Florida Trip Report (Dec 2011 – January 2012)

Saturday, December 24th, 2011
Christmas Eve
(The journey of 2,800 miles begins with a single step)

Our journey began later than expected due to delays with packing, etc. We drove until the small hours of the morning & stopped in Johnson City, TN to spend the night. 

Sunday, December 25th, 2011
Christmas Day

(Johnson City, TN)

Sunday morning we attended service at ‘Happy Valley Church Of Jesus Christ‘ (Bro. Donny Reagan – Pastor), and heard Bro. Paul LaFontaine preach a timely Christmas message on how ‘Wise Men Follow The Word Made Flesh‘.
After service some friends graciously opened their home for us to join them for their Christmas luncheon. We were able to meet some new friends as well, and enjoyed our time of fellowship there.
After lunch we got back on the road, and learned a valuable lesson that Joseph & Mary learned two thousand years ago; don’t travel on Christmas day! There were hardly any stores open, which made finding a place to eat supper was difficult, but thankfully (in our case) we did find a room in the inn.

Monday, December 26th – Wednesday, December 28th, 2011
(Orlando, FL)

On Monday we made it to Orlando, where we picked up my parents at the airport, and were able to enjoy a few days of family vacation. 

Thursday, December 29th, 2011
(Okeechobee, FL) 
On Thursday we drove to Okeechobee, and listened to part of ‘The Oncoming Storm’ (60-0229) where Bro. Branham mentions the hurricane that destroyed much of that area in 1928.
I preached at ‘Bible Truth Tabernacle‘ (Bro. Willie Smiley – Pastor) on the thought of ‘Be It Unto Me (According To Thy Word)‘. The LORD blessed the service, and the fellowship afterwards. My wife (Sis. Rebekah) was excited to finally be able to meet Bro. Smiley’s wife (Sis. Jeanna)
Lake Okeechobee

(60-0229) THE ONCOMING STORM (Phoenix, AZ)
“… they lived close to the great Okeechobee Lake, and the waters begin to rise as the typhoon lifted the waters all the way from the bottom of the lake. That’s what makes them so dangerous; they’re shallow; the boats rock, and that’s how the waves come up and turn the boats beneath them. The storms comes and just whirls up the water and packs it for miles.” 

Friday, December 30th, 2011
(Okeechobee & West Palm Beach, FL)

On Friday we visited Lake Okeechobee (where we took some beautiful pictures), and then drove on to West Palm Beach.

After eating at a local fast food chain we had quite a few pieces of our chicken left untouched so my Dad offered it a little Hispanic family. After talking to them briefly we found out that they were Pentecostal, and had heard of Bro. Branham. Having previously packed some materials for such an occasion; I was able to share several sermon books & the ‘Life Story‘ CD (59-0419) with them.

Once we were back in the vehicle I commented that he had given them some of our natural food, and I was able to offer them some ‘Spiritual Food In Due Season‘ as well.
Upon leaving the restaurant we drove to Palm Beach Island where our boys were able to see the ocean for their first time, and even play in the water for a little bit.

Palm Beach Island


62-0715 (Spokane, WA)

“… the old salt said to the young poet, said, “Where goest thou, my good man?” He said, “Oh, sir.” He said, “I am a poet.” And said, “I’ve wrote of the sea, and–but I have never seen it yet, and I’m going down.” Said, “Oh, I just can’t wait till I see the sea, to hear the gulls, watch the bright blue skies reflecting itself in it’s–in its big body of water, to smell the brine of the salt, and to see the whitecaps spraying up like that.” The old salt took his pipe out, and spit, said, “Huh. I don’t see nothing so thrilling about it. I been there for sixty years.” See? That’s right. He’d been on it so much, it was common to him. See? That’s what’s the matter with the church. We’ve seen the goodness of God so much till it’s become common to us.”

We checked into our hotel in West Palm Beach, and met Bro. Jack Duff (pastor of Spirit & Truth Tabernacle in West Palm Beach, FL), and part of his family for supper. They had just returned that day from services he had preached at in Zimbabwe, and they had some wonderful stories & pictures to share with us from their journey. 

Saturday, December 31st, 2011
New Year’s Eve (West Palm Beach, FL)

We met with Bro. Jack & his family for lunch, and then went back to the hotel for some rest before the evening service.

Saturday night I preached on ‘The Message of Deliverance‘ at ‘Spirit & Truth Tabernacle‘ (Bro. Jack Duff – Pastor) for their watch-night service. It was wonderful to see all of our dear friends at ‘Spirit & Truth‘ again.
Bro. Smiley, and many of the saints from ‘Bible Truth Tabernacle‘ in Okeechobee were able to attend the service as well, and we had a wonderful time bringing in the new year in the presence of the LORD. 

Sunday, January 1st, 2012

New Year’s Day (West Palm Beach & Sarasota, FL)

After a few hours of sleep we returned to ‘Spirit & Truth Tabernacle‘, and I preached on ‘Be It Unto Me (According To They Word)‘. The LORD blessed both services at ‘Spirit & Truth‘ tremendously.

Immediately after service we drove to Myakka / Sarasota where I preached on ‘Finding The Little Shoe‘ for the afternoon service at the ‘House Of Fellowship‘ (Bro. Danny Stemen – Pastor). The saints responded to the message, and we truly enjoyed our time of fellowship there.

The church in Myakka is beautiful, and the character of the people certainly match it’s beauty. 

(63-0317M) Jeffersonville, IN
May it be a consecrated place to our Lord, a consecrated people, for no matter how beautiful the structure is (that we certainly do appreciate), the beauty of the church is the character of the people. I trust it’ll always be a house of God of beauty.” 

Monday, January 2nd, 2012
(Sarasota & Tampa, FL)

We checked out of our hotel in Sarasota, drove to Tampa to drop my parents off at the airport, and began the long drive home. We stopped at a hotel a little earlier than planned because the wind was very severe, and the children were fussy & ready to stop. 

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012 
(Atlanta, GA & Huntsville, AL)

On Tuesday we made a couple of slight detours to meet some precious friends for lunch near Atlanta, GA, and some more for supper in Huntsville, AL. It was very nice to spend some time with brothers and sisters of like precious faith, and it helped break up the trip home for our children (and their very tired parents).

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 
(Jeffersonville, IN)

After running into some bad traffic in Nashville we made it home on Wednesday evening. When we pulled into the driveway we had driven almost exactly 2,800 miles since leaving home on Christmas Eve.

We appreciate the hospitality & Christian love that was shown to us at every stop along the way. It was a blessing to see our old friends, and to meet many new ones as well.

The LORD blessed the services, our time of fellowship with believers from many different churches, and our time vacationing as a family far beyond what we could have ever imagined.

… unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.” (I Timothy 1:17)

– Bro. Nathan

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