Onething '09

I was sitting with my friend Karen back in November, expressing my heart's desire to hear the Lord in a clear, precise way. To which Karen replied something like, "you can." I have always respected Karen's ability to hear from the Lord and encourage others with His word. I have wanted to be able to do so in a similar way. Not in Karen's way, as only Karen can do it Karen's way, and only I can walk out my walk with the Lord. But, I have wanted to have an ear for what He hears and see what He sees.

As I entered into Onething this year, I knew it would be different because I was serving this year, instead of just going and soaking. I felt the Lord's leading in this, and knew it would be different, but different is good when you're led by the Lord. From the beginning of the conference, I was pumped!

On the first day of the conference, I served as an usher. I was put in a section fairly far back from the stage, which was actually a blessing because it was my first time to ever be an usher and I was kind of nervous.

The first service Misty led, and I was excited. In the midst of the first worship set, I was walking around my section, praying and singing. I was having fun, even though I was occasionally helping someone find a seat or telling someone to not block the aisle. In the midst of my walking, a gal walked up to me and told me that the Lord told her and her husband to bless me, and she handed me a dollar bill and prayed for me. I just received, put the money in my pocket, and went on. I didn't even look at the bill to see how much it was because I needed to focus on ushering. Later, during the sermon, I looked in my pocket, and the gal had given me a $50 bill! I just smiled and thanked the Lord. I have never been blessed by that, so that was REALLY cool.

Misty led the following service as well, and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed praying for others and helping out whenever I could. I must admit, I was tired by the end of the ushering shifts because I walked the whole time. So, when my shift was over, I sat and enjoyed the music. It was really fun. It was a great way to end my day.

Everyday except the first one, I drove the shuttle from 11-4. Whenever I had a full load of passengers board, I started out saying, "HI, welcome to the Onething shuttle. My name is Shortone and I will be your driver to the GloryDome today. I want to start out by praying for us, and then after that I will share a brief story before you enjoy the rest of your ride. But, as I pray my eyes will be open, so don't think that I'm praying and driving with my eyes shut." Everyone always laughed after that. I proceeded to drive and pray and then share my testimony of becoming a shuttle driver. Everyone seemed to enjoy it, and I met SO MANY cool people. I met several visitors as well as people from IHOP that were simply riding the shuttle to save money on parking. I prayed and shared my testimony with every full load of passengers I had, and it was really fun. The only disadvantage is that today my voice cracks and I have a sore throat off and on. But, it was really cool, and made shuttling God's kids REALLY fun. I want to drive again this coming December, as it was truly a highlight of my week!

Every evening I ushered, and I enjoyed it. It was a bit harder than driving the shuttle because I had to tell people to stay out of the aisle and where to sit, but it was fun. My favorite part was getting to pray for people. Several times I would go over and pray and then the Lord would give me a word for them. Over the course of the four days, I grew in my ability to hear from the Lord and encourage His kids in the process. I am finally walking into what I had shared with Karen that weekend in November, and that excites me.

Last night, I saw a young man seeking Him with all he had. Typically guys pray for guys and girls pray for girls, but the Lord was speaking to me to go over and pray for him. So, I went over and started praying for him. In the midst of praying, I got a word for him, and started sharing it, and by the end of it, he was on the floor sobbing. I stayed with him and prayed over him. We were on the floor for a long time, and I was so excited for him! He got a breakthrough in those moments and God used me to help him!!! It was AWESOME! Afterward, he got up and said that what I said was right on. SWEET.

I also had a gal walk over to me and ask me to pray for her. This RARELY happens to me, but it was really cool and fun. I like that God is having me pray for others and bless them as they are seeking him.

Finally (and really I could go on and on, but I won't!) after we entered in the new year, SingingGal came over and joined me in worship. We had THE BEST time! We were making up moves for the song, and singing. Of course, my voice was incredibly hoarse, so it wasn't pretty, but we laughed a lot and had FUN. It was the PERFECT way to end the conference. It's so cool how God always gives us what we need and when we need it. It was AWESOME!

The conference was a blast, and part of me can't believe it's over. However, this year I'm not sad like I usually am when it's over. I think that's because I live here now and Onething was just a bigger version of what IHOP normally is, so I don't have to wait 12 months to experience God like that again. That is really cool in my book.

While I was at the conference, some friends of mine kept Jay. I figured that it would be more fun for him to be with a family than to be in a box 12+ hours a day. He had a GREAT time with the family, and he's now asleep at my feet. Between the adoptive family for the week and SingingGal's family here this afternoon, he is pooped. I thought it was cute when he first saw me when I went to pick him up! He went NUTS and was incredibly happy to see me! It's good to have him home. I have missed him.

Well, I need to relax. The conference is always good, but I am exhausted tonight.

Seriously. That's what I'm talkin' about! :-)