"The Lord told me to share something with you," said a new friend I had just met in Idaho, a precious pastor's wife named Joy Powell.
"What did He tell you?" I said.
"He said for me to tell you: "Don't underestimate what can happen in just ONE day!"
Joy had no idea of what had taken place just the night before on my trip to Idaho...
On Friday afternoon I was taken back to the hotel to freshen up and prepare for the evening service. As part of the service, the state women's director, Gail Crownover, had asked that the theme be worship, and requested that I sing some of my songs and speak, as well as lead the ladies in a time of worship around the altars. I was already prepared well in advance -- months in advance, actually. But, I always do a last minute prep, particularly in getting quiet, and focused. In this case I intended on going over a few of my tracks, utilizing my computer.
Imagine my shock when I got back to my hotel room and discovered, my laptop was DEAD. And it's not even an old computer. It had been with me on the entire trip, and had never been dropped or damaged in any way. I have no idea what caused this, but the screen is totally black. I was upset not only about the inability to do last minute prep for Friday night, but also about the fact that many important documents were lost. I'm traveling a lot this month preaching and had prepared 11 sermons for travel this month as well as power points, the Mother's Day message for Celebration. My book proposals and manuscripts (none of which are saved ANYWHERE else! I know, I know, that is STUPID, STUPID, STUPID...never again!!) were also on the laptop. So much more is on the computer but those things were especially important to me.
I immediately realized I was going to have to go home and rewrite all these messages and powerpoints, QUICKLY. Almost as soon as I get home to Tampa, I have to turn back around and leave for North Carolina to preach a conference there! All of my preparation was now.........down the drain. And I had poured so many hours into all of those messages.
I had to place all those thoughts aside Friday night for the good of this conference and what God wanted to do here. I cast it aside and went to service that night, and pressed in, and the Lord did an AMAZING work. Women were in the altars crying out to God for HOURS. It was simply other-worldly. To God be the glory!
I was on a spiritual cloud but exhausted and came back to my hotel room and called my husband. It was very late in Tampa but he was still up, troubleshooting and researching and trying to see what could be wrong with my laptop. After about an hour and a half of taking me through some steps to try to fix it, nothing changed. Still dead. I went to sleep, determined to cast these thoughts of fear aside. People are more important than a laptop, or important documents. I needed to give my all to the women of Idaho who sacrificed and planned to be here this weekend. They needed to be the focus.
I woke up a few hours before my alarm went off Saturday. I thought the Lord woke me up just to spend some time with Him. I did that. After a while, I felt Him impress on me to turn the computer on. I said, "Lord, I don't want to do that. It's depressing. I don't want to focus on that. If it doesn't come on I'm going to have to fight to cast the thoughts of the broken laptop aside once again and go to service this morning." He STRONGLY impressed me to get two flash drives out of my purse and go to the computer. I did. I turned it on. Miraculously, the laptop came on. I sat down and quickly put the flash drive in...
I moved all of my sermons, my manuscripts, my most important church documents, and personal documents that would be hard to live without onto the flash drives. As soon as the most important documents were on the flash drive, suddenly the computer shut down and went totally dead again.
The computer has been dead ever since.
It will not come back on, however all of my important documents have been retained. My husband says if he can fix it, he will and if not he'll make sure I have another one asap as he knows my life's work happens mostly in writing. (He's a good hubby like that, and for so many other reasons.) All along the way this weekend he's said, "Relax, Deanna...don't worry. God's got this. And I'm working on this too for you, one way or the other, it will work out. It will be okay."
I was able to go into the meetings on Saturday and not even have to fight to place the thoughts of all the lost documents and the broken laptop aside. In one day, God did the miraculous and gave me my documents back. I am so thankful to Him for a second chance, in so many ways. He's such a good God.
I am also grateful that the hotel I'm staying in has a business center where I can blog. :)
We had a taste of heaven in Twin Falls and Boise this weekend. God was so faithful to do a work in hearts and lives. I am so full with all that He did, I hardly know where to even begin to tell it all. I'm sure I will blog some about it over the coming weeks. Several people shared their stories with me about how their lives were changed. The leaders of the conference also invited the women to write letters to me and share with me. I've never had that happen before as far as women being encouraged to write letters for me to take home. This is so cool.
Service this morning at River City Church was a delight. One elderly man pulled me aside after the service and with tears streaming down his face said, "I've been a Christian most of my life. I've taught Sunday School. I've been involved in Christian things all my life. But this morning was a brand new experience for me. I have been challenged about going to a whole new level. Even at my age, I am convicted about big changes that need to happen in my life. I'm ready to impact those around me in a whole new way."
Yes!!!!!!!!!!! Don't ever underestimate what can happen in ONE DAY!!!
Shout now, somebody!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!