PART SIX– Harvest Haven to Surprise Visitors (cont.)
As was often the case, I had many doubts and questions. On October 4, the Lord spoke to me. He said:
“Your son will not die. He will obey and live. You will not die. You will return to the farm and reign in power and glory. Your throne will be secure. I will establish you and your throne forevermore. Then will the world begin to see Me and I will do with you and with yours, as I have promised and purposed. Don’t be afraid and don’t doubt.
Son, you have nothing to fear. I’m with you and will always be with you. See the seasons? The winds, the coolness, the falling leaves? There is a season for everything. Don’t be afraid of the seasons, son. All things are purposed and timed. It’s all in My hands, including you, your wife and son, your children.
All that you have, I’ve given you and all is secure. Your losses are covered by the house. There is nothing you can’t have. I’ve blessed you and long to bless you some more, much more. You know how your heart goes out to your son when he restrains himself in his desires and holds his tongue from asking of you when you have instructed him to be silent. You want to give him anything you can… he needn’t even ask. I want to do the same with you, Victor.
Yet you won’t give him anything he asks because you love him and want his best. I feel the same way with you and more. Remember these things and trust Me, Victor, trust Me. You writhe in pain but I’ve heard your prayers and I will answer them. I am pleased with you, very pleased. Your faults and weaknesses don’t condemn you… they only tell you that you need Me, that nobody else can help you.
Don’t you know I know you’re lonely? I’m dealing with everyone at the farm and when I’m done what I have to do, I’ll summon you and you will all have a new beginning. I’ll do a new thing at the news of which all the earth will tremble and shake like a leaf in the wind. I’m placing and preparing each one of you.
Victor, look at what’s been done till now. You know you haven’t been able to do it. So with what will be done. I’ve done and will do it all. Rest; relax; take it easy. Remember the dream! Complete composure, wanting nothing. That’s what I’m doing with and for you and for all.”
Possibly the most common phrase I have in my journal is “Marilyn’s enmity.” Pages and pages of issues, disagreements, and battles between us are recorded. The following seems to capture the essence of what she was like at the time:
“I don’t know whether it’s my perversion or the enemy or what, but this morning I saw Marilyn rejoicing in her ways and despising me as a husband, as a person. I saw her as utterly, incorrigibly evil, so very selfish. (God, what am I seeing?)
I saw her as self-serving, calloused, hard – so hard – determined on her ways, adamantly refusing to acknowledge me, believe me, submit to me, much less help or rejoice with me. She sees me not as a covering, not as an authority, not as anything but a convenience and that, only on occasion. Either I’m seeing what’s been there all along, my eyes only now open, or she has come to despise me, a despising she would deny most assuredly.
When Jonathan changed his mind and decided to go to the farm with her after all, she was lifted up. There wasn’t the least bit of pity or sympathy for me and the little I have… and I know I wasn’t looking for any, but I did see that she only cared for herself. What an ugly sight!
Is this how we are with God and how we constantly make Him feel? Is it so, Lord Jesus? Or am I in wickedness, seeing things that aren’t there? Am I imagining things? Am I so perverse that I destroy all with my own bare hands? Am I causing a divorce? Are You killing the marriage? Indeed, isn’t it already dead?
I see no hope. She certainly doesn’t love me – or anybody else that I can tell. So hard, so bitter, but maybe it’s only me – probably is. After all, she was warning me last year of losing everything because I was railing on everyone….
Today, Lord Jesus, I ask that You deal with me or with her. If I’m wrong, make it clear; so with her. This can’t go on. She saw a picture of me crying, saying I was so wrong and so sorry. Lord Jesus, that may well be the case. Do not allow me to do her evil any longer, if such is so.
Marilyn says she can’t talk to me. Therefore, must I be an evil man? But if glory awaits me as she says, how can the two be? I feel I want to talk, to correct things very much. She says she wanted to talk to me yesterday, but I wasn’t in the right spirit. That may be; I don’t know. But I do know I want what is right.
Now does a God-fearing subject refrain from making petitions of a ruler if a ruler is dangerous? Esther’s attitude, when it could easily have cost her life, was, ‘If I perish, I perish.’ And she fasted. My wife, it occurs to me, is clinging to her life and is afraid that I will disagree with her view and position. She will not fast herself and has opposed me in my fasting.
She wants her way, seeing things with a hard, lawless, selfish heart, and refuses to change. But she brings on the false humility, the mousy meekness, that feminine softness – until provoked. Then I see Jezebel, Ahab’s wife – vicious, uncompromising, cold-blooded, ruthless, and utterly lawless. Jezebel was a law unto herself. Marilyn is a law unto herself.
And didn’t Jezebel do things for Ahab? Marilyn thinks to be that submissive wife because she does some things for me – cooking, laundry, and such, but those she does for herself – it is part of her control, therapy, domain, and custom…. To be a helpmate to husband is not her desire or purpose. In fact, such is an abomination to her as were shepherds to Egyptians in Jacob’s day.
This woman seeks out power and glory and will stop at nothing to have it. Yet the others can’t see her. She deceives them. Her ways are so charming and desirable to them, while mine most definitely aren’t. Then, if I’m wrong and cause discord at the farm by expressing what I see (do I flatter myself thinking they would believe me?), all will fall apart – so I think – and Marilyn will be crushed and I’m so afraid of such a thing.
Yet, does someone this hard and stubborn get crushed? If so, might it not possibly be a good thing? God, if I ever needed Your wisdom, as did Solomon with the two harlots, it’s now. Give me, I pray, wisdom to deal justly and truly here.
Then I think, ‘If I want such respect, devotion, obeisance, I must earn it.’ But did Ahasuerus earn it? Maybe. Are not kings and rulers placed by God and not by might or deserving? Is it not by election, as with Pharaoh (Romans 9) and not by works that any man should boast? Must I be God for her to submit? Didn’t they despise God because He appeared as a man – an uncomely one at that – poor, uneducated, alone, sorrowful, and low-classed?
I think the Lord is dealing with lawless natures, which only pretend to be holy and law-abiding. He, the Light, is exposing ‘that wicked one’ in our midst. Lord, do it!
Abraham bows before the three men, and Sarah calls Abraham ‘lord’; Jacob bows before Esau (though Esau was not righteous); Joseph’s brothers bowed before him as ruler; and Solomon bowed before his mother. Do I look for what we might call antiquated customs or spirits? Do I seek glory and obeisance of others? I don’t think so. In fact, I know otherwise. I allow my son many things I ought not if I were seeking ‘respect.’ No, there’s more, much more to it all.
When Marilyn came home today, I was glad to see her. She didn’t appear to be glad to be home. We couldn’t spend more than a few minutes before bedtime and sparks flew. She got angry and combative while I questioned a situation and I was accused of being defensive.”
Marilyn had a vision in 1997, wherein she saw us as grain in a winnowing basket being tossed up into the air. There was no assurance as to who was going to land where.
Paul and I drove to Creston with the farm’s large gray Ford passenger van with a trailer to pick up a hundred boxes of apples from Elvin and Wilma Strand. They had just purchased an orchard and produced a crop of first-year-transitional-organic Jonagolds, MacIntoshes, and Spartans. They received us warmly, we helped them harvest some apples and walnuts (the best I’ve ever tasted), and they gave us lodging for the night.
Elvin and Wilma professed faith in Christ. We talked about the baptism in the Holy Spirit, God’s sovereignty, the church systems, and more. As we talked that evening, Elvin seemed to be holding back while Wilma said she wanted all she could have in the Lord. Do we pray for her only? Wilma spoke of having fear. It didn’t occur to me that we should pray that she receive the Spirit.
The next day, Wilma said her fear was gone and Elvin said he wanted to receive the Spirit. Paul, however, received, “Not yet,” or, “Not now,” so we weren’t free to pray that Elvin receive. I think we weren’t in the right place ourselves as much as the Strands were not. But if Paul heard correctly, those words would seem to promise that one day we could pray for them to receive the Spirit. We left on good terms, though I suspected the Strands wondered about our doctrine and us. Later, I sent them the paper, The Baptism in the Holy Spirit. By God’s grace, we would cross paths again.
On our drive home in the rain, Paul asked me a question: “Did Marilyn tell you that she made a public announcement at the farm, and what it was?”
“What are you talking about, Paul?”
“She told us that you gave her a choice, that she had to choose between you and Sean as husband. Did you know that she made that choice?”
“I gave her that choice some time ago. She said I was her husband, but I hadn’t heard anything more about it from her. Why?” I replied.
Paul reported, “You didn’t say anything or seem to act like you had heard anything, so I think I have to tell you. I thought she would. She asked to meet with us because she had something to say. Lois, Chris, Nathan, Sean, Kerri, and I were there. She announced that she was choosing Sean as her husband.”
I’ve been shocked a few times in my life and this was one of those times. Marilyn had told Paul the decision I required her to make, Paul replied that she needed to make that decision, and she soon announced publicly, with Sean present, that she chose Sean. She said nothing to me about it. My journal record:
“I feel so foolish, so betrayed. She has been utterly treacherous and deceitful with me. Lord, it hurts. She follows her course and continues to be hypocritical, calling me ‘Dad’ and ‘Dear.’ I have lain with her and confided to her, but I see I can no longer do so. Indeed, she has made her position known publicly, excluding me, though I have felt it all along. Lord, I sure hurt.”
At that time, the Lord said to me, “Let it happen.”
For a time Lois stood with Marilyn in believing I would die physically and Marilyn would be marrying Sean. I learned that Lois had also taken on the task of studying procedures for preparing my funeral, like shopping for a plot, a casket, and making any necessary arrangements, legal or otherwise. Then for a short while, Lois seemed to see things and change her mind, according to prophetic words I had for her saying she would be seeing things (as they are).
Now Paul told me Lois had the spade out again, choosing to believe Marilyn once more. My journal record:
“I feel so very sad today – not angry, not bitter – just sad, perhaps defeated. They all say I’m dead. I hear and prophesy otherwise. I see visions otherwise.
Lord, am I deceived? I can’t see going back to the farm, not with Marilyn, Sean, Lois, and Paul. I can’t see it. I’m dead, aren’t I? As Nabal, whose heart was turned to stone? Sadness remains, with a sure conviction I deserve all that I get….
Lord, You can have my wife to do with as You choose. I realize today that I’m certainly willing to give her up for what You choose for me. Lord, will You have mercy on us? On Marilyn at least? On them at least, if not on me, Lord? Grant me to be that ‘scapegoat’ unless there is some other way…. Marilyn makes a choice for Sean while I live. What am I to do?
Lord, unless You save us, unless You intervene, we’re done for…. Why, my God, why are all these things happening? It is utterly horrible! Things are so strange, so out of place, so wrong… and all over what? My money? ‘My’ money? There’s my wife – supposed to be a ‘keeper at home’ – running the farm and publicly focusing on a man other than her husband, afraid of what her husband may think or feel, and so won’t divulge to him what she does – afraid to hurt him, she says. And she goes on doing these things, convinced she’s led of God.
Lord, I can’t say I am innocent. I know I’m not. Is there no turning, no repentance, no mercy, no hope? Can’t I change? Can’t she change? And what of the others? How long can they bear these things and all my horrible ways, interfering, scolding, and groveling in my own trials?
If I can’t lead, or shouldn’t, then the least I should do is allow the one(s) that should, without hindrance, else all will be lost for all. Will it not be a great gain, a liberation for everyone to be free of me, the farm, the hardships, peon labor, the conflicts of living under the same roof with others? Is it right to see many under one roof? Everything we’re doing seems my doing, for money, for my belly – food – and everybody is starving to death!
God, please tell me what to do…! Let me hear from Your lips what it is I must do that’s right, that it may be well for all those who love Your Name. Tell me, Lord, I pray! I have no ill will whatsoever towards Marilyn.
Marilyn called. They’re all happy at the farm, as though nothing is wrong. Lois is impudent, very confident of her position. They are all fully convinced I must be wrong. But for all of them to stand together, handing my wife over, my wife going over and one of them taking her, all of them in league together, how can I do anything but withdraw, resign, and die? I’ve nothing left to live for in this world, and I sorrowfully know my son would go with her by choice. And she loves to have it so.
God, does this hurt! How can this be right? They all think that I must die, that there’s no other way. I still think it won’t be as expected, though I could be wrong. I believe the man of sin is being done away.”
My journal entry for October 14, 1997:
“I have listened to some very convincing, enthusiastic, bombastic, wildly excited preachers on The Miracle Channel in Lethbridge. They worship the Bible, the power of God, and the availability of the power of God. They worship worship and love to be worshipped. They worship the praise of men, success, prosperity, might, humor, numbers, and great size, but I don’t see that they worship God.
Yet here am I, Lord, uselessly sitting here, alone, doing nothing and having nothing to do, in sorrow, tribulation, and regret, grieved by money matters, farm, people, government, social, health, and family matters, and I can ‘t reach You, Lord.
Those preachers speak truths, which make me ashamed, like, ‘Believe what the Lord says,’ ‘Believe His Word,’ ‘Speak by faith,’ and, ‘Never speak doubt or unbelief because your speech of those words gives them power.’ How often have I been the Devil’s advocate, doubting, and expressing that doubt! How shameful has been my life!
Lord, those TV preachers are impressive to the world, loved and idolized by flesh and blood, and I wouldn’t want to entrust myself to them. Whereas they seem so successful, I hear blasphemy, lightness, irreverence, impudence, a proud and self-confident ‘walking to and fro in the earth,’ seeking whom they might devour.”
Sean told me he envied me! I was amazed. Yet I partly understood. Ironically, his envy encouraged me. I asked myself, “Do I have something enviable? Is there something happening in my life during all this turmoil and doubt and fear that is to be envied? Is God with me after all? Shall I lift up the feeble hands and go on?”
The only conclusion I could reach was, “Give thanks and accept the circumstances as from God. That is the very best I can do and the only things I know that are required of me.” I have heard the promise and am now reminded: “They that wait upon the Lord shall not be ashamed.”
I had a revelation of the parallels between the scapegoat of Leviticus 16 and me, in response to which Marilyn said I was a lost soul. The similarities:
The scapegoat was sent away into solitude, as I.
Israel’s sins were pronounced on its head. The Lord said I was required to lay down my life for the others.
The goat’s time was the 10th day of the 7th month. July 10th has inarguably been very significant for us.
It happened to be on July 10th, while unaware of the date, that I covenanted with the Lord that He take my life for the purpose stated. Thereafter, I could perceive the sin nature of those at the farm – particularly the older ones – Marilyn, Lois, and Paul – but also the others, as well as my own.
My feeling of condemnation would be understandable if, as the goat, I was taking a burden of sin upon myself. Jesus also, in His crucifixion, felt the condemnation. While He is the Sin Bearer, we enter into His sufferings with Him.
Marilyn heard I would be taken, but I heard that I would not die physically, yet we have felt that there is no contradiction. Well, while the first goat literally died as a sacrifice (representing Jesus), the second did not. Yet, did it not die for all intents and purposes… sent off alone, expelled, bearing the sins of Israel?
The whole community was led by the high priest, in agreement with sending the goat away. Our community, led by the Lord, is agreed on my expulsion. It comes in the form of covert rebellion. “Don’t tell us what to do or the way you tell us to do it; go away,” as when they crucified Jesus.
My wife led the charge, undoubtedly. Is this not that form of contradiction Jesus suffered? While He laid His life down for His own people Israel (His wife), they took it from Him “by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God ” (Acts 2:23; Hebrews 12:3).
Jesus came the first time, fulfilling the first of three Feasts, Passover. He then returned at Pentecost to fulfill the second Feast. The third is His complete tabernacling and mature manifestation in a believer, the Feast of Tabernacles. I enter the third Feast now, having entered the other two in 1973 and 1975. The central event of Tabernacles is the 10th day of the 7th month, the Day of Atonement, the day of the scapegoat.
Paul had a vision about this time, wherein he saw me seated on a bench in a small chamber, a waiting room. I was intense, firm, prepared, and confident.
Indeed, I have been waiting, and though I feel anything but how he describes me, I know his vision is true. For the third time, through Lois, I was told to accept everything, to let it all take its course. The first was through Jonathan and the second directly from the Lord when Paul made known that Marilyn had chosen Sean.
Often after visiting with people and having discussions with them on various issues, particularly spiritual and religious, I felt like discussing those matters further. They would work in me, so I would write.
Many have been the struggles I’ve had when composing letters to confront people on their sins, errors, delusions, and falsehoods. “Am I too hard?” “Is it my business?” “Am I judging, critical, or mistaken?” “They won’t like it.” “Am I a coward? Should I not speak to them personally?” “Am I making a mountain of a mole hill?” “Am I nitpicking?”
Did I have a psychological or sociological problem like the convicted “letter bomber” of Montana, Theodore Kaczynski? After all, his parents left him at the hospital as a young child for a short period, which, some suspect, traumatized him. I was left with my great aunt and uncle when I was seven.
Anyway, invariably, I couldn’t sit on the letters. I had to send.
Paul records: “I had a vision in late winter 1996 or spring 1997 at Harvest Haven. Victor was at the farm working on cleaning up what appeared to be wreckage from a storm strewn about the yard outside the dining room sliding doors of the house. He appeared worried and worked with a single-minded vigor and energy. Lois was there working on her own nearby, apparently without the same energy or worry. They did not seem to be working together.”
Years later, Paul comments: “I would add that Lois’ heart wasn’t in it because she was following man, not God. I saw this then as well, although I may not have been sure enough to interpret it that way.”
Paul records: “In the summer of 1997 at Harvest Haven, I saw a single leaf that appeared as two leaves joined in the middle, losing their individual shapes where joined. Then I saw Trevor sitting at the table, eating from an elongated, double plate. Apparently someone else was sitting next to him and eating from the other side of this elongated plate, but I didn’t see the other person.
I received that the first part of the vision pertained to Marilyn and Sean in an unnatural alliance/relationship. After the second vision, Kirsten, Trevor’s former girlfriend from B.C., came to visit, and we saw that he was still hanging on to her.”
On October 22, 1997, Paul and Kerri visited me at Moon River. They were concerned about their marriage relationship, and Kerri wanted a blessing from me. I had two things to say to them. One, there never was a blessing on their marriage. Two, I would have an answer for them “in a day or two” as to what they should do. (Both Marilyn and Lois felt that Kerri didn’t belong with us.)
Marilyn had a dream or vision wherein we were on a train, which was speeding toward a solid wall. She jumped off while I remained on board as it screamed to destruction. I was screaming, “No!” Somehow, it seemed the train was going to go straight through the wall.
Paul records: “At the end of 1997 at Harvest Haven, Kerri had a vision of herself strapped onto a gurney and being put into an oven. Around the same time I saw her in new raiment, in a vibrant, alive setting, her troubled countenance gone.”
In 1997 or perhaps 1998, Marilyn had a vision wherein she saw that she had polished a satellite that was now ready to be sent out. The rag she had been using was soiled, but the satellite was clean and shining.
She interpreted that I was that satellite and that she had done her work preparing me and I was about to be launched.
In all the time the Overbeeks lived next to us, they kept their distance. On the evening of October 24, I visited him because I saw he had written a letter to Alberta Report, an outspoken, controversial magazine operated by the Byfields in Edmonton.
I took issue with what Casey had said in a religious context, replied to the magazine, and delivered a copy of the letter to him. In the days to follow, I would be delivering him still other letters, responding to thoughts I had of our discussions.
It always bothers me that people make a profession of faith in Christ, yet reject me, who am in Christ. How can these things be? If Casey is indeed in Christ, why doesn’t he confirm evil reports before believing them? Instead, as he acknowledged, he and his wife shied away from us because hearing that I claimed to be a prophet, and they didn’t believe in true modern-day prophets. As well, they kept their distance because of what the Arnoldussens had said to them about us.
Now, I ask, who are the Christians with these sorts of attitudes and faith in lies? I suppose that is what angers me more than anything – false professors of faith who claim to love the Lord but who, in all their ways, despise those who are His.
Previously, we had contracted with Casey’s company, Silver Ridge Homes, to erect a building at the farm. Through some misunderstandings, Casey thought I was nickel-and-diming him, seeking cheap prices for purchases; he also accused me of charging premium prices for our produce. I understood what he was saying, but at the same time, he had no idea where we were coming from, and he didn’t ask; he only assumed.
We’ve all been guilty of assumptions, hopefully learning that assumptions are foolish and detrimental. In our visit, some things were clarified and it seemed that Casey somewhat understood or was pacified.
Casey said he wasn’t interested in my letters, saying he even left them unopened. Though I expected that far-too-common reaction, I was disappointed, as usual, ever holding out hope that people will be receptive. Instead of winning friends (converts to Christ), I was always making enemies. But I knew I had to speak. How else would they know? Nobody else was telling them the truth, afraid of being “un-Christian” and offending.
Paul called the Strands to see what was happening with them. During our previous visit with them in Creston, we left The Baptism in the Holy Spirit writing, seeing we couldn’t pray for them, thinking that perhaps they needed time to contemplate truths pertaining to receiving the Spirit. The following portion in the paper confounded them:
“I mentioned confession of sin to a man of God. I must be fair and straightforward with you about this matter. I don’t know of a man of God other than myself, not saying there aren’t any. There are so many professing to be men of God or pastors in official positions, and evangelists, etc. but who serve only themselves and their organizations – works and not God.”
Elvin said that when reading it, “A red flag went up.” While Paul clarified what I was and wasn’t saying, they thereafter kept a distance from us. I didn’t say there were no other true men of God. I said I didn’t know of any others, though that is shocking enough to most, who assume there are many. The fact is true men of God are rare. I was warning them of that for their sakes.
Often I was thinking I might have prostate cancer; why, I don’t know, except that there was so much talk about it, I was getting up at night to urinate, suffered an impeded stream, and at times my stool was penciling. I thought perhaps that was one way the Lord would take me, if I were indeed dying. The Lord assured me I was fine, but in my unbelief, I had eaten apricot pits, suffered for it, and went to Dr. Michael Pratt for an anal examination, only to find no problem.
Unbelief hurts, vexes others, steals hair, taxes energies, costs the taxpayer, is embarrassing, and most of all, grieves the Lord. Unbelief steals, kills and destroys.
On the morning of October 26, I awoke to Marilyn telling me that on the 16, she received from the Lord that I would die in 10 days. Nice notice; today was the day! Tell me sooner, will you? She said she and Sean were meant for each other, having a love and relationship that she and I never had or never could have. She said that they worked well together, and that Sean told Lois and her so (Marilyn and I could never work together).
I wasn’t alarmed. I simply knew I wasn’t going to die. I just listened and submitted to it all. Could there be any doubt she wanted me dead? In spite of the unpleasantness, I was slowly learning Marilyn wasn’t as spiritual as I’d been led to believe over the years.
On the 26th, I delivered to Paul and Kerri the message that there was no blessing on their marriage and I couldn’t give them one, though Kerri was pressing. I also knew there never would be a blessing, but I didn’t say it then, afraid to do so. Why? Unbelief, I’d say.