There’s a Light Shining Forth
The Lord spoke to Jerry and said: “Go attend the Madison Christ’s Episcopal Church.” Jerry could not understand that request as he felt they were on a lower level of revelation. But the Lord insisted. And thus my story begins.....
It was a beautiful Sunday morning with church bells ringing in Madison, Indiana, at Christ’s Episcopal Church. I sat with our family on one of the well maintained antique pews in the historic 1848 sanctuary admiring the stained glass windows and wonderful pipes from the organ loft where the organist was in place to begin the service. We attended the second morning service which was well attended by parishioners who enjoyed a more vibrant service than those who attended the 8:00 A.M. service, who were nick-named the “frozen chosen”. The sanctuary was filled with Episcopalians, many who were Spirit Filled. My heart thrilled as the pipe organist began working his craft. I felt it a privilege to hear those wonderful pipes being played. As the Historic Service began, the rector led the progression of layman and altar boys down the middle aisle to the front of the church.
The congregation was singing along with the mighty pipes of the organ when something extraordinary occurred. A light flashed in the area over to the right of where our family was seated. I hardly had opportunity to think about that when the pipe organist stopped playing and was standing at the loft railing looking down over the people. He could not detect a camera amongst the people, and then realized that the light was not actually like that of a camera at all. We were told that ever since we shared our Shekinah Glory experience with the Episcopal Priest that parishioners claimed they were seeing angels and flashing lights appear above the altar in the church. This was not something the church pipe organist could accept as real happenings.
After church, he talked to some of the people about what had happened. He was playing the pipe organ when suddenly he saw a bright light flash over the audience. His first thought was that someone in the congregation had a flash camera and was taking pictures. Deeply instilled with church tradition, he was angry that some disrespectful person would break all protocol and use a camera during service. And even worse would be that a prankster was pulling off a trick that people would think was from angelic origin. Thus, he had actually stopped playing, got off the organ bench, and was standing at the organ loft railing looking for the person who had done it.
My joy of “listening” to the pipe organist who had faithfully executed his position for 26 years was short lived. Not long after this incident the rector walked into our music store and heard me playing “The Sound of Music” on a small electronic organ. He told me that their church needed a temporary pipe organist because their church organist needed a break, and just wanted to sit in the pews and enjoy the service for a period of time. I said “no”, as I did not feel qualified. He seemed disappointed, but I did not know the Episcopal service well at all. In a few days, he asked me again, and still I said, “no”. He asked me again, and I felt ashamed to say, “no”. Conviction came over me as I realized that God was calling me to accept this position, and the next time he asked, I said, “yes”.
I had a total of 32 phrases and hymns to get ready for the next service. People were kind and helpful. The wife of a previous rector sat with me during practice singing along. Others encouraged me, and Sunday morning found me sitting at the wonderful pipe organ I had so happily admired from a distance. Their regular organist came up to the loft to give me a tip or two, and wished me well. As he walked down the aisle into the congregation I watched as a ball of blue light bounced along behind him. I was amazed, as it actually seemed to be following him. It was clearly a witness to me that I was where I was supposes to be, and that his desire for time off was in God’s will. During the next few months we witnessed spiritual deepening and growth in his life. God works in mysterious ways, His wonders to perform.
HISTORICAL FACT: A tourist brochure guide to historic downtown Madison cites that Mary Todd Lincoln’s sister moved from Kentucky to Madison during the Civil War when her husband, a confederate soldier, was shot and killed in a battle in Lexington, Ken. She played the pipe organ for this church.
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