I realize this post is rather lengthy; however, it is worth every minute of your precious reading time.
To help you navigate our journey should you choose not to read it all, I have provided subheadings.
Yesterday, Evan, Billy, Kevin and I went to L.A. for the Passion conference at the Nokia Theater. We first arrived at our hotel, which is called Knight's Inn. We arrived at 4pm. The office was closed and locked (yes, at 4pm), but after a while, the owner appeared out of thin air and checked us in. Next we examined the extensive wireless internet network source that was cleverly lined along the wall, attached to the floor by clear packing tape.
Here's an idea of what our rooms entailed. In the guys' room, there was a total of 1 hand towel. They requested an extra bed, and she generously gave them a mattress and said she would be nice and give them some sheets, too. In my room, there was pretty much nothing. BUT outside my sliding glass door, there was a "balcony" of sorts. It was super weird. It was pretty small, and it was like a concrete dungeon with an opening at the top, which was at the roof level. I don't know how else I can describe it. Super weird.
Continuing on...to the THEATER
Yes, that is a limo with a truck bed. Last seen on the road as we were walking to NOKIA.
We ate at the Original Pantry something rather...it was alright actually. They took cash only, therefore the cashier was located by the door and was literally behind bars.
We all got steak, which was served with cole slaw. The picture is a little blurry...use your imagination. Watery, slimy, nasty would be three great words to describe it.
THE ACTUAL EVENT
The event was awesome. As a side note, Garth Brooks was having a concert right next to us, so there were plenty of hick-looking people around us as we walked through the crowded streets. The first session was amazing - it's always awesome to be in a place where 4,000 people are all worshiping the Lord. It's probably one of the greatest events that can ever take place on earth...and heaven is going to be even better. (I can't wait!) Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, Matt Redman, and Christy Nockels all did some worship stuff; Louie Giglio and Francis Chan spoke. The worship was incredible, like I already said. The messages were equally powerful. Overall, the event was all about God receiving the glory for everything we do. Themes of surrender, the pwoer of the Holy Spirit, and giving God glory filled the messages of both guys, and it was just amazing. The Lord really showed me that He just wants me to rest in Him and to find freedom in giving Him all the glory. I don't need to worry about taking care of all He has given me - He's in control!
God is so good!
We took an adventurous trip around L.A. We drove down Sunset Blvd, almost went to Hollywood, and realized that we couldn't escape the 101. We literally got on and off the 101 probably....4 times last night? Hm.
Evan also purchased Mentos and Diet Coke.
We got back to our hotel only to find that about 10 police cars were located at the intersection across the street from our block. The surrounding residential streets were also blocked of with police units, so we decided they must have set up a perimeter. Of course, the chopper circling above shining its light on the neighborhood was a great hint.
So the guys decided we should go outside and observe the action. I naturally went along. We stood out there, watched the chopper continue to circle...nothing really happened for a while, until a fleet of cops walked up the street and went into a building.
They left after a little while, only to return minutes later. Fifteen cops walked all the way up a residential street, out of our eyeshot, armed with shotguns and other such artillery. It was crazy. But still nothing happened. I was getting a little bored, and we were just about to leave...when suddenly, all the police units got called away. To where? Don't know. But it was awesome! About 25 (the exact number is unknown, but we settled on 25 as a good estimate) units sped off, some of them burning out, and literally hauled out of there to an unknown location. That was exciting. If you ask one of the guys about the story, they'll give you a much better, much more detailed version.
Yes, we tried the age-old Mentos and Diet Coke trick. Where? In the dungeon attached to my room. It went really high. I have no idea how many feet, but it was the best I've seen. Evan is a genius.
We went to bed at 2am.
Kelly met up with us today at the first session....it was all so good! It is such a blessing and privelege to worship the Lord and just to hear from His heart.
I'm stoked to see what He has in store!