Lilly Maytree is in Alaska today...

Lilly Maytree is in Alaska, today...looking for adventure and divine appointments. Want to follow along? Enter her ARMCHAIR TRAVELERS PORTAL


What's it Worth?

And so back to our discussion on adventure. I have met few people who do not desire to have an adventure of their own. And while most of us live ordinary lives within a few miles of our regular circles, there are those that manage to break out every once in a while and actually embark on one. They can be disasters or delights, depending on the personality. Either way, true adventure (either good or bad, for there are both kinds) changes you, and you walk away with something of value, no matter which kind it is.

One of my favorite passtimes is browsing through Gutenberg looking for personal experiences of just those types of adventures. You find them in the oddest places. And along with such accounts, there are always gems. Life secrets that you can take away and use for your own if ever the need comes up. I think I just might share one of these every Friday, starting with this one here, which takes place after a harrowing journey through war-torn Europe that would have killed most of the rest of us. Here it is:

"I was at last about to arrive at my goal, and was in a state of wild excitement at the idea of seeing once more all my beloved ones. I should have liked to have gone to sleep. My eyes, which had grown larger with anxiety, traveled through space more rapidly than the train went. I fumed each time it stopped, and envied the birds I saw flying along. I laughed with delight as I thought of the surprised faces of those I was going to see again, and then I began to tremble with anxiety.

What had happened to them, and should I find them all? I should if—ah, those "ifs," those "becauses," and those "buts"! My mind became full of them, they bristled with illnesses and accidents, and I began to weep. My poor little traveling companion began to weep too. Finally we came within sight of Homburg. Twenty more minutes of this turning of wheels and we should enter the station. But just as though all the sprites and devils from the infernal regions had concerted to torture my patience, we stopped short. All heads were out of the windows. "What is it?" "What's the matter?" "Why are we not going on?" There was a train in front of us at a standstill, with a broken brake, and the line had to be cleared.

I fell back on my seat, clenching my teeth and hands, and looking up in the air to distinguish the evil spirits which were so bent on tormenting me, and then I resolutely closed my eyes. I muttered some invectives against the invisible sprites, and declared that, as I would not suffer any more, I was now going to sleep. I then fell fast asleep, for the power of sleeping when I wish is a precious gift which God has bestowed on me.

In the most frightful circumstances and the most cruel moments of life, when I have felt that my reason was giving way under shocks that have been too great or too painful, my will has laid hold of my reason, just as one holds a bad-tempered little dog that wants to bite, and, subjugating it, my will has said to my reason: "Enough. You can take up again to-morrow your suffering and your plans, your anxiety, your sorrow and your anguish. You have had enough for to-day. You would give way altogether under the weight of so many troubles, and you would drag me along with you. I will not have it! We will forget everything for so many hours and go to sleep together!" And I have gone to sleep. This, I swear to.

Miss Soubise roused me as soon as the train entered the station. I was refreshed and calmer. A minute later we were in a carriage and had given the address, 7 Ober Strasse. We were soon there, and I found all my adored ones, big and little, and they were all very well. Oh, what happiness it was! The blood pulsed in all my arteries. I had suffered so much that I burst out into delicious laughter and sobs.

Who can ever describe the infinite pleasure of tears of joy! During the next two days the maddest things occurred, which I will not relate, so incredible would they sound. Among others, fire broke out in the house; we had to escape in our night clothes and camp out for six hours in five feet of snow, &c. &c."…

These words were penned by Sarah Bernhardt, better known as "the most famous actress the world has ever known." Yet, here are a few of her own thoughts from the deepest recesses of her very own humanity. She craved adventure from a young age, and in her pursuit of it… usually found herself walking head and shoulders above most everyone else around her.

What an incredible thought that is! I have now put it on my "to do" list to read the rest of this amazing lady's memoirs, to see what else I can learn from her. Which convinces me, dear reader, that there is so much more available to us in this life than first meets the eye!

And now to work before a lovely weekend and a bit of rest…


A Visit From Friends…

Today I have had a wonderful surprise visit from my own dear writing family. All of them at once, and all with glowing things to say about my new venture. What's more, they even offered to pitch in and help me with the coming launch of GOLD TRAP (the first book with my name on it), even to the point of inviting friends from their own various circles to be present here on that special day. I couldn't be more pleased.

But there is so much to do before then, and we all sat down for one of our old brainstorming sessions to figure out best how to get everything done. Of course, I made it quite clear that it could not all be about me. There had to be something here for everyone to enjoy. Which is why I was absolutely amazed (and honored) that the Professor offered to bring an example of his new alternative energy invention. Which has little to do with gold or traps… but in a way, it does. It's certainly all a mystery to me. He plans on an actual demonstration that will…

Oh, but I'll let him explain all that when he comes back. He had to leave early because of an urgent call that the children had taken over the lab, again. Leaving the rest of us to discuss decorations and refreshments for the coming big day. All very necessary. Still… things tend to seem rather lifeless when he leaves a room.

A state only getting busy with work will help.


The Last Day…

Well, this is it. The end of my not-so-little experiment with adventures in prayer. It has been life-changing for me, really. Because while I have always maintained a "prayer list" of sorts to enrich my own spiritual journey, I haven't often taken it past the general God blesses, or prayers of agreement when people ask me to pray for them. And I have always been as surprised and amazed as everyone else when answers seemed to come from "out

of the blue."

But now I have found prayer to be a road which can be ventured out on much the same way as any other road, and with much the same results. Destinations are important (unless you have endless time to wander and are entertained by that sort of thing), there are hazards along the way, and sometimes even traffic jams. But the scenery can be spectacular. And -- as with other types of travel -- the trip is much more enjoyable if you share it with someone.

I have come away with some fantastic prayer partners, and feel incredibly blessed for having met these people. Besides the fact that results seem to come faster when more than one person is praying, there is that wonderful -- almost unbelievable -- scripture that states; "…if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven." (Mat. 18:19). Quite the guarantee. I admit I've put that one to the test over and over, and so far, have been unable to prove it wrong. Which says a lot for this day and age. So I would highly recommend people try that one out for themselves.

Taking time each day for the past two weeks to purposely venture out onto the "prayer road" to specific places has strengthened my vision to be able to see more than just what's in front of me at the moment. It has made me more aware of who I am and how much more I am capable of doing. I had no idea. And it has made me witness to the kinds of things that produce a sort of joy and sense of well-being that you can't buy even if you are a billionaire.

So, would I ever do something like this, again? Would I set foot on that road even if I wasn't making a public confession, here? What -- are you kidding? At this point my plans are never to get off it. Life is beautiful here, and the more you share it, the better it gets. Which brings me to the door-prize (I said, yesterday, there might be one). For some reason, God is answering all the prayers I have prayed this week in amazing miraculous ways. So, if you have any requests, let me know so I can pray for you, too. I want you to get in on this. I will take your special request "on the road" personally. Then stand back and watch, because you will hear from heaven. Oh, yes, and don't forget to let me know how things turn out so we can share the joy.

Now for the refreshments (I promised some of those, yesterday, too). So here they are… "The Lord bless you and keep you, may He make his face shine upon you, and be very good to you. May He turn His eyes to you, right now, and give you a peace and refreshment to your soul that you can feel this very moment." (Numbers 6:24-26… Lilly's paraphrased version)

Thank you for traveling a little way with me.


The Thirteenth Day...

Nearly to the end of my two week experiment with adventures in prayer, where I promised to report all that was happening, and so I will. A scientist makes detailed notations even of mistakes in order to be more exact with proven outcomes. I think the same accuracy is required here. Thus, I must now touch on a subject that might be objectionable to some. So, if you are of the more genteel sort (whom I dearly love -- we need all personality types in this world) you may want to skip this post and come back on another day.

The American Heritage dictionary defines adventure as: "An undertaking or enterprise of a hazardous nature" or "An undertaking of a questionable nature, especially one involving intervention in another's state of affairs." Which I also consider to be an accurate description when one sets out to discover adventures in prayer.

As mentioned before, one first finds themself on a particular "road" that is happily, and unhappily, populated with other travelers who are generally out for the same purpose. And while this road is not subject to time or place (in that it is instantly accessible from anywhere or any hour), it is a real road. More real, possibly, than all those others we travel on every day. I have pointed out that there are wonderful frequent travelers here who can be of great help to new or despondent ones, and the more often you travel there, the quicker you will get at recognizing them.

But there are other sorts here, too.

These are not so nice. They are enemies of your soul, really, determined to distract or waylay you from your true purpose here. They are not all monsters. No, if they were, there would be no problem identifying and avoiding them. Many are sweet and beguiling... offering pass times that are always quite acceptable and innocent on the surface of things.

But they are wicked underneath. And capable of such excellent disguise that they can often be hiding beneath the surface of your very own self. Those are the most dangerous kind. The ones who can convince you that there is something incredibly wrong (or unfixable) about you, yourself. Which automatically kicks you into survival mode, and you all but forget why you even came there.

That's why it is of the utmost importance that you make as sure of your travel arrangements for coming here as you would on any other vacation. You wouldn't head out without knowing your destination, would you? No, too many places to get lost in. Would you start without money, or other adequate provision? I should say not. And you would -- above all else -- steer clear of any known war zones where a person might become a casualty just by being in the wrong place at the wrong time. These rules are just plain common sense. Still, it is amazing how many travelers pay no attention at all to them.

The most shocking discovery I have made during these spiritual traveling experiments is that this road is the most dangerous there is in all the world. But it is also the most exciting, the most modern, and the straightest path to any given destination on earth. It is not for the faint of heart, though. And it is not a good idea to go there naked (you'd be surprised how many think that's the very thing to do). Even though there are many good travel advisories posted all around if you look for them. The best is found in Ephesians 6. The whole chapter.

However, if you are the type that doesn't like wearing that sort of stuff, or discover you really have no desire to travel in areas of this kind in the first place, you really shouldn't worry about it. Just be careful to stay closer to home, maintain all your support systems, and not wander off alone by yourself. Because we are living in dangerous times, here, and need to be watching each other's backs.

Which is all I'm going to say about the subject, right now.

Tomorrow is my last public day for this experiment, and I intend to sum everything up and tell all. There might even be a door prize. At any rate, there will be refreshments. But now I'm off to do some work before this day is entirely gone...


Close Encounters…

And so I am on DAY SIX of my experiment in "adventuring in prayer" and have come upon some very interesting experiences along this amazing road. The first being… I am not alone here! There are others on this road for various purposes, and most of them I have met are amazing people.

The first thing is, that you know them instantly. Maybe it is a recognition thing. Some spiritual sensitivity that sends a direct signal between your heart and theirs that tells you they, too, are prayer adventurers. Some are just starting out for their own reasons, and some of them are full-fledged "prayer warriors" with lots of experience. I find these people refreshing just to stand next to. When they start popping into your life in unusual circumstances, with increasing regularity… well, then you know for certain that the Lord is truly, "ordering your steps." (Psalm 37:23) A thrill all by itself.

The other people on this road are those that simply pop into your mind at the oddest times. Maybe you know them, and maybe you don't. Maybe they're someone you haven't seen in years, but suddenly, you are thinking about them. I find that is my cue to pray for them. So I do. I have made a mental list of these people I have been impressed to pray for. I feel a connection with them, somehow, so I maintain my prayers until -- for whatever reason -- they no longer need to be there.

Yes, I see it as a road, and being on this road has added an interesting new dimension to my life. You can get onto it from anywhere at any time, because time and distance are not applicable here. That makes three dimensions, now, I have encountered in the human experience.

Makes one wonder if there is a fourth.

This is DAY SIX.


Serious stuff…

When one commits to a serious stint of praying (for any reason) it seems that "requests" begin to filter in from the strangest places. But this is a good thing. When unusual little circumstances accompany the explanations of how they found you, then you know you are on the right track.

Today, four things are on my mind (or should I say heart?). One is a young woman with children who has been informed that she only has a few months to live. Still, she continues to take care of her children, and even drag herself to impossible events. I pray that she will have a miraculous healing, and that every desire of her heart (and she has a strong one) will be granted to her by a loving heavenly father. That same one of whom it is said, "All the promises of God in him (Jesus?) are yes, and… amen." (2 Corinthians 1:20) Oh, my goodness… if that is true enough for us to actually take hold of, it would change… absolutely everything.

The next is a man -- a wonderful man -- who has lived quite the long life already, but he isn't finished, yet. So, he is having some surgery on his tired heart, and even though he has never personally asked for anything from God… I pray that he will encounter the "peace that passes all understanding" (Philippians 4:7) That he will come face to face with our loving God and discover that his heart (and his heart's desires) have been just (no, more so!) important to the Lord all along. Best of all, that the best years of his life are still ahead of him.

The third is for healing that needs to come for one of the worst things that can happen to a family. This one I shall have to listen very carefully about, for at the moment, I can only murmur their names before God every time they come to mind… which is oh, so many times during the day. Something important, here, but I can't see quite clearly, yet, so will have to leave it "unspoken" at this time.

Fourth is a town in Nigeria that is having war waged on all the Christians there. Their homes, businesses and churches have been burned, and those that have escaped are not welcome to go back. But where do they go from here? The little remnant is seeking the Lord on a twenty-one day fast to see what they should do…

These are the things that have come to my attention on the second day of my "spiritual traveling adventure." While I don't know exactly what to do with them, yet, there is one thing that has become perfectly clear. In looking at these four incredible, serious, life and death needs… most of my own suddenly seem unimportant. Especially if -- even for a moment -- I imagine myself in any one of their shoes. Which I feel is clear evidence that I have at least taken the first step on my journey and found myself standing… outside myself.

This is DAY TWO.


A Daring Idea…

And so we come to one of my favorite subjects of all: adventures in prayer. I've had a few. And like any form of adventuring, once you have had an experience (any experience at all), you mysteriously want to try it, again. The difference between being a mental traveler and a spiritual one, is that you are "stepping out into the world" as opposed to taking it in.

I've been told it is quite possible to have an impact on people and situations around the globe simply by praying for them. But what if… it REALLY is? Well, if that was true, then I think my prayer list would have very different things listed on it. Don't you suppose if a "prayer warrior" was really a warrior, he or she would go about vanquishing enemies and setting prisoners free, instead of letting things go with only a couple of "God blesses?" Hmmm...

Perhaps I will make an experiment of the next two weeks, and record my results right here. I shall picture myself some modern-day Joan of Arc and set off to fight some battles. And if I get "backup from heaven" I'll let you know. Meanwhile, if anyone has anything specific they would like me to add to my list, let me hear about it.

Or, better yet, why don't you join me?

Two weeks. For heaven sake,we can almost hold our breath for that long. And what could it hurt? Things certainly couldn't be any worse for it than they are today. In fact, it just might be the most exciting adventure we've ever been on. Like I say, I'll let you know how it goes.

This will be DAY ONE…


Looking through the eyes of others...

Isak Dinesen once made mention of the fact that she was a "mental traveler," meaning she had gained most of her knowledge of foreign places by looking through the eyes of those who had been there, and written their experiences down. Not only is that a more ideal way to go to places which would be difficult to get to, it is also the way to avoid certain traveler's pitfalls that seem to hamper every vacation. Things like the price of gas or tickets, foreign languages, and petty thievery. It is also the only way to experience places that are no longer there.

In looking through the eyes of others, you do not have the sort of emotional stakes you can't back out of if things get too rough. For while it is true that having an emotional experience during reading has been proven to be almost identical to physically experiencing the thing yourself, we can still move in and out of the difficult places more easily. Such as taking breaks from Admiral Byrd's vivid images of being alone in the arctic, to turn up the heat and put the kettle on for a warm cup of tea. The same can be said of being stranded the two hundred-odd days during the siege of Mafeking, when the common citizens had to dig small rooms underground to remain safe from the constant shelling. But -- oh -- the bravery and fortitude of those people who not only had the ability to express their thoughts, but were honest about them at the same time. Truly, my idea of inspirational reading. The best I can think of, in fact.

The other interesting thing about looking through the eyes of others, is that there is no time element. For a mental traveler, it is possible to take part in exploring the jungles of Africa, travel west with the pioneers, and visit an archaeological dig all in the same week. With more intensity than watching a state-of-the-art movie. Because it is not simply that the authors have painted such a vivid canvas of their surroundings, but they have managed to give us a connection to their own emotions that acts as some sort of catalyst to another place and time. What's more, we come away knowing them more intimately than some of our own closest friends. Somehow (I don't know how, it's a mystery) they have managed to impact us with their insights and touch our lives even if they have already been dead for a hundred years. They have actually reached out -- traveled beyond their own life-spans -- and given us something of value that we can use for today.

Which is almost unbelievable.

Maybe mental traveling is more "impressive" than physical travel because our mental capacities are so much greater than our physical ones. And if that's true, then it stands to reason that our spiritual capacities must be even greater than those. If only we would take the time to go adventuring around in those areas, as well. Hmm... rather an exciting idea, actually.

Maybe I'll look into that more tomorrow.