he would have a ministry outreach every week! But this was only one opportunity whose door was opening, and these other two really had his attention.

Pastor Kerry and his wife Twyla. Their Church on Mass. Ave. and the special assignment from God on Pastor Kerry’s heart, that of reaching the “creative people” of the city. You see, the purpose of this ministry was not geographical as much as it was “gifting oriented”.  Pastor Kerry, as an artist, had a heart to reach out to other creative type people, which just happened to include “writers”. Don pondered what this special door could lead to? He had always felt a bit of a loner, misunderstood by others who did not have his pondering ways, because he thought deep about things, sought out solitude, as in his little car cruising around, so he could ponder things and create stories revealing the treasures he uncovered in God. What might this new connection lead to? Only God knew. Pastor Kerry wanted to read his newest story as soon as it was ready.

He thought about the unexpected call from a past disciple. How did God resurrect this old connection? Years had passed and this brother was in sore straights. They met after work and spent three hours together. This meeting had started at a Burger King and ended up in prayer in a secluded cemetery. God’s ways are unique, and His Presence had been strong while they prayed, but what could he leave this brother with? A story he had written, “Flapless”. That story had continued to minister, teach, and uplift, long after the two had parted, until they would meet again in one month, and Don was working on another story called, “Grasping the Wind”. God was still using his gift for writing, but how much more might God have planned?

However, the vision itself, that was the other unknown door. He had not been able to convince anyone at the Pentecostal Church to take up this vision. Perhaps because it was still untried. So the vision fell to him alone, to figure it out, to see what God would do, how do you reach your own neighborhood for Christ? The plan was slowly coming together and soon it would launch, but not without complete dedication to the “SECRET THINGS” of our Priesthood in Christ.

Yes, Don knew full well that was how he had gotten this far, and if it were to continue, then so must his Priesthood habits. After his year sabbatical, he fully understood that being a Christian was more than just being a “good person”, but there was a Priesthood. A Priesthood that God spent 4,000 years paying the price for, and when he ripped that veil in two, in the temple, when Christ gave his life on that cross, God the Father said, “Finally! IT is done!” Finally a supernatural life unlike any other was available for God’s people. Now we could be Caped Crusaders, if we are faithful to the secret things.

God is disgusted with his “SPOTLIIGHT seeking people”, who caught up in pride and desire for admiration, hide in their Church Boxes, proclaiming great things in the safety of their own, while neglecting the lost multitudes all around them, even in their very own neighborhood. We live in a day when some Christians make great and expensive journeys to minister one week in a land whose language they do not even speak, and yet they fail to try and reach their own neighborhood or city where they live all year long. What logical sense does this make? These people speak from pulpits as if they are examples?

We need to wake up. We are losing our own country while we hide in our church boxes listening to speakers who hide in the box too. Is it so brave to go to other church boxes in other countries where the people greet you with open arms, and need your money? Perhaps I should not speak such things? I who would compare Christianity to being a Caped Crusader? A Batman? How ridiculous. But if only Christians would be as faithful to the secret things of God, as Batman was to his secret things.

Is our Gotham lost? We are losing it more every day if we do not wake up to this vision. One year alone with God did this to me. I have more to say about this secret life. And there is a book growing, “Grasping the Wind”, written by a Christian Batman, with a neighborhood to reach and a city to save, one secret thing at a time, as it is revealed.

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“J.E.D.I. Theology” #3

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IS THERE AN AWAKENING OF LIGHT VERSES DARKNESS? IF NOT, LETS START ONE, AND IF SO, THEN LETS JOIN IT!

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“Ripple Theology #2”

IF WE CONTINUE WITH THE POEM…

About those ripples.

Do I care?

We all cause them.

Every action…every word…every deed.

Even if I don’t care,

I still cause ripples…bad ones.

I am a stone dropped in water.

Ker-plunk!

But I’m not “just” a stone.

I am ripples, and the ripples are important.

Jesus taught us to Live for the Ripples.

Ripples speak louder than words.

No life is silent. Every heartbeat is a ripple. Every breath. Even when our heart takes its last beat…our heart stopping will send out ripples. What have we chosen the Ripple Effect of our life to be? Self-gratification? Or a seeking of God and his will. Do our ripples only affect this world, or do they reach to heaven?

Jesus said that no man lights a candle and puts it under a bushel basket. How is it that so many Christians seem to be stuck under a basket? Their light only lights their little world? I also considered, what fool would use a basket to cover a flame? It seems apparent to me that God is telling us, Satan is so weak that all we have to do is begin to flame up in Christ and we can burn that basket away!

So why you still under that basket? I’m only asking what God will ask you one day.

This may be my last blog for a few days. God has been showing me how to do more, with less. After the back surgery, my income is roughly one-third what it use to be. Consequently, this may be the last day of Internet in my home. I will be going to our downtown Library to work my site. I will be rubbing elbows with many other people God has called me to reach out to, as I do. I am actually looking forward to this.

But I just want you to know if I’m slow in answering any comments, I probably just have not made it to the Library yet. 1000 Houses of H.O.P.E. is in process of being birthed. Those details will continue to come out in the story of “Gotham”. I hope I will make a connection downtown for a House of H.O.P.E.. Currently, my own neighborhood is priority one, but as I spend more time downtown, I am a light, a flame, just waiting to catch fire. Pray for supernaturally empowered godly ripples.

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“Do You have your Gotham?” > Chapter Fourteen

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

“REDLINE FAITH”

…… Oh Lord, you know I’ve been here before, but is there not a cause? I will trust you Lord, no matter what, and if no man comes to our rescue, I know you will. Amen.” The prayer ended.

Still very sick, still confused as to the reason why, bank account and bills plunging rapidly into the red, old vehicles barely still functioning, Don pressed on in faith. “Will you wake the Lord?” The question kept coming.

“Sleep on Lord, I wait.” was his answer, but even in his answering, there was the unknowing. The storm continued raging and the boat tossing, but was Jesus sleeping? Did he not see what was going on? Will you wake him in fear, or wait?

The worse part was feeling like he was not caring properly for his wife. It was one thing for him to endure hardness, but having to watch his wife? She was still very sick too, and her 2000 Dodge minivan had no heat. The heater blower motor had gone out and it was dead of winter in Indiana. She had no business in a freezing van as sick as she was, but the only other option was an old truck with bad tires she did not trust. “Why Lord? I know this is a test, but I still don’t understand why. Why now?”

Making matters worse was the weight of God’s vision upon him. After a year with God, he knew he had been given a great vision to reach people in neighborhoods, and was ready to run with this! However, sickness and poverty had him at a complete standstill. Even so, every decision made was made with the knowledge of this great mission upon him. He was not free to meet his needs in a worldly way, or he would abort this baby in his womb. If he went back to working sixty hours a week at some job not of God, the vision would die. The vision was at stake. This was the devil’s attack and he had to be faithful come what may! A calling from God can involve great sacrifices at times. Don understood the weight of this very well, even though most others might not. He knew there would be few who would understand. How many times he had been in this position before, and God always came through. Would he wake the Lord?

Funny thing poverty, how it can twist things. It seems people just don’t understand. The early morning prayer meeting he had been so faithful to. The guys liked to eat breakfast out afterwards. Not cheap places either. Waffle House was popular. They wanted him to join them. Don wanted to join them. Important things were talked about over those meals and connections were made. Sometimes he would go because he felt it was so very important to be in that conversation and in that group. Now here is where it gets complicated and you might not understand. I pray you try to understand. I mean no harm here

The group knew he was still without a job, and he had dropped as many “hints” as to his welfare as he dared, but nobody was “getting it”. However, when he would occasionally decide to join them and purchase the cheapest meal he could find on the menu, someone always picked up his ticket so he would not have to pay. For this he was grateful, but bad as this sounds, it was not breakfast out that he “needed”.

Perhaps if he were someone who spent his life looking for “hand-outs”, perhaps he could have enjoyed those free meals, but in actuality… he dreaded them. He could not enjoy the meal while he thought about his sick wife driving a cold van, or how the electric bill was going to get paid, or the hospital bill. As bad as it sounds, his friends thought they were helping him out by being so generous to buy his meal, but in actuality it was no help at all. He didn’t mind living poor. He’d been there before. The food he fixed at home was fine, but there were needs on his mind, and no one saw or heard.

Earlier that summer, God had led him to help a man who was fighting cancer. For weeks he had done a yard sale in his yard for this man. Don was still doing okay at that time, but had no spare income, so he did a yard sale which eventually made a total of $1,600.00 after all the weekends were added up. The money was given each week as it was earned, and it was all simply handed over, cash, no questions asked. He knew what it was like to be on both sides of this fence. But where were the rich guys for him? The guys gifted in making money just so they can help others in need? Maybe they were busy living their best life now?

Funny thing what Jesus said when he was observing the “widow and her two mites”. He said the rich people had all given out of their “abundance”. In other words, there had been no “sacrifice” in their giving. Where were the rich guys? He didn’t know. Perhaps checking out their next new car? Trimming their yard? Paying their $120.00/month cell phone bill? Eating out everyday? Who knew? But they were not there at this time, for these needs. It’s not about 10%, it’s about level of sacrifice. A poor persons 2% can be a greater sacrifice than a rich man’s ten percent, or twenty, or whatever.

Don knew he was an “opportunity” for someone, just like the man with cancer had been an opportunity of blessing for him. He also knew that in due time, if no “Prosperity Person” met his need, God eventually would. And God did. This story continues.

“REDLINE FAITH”

Ever feel redlined?

12 Apostles on a ship. Lost their stomachs every dip.

Lightning flashed and thunder roared!

Will you wake the Lord?

Easy faith in good times, not so easy when bad.

Bills plunging redline! Raging like a sea!

Waves crashing red! Seek to swallow me.

He said to cross the sea.

Should they have let him sleep?

Was that not the test, a faith that lets him rest?

Faith plunging redline.

T’is a strange thing indeed, to be in need, a raging sea…

while the Lord sleeps.

Perhaps he is inviting us, to a place of powerful rest.

Faith in the red.

My yoke is easy, my burden light.

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“RIPPLE THEOLOGY”

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Ever feel like you’re just a stone dropped in water?

Ever feel like all you are is a Ker-plunk?

“Ker-plunk!”

Hope you enjoy the following article.

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“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Twelve

THE ENCOUNTER III > This story is written as if fiction, but it is not. Fellow Christian, have you heard a call in your heart saying: “Gotham needs you?” Has God challenged you to take your city and your neighborhood very “personal”? That is what happened to me. I am caped in God’s Covering, and Indianapolis is my Gotham. Who’s yours?

CHAPTER TWELVE

The computer screen still glowed in front of him as Don relived that night with Chris. It was very simple and basic. How has Church become so complicated? After that first contact, Chris had begun to win some favor with the Apartment complex. This  was a “Point of Pain” area, so it was not hard to find ways of helping, and showing the love of God. He turned his minivan into a food pantry, and now, once a month, he was allowed to come to their monthly meeting in the Apartment Community Center and set up his food pantry. After the one hour meeting, people were allowed to sign up and come through the tables one by one.

Don remembered how the place was all abuzz when he entered the building that night. The tables were set up with food, but the meeting had not started yet. In the meantime he found Chris talking to a man named Charlie, and he was showing Charlie God’s plan of salvation by using a special phone app. Charlie found the diagrams very interesting, but was not ready to make a full commitment to Christ at this time. When Chris got called away to other things, Don found himself left there with Charlie, and an open opportunity.

“Charley”, he began, “Do you know that the Bible says God loves you?”

“Yes,” he answered. Charlie was well aware of what the Bible said about this.

“Do you understand that the Bible says God loves you so much that he was willing to come and die for you?”

“Yes,” the answer came again.

“Do you love God, Charley?” Don found himself asking.

“Yes,” Charley said.

“Well then, the question becomes, do you love him enough to give your life to him, like he did for you?”

Charley was very quiet. It seemed apparent he had accepted Christ many years ago but had drifted far away. Don could feel a heaviness on Charley’s spirit as he thought about these things, but he was not ready, so he prayed a short prayer with him, and knew God would speak more to Charley that night, as he pillowed his head.

After that, Chris and he had stood in the back for an hour while the meeting went on. A chair to sit would have been nice, but somehow that never happened and Don was happy just to be there. After the meeting people signed a card and lined up at the first table where Chris and Don stood waiting to pray. As each person approached and handed their card to Chris, he asked them, “Do you have a need we can pray about with you?” Amazingly, most of them did. Many of the people had already begun to look upon Chris as their Pastor, and they called him Pastor Chris.

Don was still amazed at the power he felt when praying for these people. How quickly words had come. How precise had been the prayers. How powerful they had felt, God doing a quick work, one by one, as Chris would pass a person to Don, and then he would take the next, and so it went one by one, powerful, precise, anointed. God was there! He was almost tangible!

“Did that all really happen?” he asked himself again as he sat in the glow of the blank computer screen. Yes it did. He knew it did, but still could hardly believe it. So different than what goes on in the comfortable and safe confines of the Church building. Simple Christianity, in a place of needs, meeting needs, both physical and spiritual, and God showed up in a special way in that difficult environment. The woman whose child had been killed in the playground, confessed she still wrestled with depression over it, and Don watched as Chris prayed for her. You could feel her sincere gratitude.

Big changes were coming Don’s way. He had answered God’s call to take his neighborhood and city very “personally”, like a Batman saying: “Gotham needs me!” But what would that mean? What would be the personal price to pay? Where would it lead? What kind of training? It is not like in the movies where everything happens in a nice package of two or three hours. Gaining an open door to an apartment complex, a community, a workplace, the lost, the streets, can take many months of prayer, training, and sacrifice. Are we willing? Are we willing to say, “Here am I, Lord.”, when God is asking, “Who will go?”

Don was about to leave the church of forty people he had been so involved with for three years, but it use to be two-hundred people, something was not working, and God was calling him away to a Church of six-hundred, to start from scratch again, and all this at the age of fifty-nine? But he needed a Church that was daring enough to embrace this vision, not only in word, but also in deeds.

Still unemployed and living on the part-time wages of a Cracker Barrel waitress, God had blessed their money to survive on for one year, but this was about to change too. So many changes to walk this path, so many adjustments to reach this new level, so much renewing of the mind, thinking outside the Church Box, submitting and obeying God’s revelation as it came, ordering his steps into a greater realm. Christmas was almost here, and after that 2015. Don already knew that 2015 was going to be something special…something radical…something like a Caped Crusader saying: “Not in my city, devil. I arrest you in the name of Jesus. And I will put works and obedience with my words. Show me the way, Lord. Here am I.

Batman? Maybe we need to learn something from the comic books. Stories of “super” heroes. Where are all the super-heroes of God? It does not come by us becoming super ourselves, but by us tapping into the One who is. Are we willing to pay that price? In comic books we see super heroes willing to defeat the super bad guys and save the people, save the city. We do have a super bad guy and his evil legions. OF COURSE, GOD’S TRAINING IS DIFFERENT THAN BATMAN’S, BUT ARE WE WILLING TO ANSWER SUCH A CALL?

This is the story of one who said yes, and these are the things that happened after I did. And God led me to others already saying yes, so I in turn could lead others to say, “YES”.

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“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Eight

THE ENCOUNTER III > This story is written as if fictional, but it is not, I’m living this every day. This is one man’s attempt to take up the mantle of being a caped crusader for God. I am caped in God’s Covering, and Indianapolis is my city. God says, My Gotham needs me.

Chapter Eight

The next time Don rode the bus back into downtown, he was ready, blog site cards in his pocket, and wouldn’t you know, it just happened a Christian Ladies Convention was in the city. Coming up an escalator he found the Panera Bread with a line backed clear out the door! “What in the world is going on?” He saw Bibles and Christian books in hands and on tables. In no time at all he had discovered an opportunity to hand out blog site cards, and so he did, but this was not really his target audience.

He only handed out a few before finding himself back in the Garden Center, sitting on a bench and watching all the moving people again. “What is it, Lord? What’s the next step? How do I reach those people? The ones not already carrying Bibles in their hands.”

He looked at his possible points of employment he had written down. As of yet he had applied at none, but it had to be downtown. Starbucks? Chick-fil-A? Subway? These were the main possibilities. If he wanted to meet people, and make connections, food offered his best chances. He was a little nervous about being the old man amongst so many young people, but he decided he could play the role of “grandpa” if needed, for surely that is how he would be seen.

“Time to get some more prayer power going,” he concluded.

Don was actively involved in a small church of around forty people, but he also had a close friend in another church who had asked him to join them for early morning 6:00a.m., Tuesday morning prayer. Now he had tried to get a prayer group going at his church, but so far it just wasn’t working, and here was another church asking him to join them, and so he would. It would not be easy at 6:00 a.m., a definite sacrifice, but Batman had his way to save a city, and so does the caped crusaders of God.

“Can’t get too much prayer. This has got to be soaked in prayer. I need your creative wisdom, Lord. I need my steps ordered of you supernaturally. People are tired of the same old kind of out reaches. Got to be something different, fresh, new, exciting, and especially anointed! My blog site is ready. I have this tool but it is not enough of itself. I don’t have the whole picture yet.”

Thinking about his own prayer time that morning, “What about Chris, Lord? Why did he come to mind when I was praying today? I haven’t seen that young man in at least two years. I wonder what he is doing now? Still selling insurance? You want me to find him? Hhmmm, I don’t know. He moved way out east and northward somewhere. Facebook? You want me to try facebook again? DO I HAVE TOO? Okay.”

Another manhunt. A connection lost in time. God’s bounty hunter would hunt and find as the pieces of the puzzle slowly come together. Soon…many pieces are about to fall, but first…more prayers.

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“JUST JESUS”

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Merry Christmas everybody! Is there really any such thing as “Just Jesus”?

As we enter this Christmas week I just want Jesus straight. In saying that, I realize that takes in a huge panorama of possibilities, but I want my foam, fluff, and syrup in my cappuccino, not Jesus. Give me Jesus straight. Not watered down and sugar coated. A world wrestling with pain and sin, even wanting to take Jesus out of Christmas, which is like trying to take cold out of snow, how can a world be so upside down to even think you can take the reason out of a holiday and still have reason for the holiday? Sheesh! Too much cappuccino has gone to our heads! My point exactly! If the pagans want a Christmas without Jesus, let them come up with their own holiday.

If you want to understand this better, I hope you will read the below article, if you have not already. I love a good latte or cappuccino too, but when it comes to Jesus we need him straight. I felt this important enough to hit it twice.

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“GOTHAM” 12/10/14

“THE ENCOUNTER III” > The story is written as if fictional, but it is not, I’m living this every day. Signed: Don.

CHAPTER FOUR

The bus continued rolling in the night. It turned right at the VA Hospital and did a horseshoe shaped loop past the Eskenazi Hospital, and then back out onto 10th street. The Internet had spoken of a hub drop around Senate and Capitol. That sounded like a good place to jump off, and they would soon be there.

As a hub stop, several were exiting at this point, which made it easy to recognize. Don grabbed his small backpack and quickly slipped out the middle side door onto the street. Acting like he knew what he was doing, he immediately began walking in a direction he hoped led to Circle Center Mall. He looked like he knew where he was going but actually he was still finding his bearings. It was hard to miss Monument Circle, so as soon as he spotted it, he turned, knowing he could find his way from there.

Now that he had his bearings he was free to think about what he came here for, to hear God. He would walk in the night, he would look and listen, he would commune with God in his soul, and he would listen for leading. This was a spiritual scouting trip. Just riding the IndyGo bus downtown had been a new experience, and he wasn’t sure what bus stop he planned to take back, because he also wanted to walk through the college campus area, and that would take him away from the Circle, and the Mall.

Finding the Mall he began his journey through. He looked at the people sitting in Panera Bread, laptops open, or chit-chatting with a friend, a cup of coffee in their hand. He walked past so many food places in the food courtyard. “What about that place, Lord?” But he felt nothing. He walked through all three levels and passed many stores, but nothing stood out. Finally reaching his favorite area, the Garden Center, he found a bench and sat watching the people moving below, on the sidewalks outside, and he prayed, and he listened.

Much to his surprise he had noticed there was a Starbuck right on Monument Circle. He did not know this. He had been fasting all day. “Yes, a green tea latte would be wonderful. I will end the fast and enjoy the view of the Circle, and I will listen. I will sip my latte and listen.

A short hike later it had all come true. He had his drink and a stool right in front of the street window looking out at the War Monument. It was a very comfortable night. People were out and about in the beautiful fall weather. This Starbuck was known for having Baristas that were the best in town. They moved like high-speed efficient machines and yet could manage to be friendly at the same time. Soon, as he stared out the window, people passing, War Monument standing, friendly chatter all around, he thought about the power of his new life, and how much he wanted to share it.

For too long he had thought being a Christian was just about being a good person, with the help of God, but now he knew it was more, it was so much more, it was supernatural. He pulled the book from his bag, “Flap Less / Soar More”, and then took another delicious sip of his hot latte. It was just reaching the best temperature. He stared at the eagle soaring on the cover, and he wished every person knew what God was offering them. The question was, how was he going to find a way to share? Even just one person? God would send him downtown even for just one, but in his heart he knew it would be more.

What was the difference in his new life? It was like a child trying to fly a kite but there was no wind. He had been the child running, running, and running. As long as he ran, pulling the string behind him, the kite would fly, but as soon as he stopped, it started falling back to the ground, and so he ran again! Flapping, flapping, flapping. Somehow he knew it was right for the kite to fly, but what he did not understand was how God wanted to send a Wind. Once he caught a glimpse of the power of his priesthood to ride the Wind…he understood supernatural…he understood soaring…and he would never live the same again!

So he was here to soar, not flap. His night had gone well so far, and he had learned much, but the night was not over. Countless people moving all around him, candles in the night, glowing now but so quickly out if chance happened upon them. There would be a way, and God would show him. No one knew, no one suspected that a silver haired man sipping on a latte, staring at a War Monument, was a warrior at heart, and he felt very good to be here, to be right here.

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“The Encounter III” > GOTHAM 12/9/14

THE ENCOUNTER III > The story is written as if fiction, but it is not, I am living this every day. Signed: Don.

CHAPTER THREE

The bus stop was just outside a Wendy’s hamburger place and after about twenty minutes of waiting, Don saw the lights of a bus dancing in the distance, working its way up 10th street, coming his way. Standing there alone in the dark he wondered about this unknown world he was about to enter, and his heart began to beat just a little faster. No longer a young man, pushing 59, he was about to enter a realm mostly experienced by those considered to be “less fortunate”. Would he be welcome there? He had his $1.75 clutched tightly in his hand. He did not want to slow the bus down anymore than possible, but just exactly where did the money go?

His moment was upon him, the bus quickly hissing to a stop and doors flying opening. He thought he saw the floor drop a few inches in the dark. Did he really see that? No time to figure it out, the driver is waiting. Stepping on, he sees a metal box waiting to take his money, but exactly where does it go in? The bus driver is looking at him.

“This is my first time,” he quickly informs while trying to spot the right slots in the dim light. The driver points and then says, “Just pull the cord when you’re ready to get off.”

Inserting the bill and change, he then walks away wondering what the driver meant by pulling a cord? Pulling a cord? But again his thoughts are interrupted as the bus quickly accelerates before he has found a seat! He grabs the bar overhead and hangs on, regaining his balance and fighting off the G-forces! “Woe! So that’s what that bar is there for.”

There are plenty of empty seats. Before he knows it he is on the bus and sailing down the little narrow street. This bus driver flew! He felt like a spy rushing into the unknown. Would anyone see through his cover? Was someone watching him even now, speculating if the old white guy had a wallet full of money? Did he dress right for riding the bus, to blend in and become one with them? He had already shown he didn’t know what he was doing, and as he looked out the side window into the dark, he saw the poor areas of Haughville beginning to pass. He wondered at how fast the huge bus could move on this narrow street. As an ex-truck driver he had knowledge of such things, and it was exhilarating! As he sat there undercover, headed to downtown Indy, he was on his way, no turning back now, it was happening!

It was not the busy time, only a few were on the bus and they were mostly quiet, everyone in their own little world, but he did take note he was the only white spot in the small group. Looking around he saw the yellow cord running just above the windows. “Oh, pull that cord?”

Someone pulled the cord, “Stop requested…10th and Tibbs…hold on while bus is moving.” It was a female voice, a recording, and it announced upcoming streets and anytime a stop was requested. “This is pretty cool,” Don thought to himself as the bus hissed to a stop. He noticed the back half of the bus sat higher, an elevated floor, and wish he had gone farther back. Next time he would. There was also a middle door, not just one up at the front, but in the middle, and it opened when the front one did. He would be able to jump out the side from the middle, but exactly what might he jump into?

It was hard to see clearly out the windows. It was dark outside but the bus was well lit on the inside. Did he know downtown well enough to jump off at a good place, or might he end up walking a mile, or worse yet, land in a bad area? He would soon find out as the adventure continued.

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