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I think it has been several years since I have written anything new on my blog. It feels a bit odd to be sitting back down and fumbling around with my thoughts but here it goes. The first week of February 2014 I had a dream that had a setting in the deep south and I knew the year was 1949.

Old SKELLY STATION

In the dream I was 13 years old. I was with a group traveling across the country in a school bus. The bus came to a stop at the edge of a small town. I was asked to get out of the bus and walk into town and find out where we were. I realized in the dream it was Sunday and was under the Blue Law meaning business’s could not be open on Sunday and all of them were closed. I walked down the road that spiraled down into a valley. I came across a Skelly gas station. It was closed, but the door was cracked open so I peaked in, widening the gap of the door. Inside were about 15 African American men ranging in age from 15 to 90. I startled them as they were having a bible study. I then realized why there was no one visible in town, they were all in church. Then I realized why the men were meeting in the gas station, They were not welcome in any churches in that town. Instantly I saw they were afraid I was going to disclose their location. I began to back out of the doorway, when a heard a song about the name of Jesus in my head. It was not a known song, but seemed fresh like God had just given it to me. I began to sing it and and all of the men began to sing with me. I thought it was the most beautiful sound I had every heard. All of the sudden all the colors became alive even the oil cans had light shinning out of them. We all knew the Lord was in the room with us and the dream ended. The dream stayed with me all week as pondered it and wished I could remember the words to the song.

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1949 Chevrolet pickup

1949 Chevrolet pickup

The old Ben Franklin store in Independence

The old Ben Franklin store in Independence

 

 

 

 

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About a week later I had another dream and again I was 13 years old and the year was the same, 1949. This dream began with me in the back of a brand new red 1949 Chevrolet pickup truck. I was in the back of the truck leaning over the cab with the wind in my face as we were rolling down Winner Road in Independence Missouri. I began to motion to stop the truck and to let me inside. The driver pulled over and I hopped out and climbed inside. In the seat was a boy about the same age as me in the dream. Then I looked over at the driver, at 1st I thought it was my grand father George Holmes then with a closer look my eyes bugged out, it was “Harry S Truman.”  I was shocked and sit in amazement. The boy looked out the window and saw a Ben Franklin s Five and Dime store. He said hey can you let me out I need to stop and get some candy. Harry pulled over and out jumped the boy. As he jumped out He noticed Chevrolet written on the fender of the truck then glanced at the President who had a red hat on matching the color of the red truck and said in big letters Chevrolet. He asked Harry whats with the hat? He laughed and said I just like Chevrolet. Off went the boy to buy His candy. A deep stare came from the president as he questioned me, “what did you think about that?” I thought about it for a minute and said ” The boy has the audience of the president of the United States and wasted His question on a hat!” The president laughed at me then after a pause he said “so what’s your question?”  Again I pondered the question and after a minute I said “How long is the ride?” Harry grinned and with a wink He said, “Now that’s the right question”

Instantly I was awake and thinking wow that is the 2nd dream in two weeks that took place in the  year 1949 and I was 13 years old in both. All that week I wondered If there was something to the dreams. I know that Harry S Truman started His 2nd term in 1949 and that the previous year he had helped with  the start of the new nation of Israel. I realize that many Christians think that started a time countdown to the 2nd coming of Jesus Christ. I also had previously met Harry S Truman’s niece Mary Gracey Truman. She had told me that Her uncle believed that His destiny had been planned by God to purposes tied to Israel. Interesting that in both dreams I was 13 the age when a Jewish boy becomes a man. Anyway I did not make to much about it but daily the dreams replayed in my head.

Another week passed and I woke at 4:44 from a dream about the other 2 dreams. Now I am sitting up in bed, what is with all this? I still don’t know but is starting to make me wonder if something is really happening either something internal I need to work through or something a bit more weird.

This  3rd dream took place at a large round table. Everyone was older like in their 90’s and all seated around the table. They were discussing world events and time lines. There were baskets of grapes and bottles of wine intermingled. I thought wow this is the Prophet Joel’s place. I dared not open my mouth but had a feeling there were both terrible things and wonderful things being planned. I only heard judgment being mentioned but kept waiting for the conversation to turn to blessings but did not. Then the one in charge spoke to me. He had long white hair and beard and very serious. He said to me its coming and they are all doing their own agenda’s and will not understand anything that is about to happen. You must tell Regina Shank so She can explain to them what has happened after the fact. It will be healing salve to many. I had no time to reply or ask questions tough I had many. I was awake and wide awake at that.

A week later I did talk to Regina by phone and She asked me to write the dream down. She has been the prayer coordinator for the state of Missouri for several national and International prayer groups fr years and is highly respected.  I decided I would put the dream up here and see who finds it. It might just be crazy dreams with no purpose at all BUT just in case here it is. Blessings John

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January 13th early in the morning my wife Dianna woke me up and told me “you sure are sleeping loud” I knew it was true I had been dreaming I was back in Africa and I had been dropped into the middle of devastation. I was working to get orphans into homes. It was overwhelming, one minute I was in Africa the next I would be back in Missouri. Then the dream slowed down into slow motion. I had been trying to get someone to explain to me what had brought about such devastation in Africa and how I ended up in the middle of it all.

There it was the longest train I had ever seen, it was a old coal burning train. It was pulling passenger cars and on each car was written Show Me Orphan Train. In the windows were little faces pressed against the glass. At this point I am crying looking into the faces of desperation to be loved, it was overwhelming. In the dream Linda a 20 year old Ugandan girl that is living with us while going to college pointed at the children and said “John it’s about them” I woke immediately with all kinds of emotions.

I thought about the meeting I have today with my friends from Alma Missouri introducing them to Gizaw my friend from Ethiopia who will be talking to us about the need for orphanages in Ethiopia. I thought about our friends John and Sharon who minister in Kenya that had just been at the house talking about the conditions there. I thought about my own experiences in Uganda, Egypt and Ethiopia.

Then I thought about a teaching that Regina Shank does on overcoming rejection and She tell’s stories about the orphan trains that would move from the east coast to the Midwest dropping off children to waiting families. Of course there are some bad stories about abuse and using the kids as slave labor. As a whole the Midwest provided homes, I myself have a great grandmother who was an orphan and was taken in to a wonderful family in Beatrice Nebraska.

Here is an advertisement below that appeared in the Troy Free Press Feb 11, 1910. Troy is in Lincoln County.

Wanted
HOMES for CHILDREN
A company of homeless children from the East will arrive at
TROY, MO., ON FRIDAY, FEB. 25th, 1910
These children are of various ages and of both sexes, having been thrown friendless upon the world. They come under the auspices of the Children’s Aid Society of New York. They are well disciplined, having come from the various orphanages. The citizens of this community are asked to assist the agent in finding good homes for them. Persons taking these children must be recommended by the local committee. They must treat the children in every way as a member of the family, sending them to school, church, Sabbath school and properly clothe them until they are 17 years old. The following well-known citizens have agreed to act as local committee to aid the agents in securing homes:
O. H. AVERY   E. B. WOOLFOLK   H. F. CHILDERS
WM. YOUNG   G. W. COLBERT
Applications must be made to, and endorsed by, the local committee.
An address will be made by the agent. Come and see the children and hear the address. Distribution will take place at the
Opera House, Friday, Feb. 25, at 1:30 p.m.
B. W. TICE and MISS A. L. HILL, Agents, 105 E. 22nd St., New York City. Rev. J. W. SWAN, University Place, Nebraska, Western Agent

 orphantrain1.jpg

Orphan Train in Black & White – Diamond Someday “above”

Here are the words to a blue grass song: Orphan Train “below”

By (Utah Phillips)

Once I had a darling mother, though I can’t recall her name
I had a baby brother who I’ll never see again
For the Children’s Home is sending us out on the Orphan Train
To try to find someone to take us in

cho: Take us in, we have rode the Orphan Train
     Take us in, we need a home, we need a name
     Take us in, oh won’t you be our kin
     We are looking for someone to take us in

I have stolen from the poorbox, I’ve begged the city streets
I’ve swabbed the bars and poolrooms for a little bite to eat
In my daddy’s old green jacket and these rags upon my feet
I’ve been looking for someone to take me in

The Children’s Home they gathered us, me and all the rest
They taught us to sit quietly until the food was blest
Then they put us on the Orphan Train and sent us way out West
To try to find someone to take us in.

The farmers and their families they came from miles around
We lined up on the platform of the station in each town
And one by one we parted like some living lost-and-found
And one by one we all were taken in

Now there’s many a fine doctor or a teacher in your school
There’s many a good preacher who can teach the Golden Rule
Who started out an orphan sleeping in the freezing rain
Whose life began out on the Orphan Train.

Well I have to get going and get ready for Church, I just wanted to get the dream down before I forgot it. I hope it will stir you up to pray for those all over the world that have no place to call home and no one to call family. They need to know they have a father who has declared so from heaven. Some times we need to be reminded as the church we are His hands and Feet and more than that we are His Family with open arms and open eyes.

Psalms 68:4-6  Sing to God, sing praise to his name, extol him who rides on the clouds– his name is the Lord– and rejoice before him. 5 A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. 6 God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

Part 2   https://riverflowsdown.wordpress.com/2008/01/16/show-me-orphan-train-dream-part-2/

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A couple of months back I received a call from the community Library in Adrian Missouri. I was invited to do a book signing with several men who had written books who had lived in Adrian. Of course I said yes with a chance to go back and see some of my old friends I had not seen in years.

When we arrived we found the old down town area revitalized and it looked great. I had heard about it from my good friend Mark Lovelace one of the city alderman. They were having an official opening ceremony with many events, one of which was our book signing. Arlan Vaughn had written a book about his travels on the Missouri river and the history of the river. My book is about mission adventures to Africa. Don Arndt had written a book called “See the Dragon” “one Wolfhound’s Vietnam Story”

I first meet Don in the mid 1970 while stocking shelves at Yoss Thriftway. Don’s mother Alma worked at Yoss’s and She was at the top of my good list. Not because She made the best Cinnamon rolls in the state of Missouri, though that helped. She was the best example of a grandmother I knew of other than my own. She took me under Her wing and I will never forget Her. Don would come into the store for something and catch His mother’s eye. I always knew She was proud of Him I just thought it was because He had built a successful business selling and repairing TV’s and appliances and introduced cable TV to Adrian. Only as Don began to speak about His book did I understand the depths of Her pride.

I had the privilege of reading Don’s Book and highly recommend it. Don writes from a humble point to the reader, His grandchildren and we the readers get to listen in. That my friend is powerful. For me it took me back to the late 1960’s as we would watch the evening news as my mother watched with one hand over mouth. Her brother Ronald Holmes flew a helicopter in Vietnam and many times I could hear Mom praying for Him in Her room. For years it was our daily reminder that we were at war.

My experience about men who came home from that war was don’t ask questions. I knew they had been spit on and rejected by many Americans who had been caught up in the flower power 70’s thing. For me it was sickening, these men were not much more than boys that had been drafted into an unpopular war. May everyone of them hear “Welcome Home” I pray that God himself will lift the pain and rejection these Hero’s suffered by the ugly actions of those they served. Ok enough of my soapbox on to Don.

Don describes Himself not as a Hero but one who served along side Hero’s. I say this, a real Hero is called one by others and sees oneself as a shadow in the company of greatness. I find Don a Hero for exposing His heart to the world. I found the book refreshing seeing how the hard conditions of Don’s childhood prepared him for War. He had Hope instilled in Him and though shaken, it remained and served as a compass keeping Him going in the right direction.

The bottom line is this this book unlocks the wounded heart that has been shut by war. After our signing Don and I exchanged book’s and wrote a little note to each other. After Don’s note He looked up at me and said “John, can I write my favorite bible verse for you”, I said “Yes Don Yes by all means” 

Here it is James 1:2-3 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

Don has Joy after all He has suffered, His faith has been tryed and has more patience than any doctor I’ve seen. pun intended.  You can purchase a hardback copy at  http://www.lulu.com/content/1090935 . Don has a web page check it out at http://www.seethedragon.com/

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I live just about one mile from the Missouri Kansas state line in Kansas City. We shop on state line and Tigers and Jay-hawks insignia are sported on most every shirt. Lots of comments are made and I personally look forward to the semi friendly jesting.

I think we all know this year was amazing for both our teams of course last weekend gave us Tiger fans a smile that we can’t wipe off. It has been over 100 years since the boarder wars between our states. Do you know where MU got its Tiger nickname? It can be traced back to the Civil War period. Guerilla’s had been raiding small towns, and the big town of Columbia prepared for an attack. Home guards banded together to stop a rumored plan of attack by bloody Bill Anderson. They fortified the courthouse and built a blockhouse in the middle of town and waited, but Bill never came. People saw how quick they pounced into action without fear and called them the Tigers. Missouri’s football team started in 1890 and picked up the name. This year Chase Daniels leads the Tigers and has the heart of one as well, Go Chase.

Interesting enough considering the history of the name, coach Gary Pinkel describes Chase Daniels as “Battlefield Commander”. The Big 12 named Tigers Quarterback Chase Daniel the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year.

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