BONA'S VISIT TO THE USA OCTOBER 2001
History of the visit
In March 2000 I was teaching a local lady tambourine, and whilst we were praying she had a vision. She asked me if I had any links with the USA, as she felt that the Lord was showing her a picture of me dancing and teaching there.
A few months later I was contacted by Rev. Lyrica Smith of Kingdom Arts International. I was invited to join the International Christian Artists Network, and to submit what I could teach at a future Joyous Praise Conference. I was somewhat overwhelmed by probable size of the conference, as I have only taught at small events and workshops in England. I am not formally trained in dance, having learned through workshops, experience, and guidance from the Holy Spirit.
In March 2001 Lyrica confirmed my invitation to teach at Joyous Praise 2001, and I accepted after praying about it.
The conference was postponed at very short notice from early August to mid October due to flooding of the venue. I was able to rearrange my holiday, and was planning to rebook my flights about mid September. The international events caused me to delay booking, but by late September felt I didn't want to leave it to the very last minute. I phoned Kingdom Arts to confirm that the conference was still on, then booked my flights. A few days later Lyrica contacted me to say that the conference had reluctantly been cancelled due to the insurers pulling out because of the international situation.
When the postponement occurred in August, the Lord gave me Matthew 7 v 9-11. I knew that God had a purpose in all this, and that He would not let me down. When speaking to Lyrica by phone after the cancellation we both felt that I should still go, and she offered to take me to a leaders conference in Atlanta. I also had Psalm 23, many people in England were advising me not to fly!
This was wonderful, except for the drive to London Gatwick airport. I got stuck in heavy traffic on the M25! Many people were praying for me, the flying went very smoothly, the weather was nice, and there were no delays.
My Week in the USA
On arriving in Cincinnati about 6pm, we drove south towards Atlanta to a conference at the World Changers Church. It was approximately 400 miles so we stopped overnight at London Kentucky. This London was a lot smaller and less congested than the one in England!
The next day we continued our journey to Atlanta, and attended the first session of the conference that evening. I was quite tired after all the travelling, but was really blessed by the conference. The speakers included Creflo Dollar, Leroy Thompson, and Phil Driscoll.
During my stay in Atlanta I met one of Lyrica's other English friends - Sir Anthony Buzzard. I had never met anyone with a knighthood before.
We had a really busy week! We arrived in Atlanta on the Tuesday evening and had to get back to Cincinnati for Friday evening. On the Saturday and Sunday Lyrica was co-ordinating dance for two Paul Wilbur concerts. I had (just) got over my jetlag by Wednesday, and was learning the steps to "Shouts of Joy" in the apartment we were staying in.
Shortly after arriving back, we were doing a rehearsal with Lyrica's "Revelation" dance group. We then had to go to the airport so that Lyrica could welcome Paul Wilbur and his team.
Saturday morning was more leisurely, and there were some special treats in store! I was priveleged to be chauffeur driven around Cincinnati in a Cadillac with Paul, Lyrica, and other team members. After this we had lunch on a riverboat.
The concerts were wonderful! I felt so welcomed by the "Revelation" dance group, and others. There was great freedom to dance and tambourine spontaneously, I particurlarly remember dancing freely to "Dance With Me"- this is on Paul's "Lion of Judah" album.
On the Monday I went home feeling very blessed by my week in the USA. I'm sure I will return!