A Divine Meeting Place
Imagine a place where peace envelopes you like a warm blanket on a chilly morning; where around every corner could be your next miracle, your next healing, your next encounter with a heavenly being; a place where others much like you are similarly seeking the face of God; where there is a hungering in your spirit to experience that direct connection between this world and heaven; where it seems no opposing force exists — just you and the mighty God you love and serve. This may be the nearest thing to our eternal home on this earth.
Beautifully nestled on the Brushy Mountains range in North Carolina, near the Blue Ridge Mountains, away from those things that can so easily distract from heart-to-heart time with our heavenly Father, sits this lodge and retreat center — a place where He can teach us His ways so that we can walk in His paths. As I describe the rich history of prayer and worship in this special mountain location, you may begin to see why people from all over the world are drawn here to experience the nearness of heaven and the wonders of healing and renewal.
This is what drew my husband and me to Moravian Falls for our anniversary getaway. We can recall being told about the falls some time back, but we couldn’t really say what placed it on our hearts to go there in early January as a late celebration of our anniversary. We were unable to get away earlier, because our ministry obligations would not allow. But immediately after fulfilling those commitments, we made our reservations and headed south from our West Virginia home.
We were fortunate to be able to book the Angel Cabin for our three nights, and we couldn’t wait to see what special revelation the Lord would unveil during our stay. Immediately upon exiting our Jeep, we sensed the overwhelming presence of the Holy Spirit, and the feeling of peace and serenity was almost tangible. As believers familiar with the presence of the Lord, this presence seemed to us thick, sweet, inviting.
Having reached the top of the mountain, we began our descent down a narrow road where Angel Cabin sat nestled in the woods; a babbling brook with its own little falls could be heard throughout our visit. A screened-in porch was perfect for our special time in the word and our thoughts of the Creator. The wind chimes would tinkle their special song whenever a breeze would make its way down into this secluded valley. (At another point in our visit, I would be blessed with a supernatural sound that still rings in my ear. More on that later.)
An IFA State Prayer Call from Angel Cabin
Arriving early on a Monday evening, I was scheduled within just a few hours to lead our weekly IFA state prayer call. I was so excited to be able to pray from this christened cabin and to share my location with those on the prayer call. That heavy, sweet presence could be felt throughout the prayer time, as the Holy Spirit gathered our petitions and delivered them to the throne room of heaven. We lingered in His presence as we finished up our call, having blown the shofar and lifted our hands heavenward with three shouts of Praise the LORD!
Rain came the next day, filling the valley with thick mountain fog and moisture. We made our way off the mountain to see the falls this area was named after. These falls are the location of many reported angelic sightings and similar supernatural events. Our own visit was marked by a divine appointment: meeting a sister in Christ from Florida, sharing testimonies, and keeping the connection God had set for us.
We welcomed an invitation to join the Fire on the Mountain time of prayer and worship that is offered weekly at Apple Hill Lodge. The prayers were “seasoned” with various language accents, as people from other nations were represented. Each prayer came from a child of the King who had his or her own relationship with Him. But that night we were brought into this lower room of the lodge for the purpose of edifying the Body and collectively crying out to our Father the cares and concerns of our hearts. Shortly after entering prayer, I felt a brush against my face. This was not the wind, and it was not anyone’s walking by, but rather the tangible presence of the Holy Spirit touching my face as He went about the room. As our time of praying closed and a time of worship began, our hearts were prepared for what I can best describe as a time of complete freedom of worship. Individuals from various states and countries and of different ages and denominations entered a time of praise that was unique and different yet done in perfect unity.
A Moravian Legacy
There is a reason that such unity and brotherhood among varied believers was possible: The Moravians who settled in this area were Bohemian persecuted refugees who had sought peace in Germany. There, Count Nikolaus von Zinzendorf permitted them to settle on his estate, providing them safety from persecution. This persecution had begun about 100 years before the Protestant Reformation, because the Moravians were experiencing the truth of the Scriptures and living according to what they had read and understood. This makes the Moravians the first Protestant group to move away from Roman Catholic teaching.
When they came to America, the Moravians first attempted to settle in Georgia. Later, they traveled to Pennsylvania and then back southward into North Carolina. They settled there in 1752, having purchased a 100,000-acre tract of land and naming it Wachovia. Afterward, the area would be renamed Moravian Falls — after the people themselves and the 35-foot falls in the area. Their legacy of prayer was established and generated through a great revival that broke out in Germany in 1727, and at that time they dedicated themselves to continuous prayer — two people every hour, every day, every year, for 100 years. Within the first 25 years, they began sending out missionaries around the world. They composed a unity agreement from which such phrases as “in essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity” derived.
This fervent dedication to prayer saturated this mountain for many years. Through their love of God and the baptism of the Holy Spirit, they served one another, but their strongest service was toward others. Having settled among the Cherokee Indians, their love and dedication for these Cherokee friends and neighbors were so deep that when the horrible Trail of Tears time in history displaced the Cherokees from their lands, the Moravians traveled with them. They supported, cried with, and even died alongside their Cherokee friends, because their hearts were so turned toward God and the service of others above themselves. “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13 NKJV).
Hundreds of years later, this intention to pray and to serve the one true God has resulted in a manifestation of the supernatural: an open portal to heaven whereby many who visit may not only feel close to God and sense His presence, but also witness miracles, healings, and even angelic activity. These gates or doors are portals God has established for direct access to heaven without demonic interference. The delivering of messages, healings, and revelations are clearer and brought with greater insight, that barrier of those wanting to interfere having been removed.
These Biblical realities are seen in Jacob’s dream, in which he witnesses angels ascending and descending on a ladder reaching to heaven (Genesis 28:10–18). John the apostle witnessed even greater things, having been invited in a vision to “Come up here” (Revelation 4:1) and see heaven and God’s throne through an open door. These Biblical descriptions of portals or access doors to heaven are marked by angelic sightings, great revelations, and special encounters. This place draws people from everywhere to experience the peace and serenity of the mountain, but also to gain a closer relationship and a divine connection to the heavenly realm.
At MORE Moravian Falls (www.moremoravianfalls.com), the eyewitness accounts are varied and numerous. As I’ve mentioned, I heard something that will forever ring in my ears: On three separate occasions, I heard a flute playing. It wasn’t playing a melody, but one long, clear note. Being very interested in why I would hear a flute as my special encounter, I find that Cherokee men would play their flutes as a special love song to their beloved ones. Given that my husband and I were there celebrating our anniversary, I consider this playing of the flute an appropriate encounter. Other common sounds in the valley are the playing of drums, footsteps, and fluttering sounds.
God’s Designs and Direction
Angel Cabin, Breakthrough Cabin, and Apple Hill Lodge NC are orchestrated with excellence by two amazing individuals, along with their staff and apprentices. Mark and Nancy Brown’s story is nothing short of one designed by God Himself. God will organize the most amazing journeys in our lives, should we allow His operation, and that is the way Mark and Nancy have lived their lives. They have journeyed from a life in business, to missionaries to Mongolia, to further education in ministry. In 2016 they felt the tide changing once again, and they waited for the Lord’s instructions. Their hearts were being drawn to the mountain of Moravian Falls. Up to this point, finding anything they could purchase in the area had been impossible, but as God would have it, they were finally able to buy their first property that would be their primary home. At that time, the Angel Cabin was also available, but having a large family of nine children, the holidays and any times during which the entire crew could descend upon the home would have proved impossible to manage.
God later orchestrated perfectly the purchase of Angel Cabin, and then of Breakthrough, followed by a meeting in which a stranger informed Mark through a word of knowledge that he would soon be purchasing Apple Hill Lodge: “Don’t worry about the money,” the stranger said. “God will provide.” It came together within a nine-month period, and Apple Hill Lodge became part of the Browns’ MORE mission: M … Miracles; O … wOrship; R … Relationship; E … Entertaining His presence.
This mission is that the Browns offer their portion of the location as a place to gather and to experience closeness to God, and as an open arena for breakthroughs to dreams, visions and interpretations for those with hearts willing to receive an impartation of the fire of God, leading to deeper relationship with Him.
For over a decade, this location has drawn some of the top prophetic voices for deeper insight and greater connection with God. Bobby Conner, John Paul Jackson, Mick Bickle, Bob Jones, Fred Brayson, and Rick Joyner are just a few of the names. The lists of testimonies are too lengthy to mention — on healing, divine encounters, revelations, and the reality of God’s presence while on the mountain.
To add a little icing: On this mountain top is Prayer Mountain. A short drive or a sturdy hike up the mountain from the lodge is a prayer deck from which one can see for miles. Chairs are set up sporadically along the pathway to permit visitors to linger in their communion with the Almighty. Everything about the top of this mountain is a welcome visit from heaven. All you need bring is a heart for God and an open spirit to consider the supernatural and allow His sweet presence to reveal to you MORE!
Have you enjoyed special encounters with the Lord? Share them below, and inspire others.
Get to know MORE Moravian Falls: MORE Moravian Falls Small Group Retreats and Leadership Retreats.
Contact the great folks at Apple Hill Lodge to book your next church, organizational, or personal retreat: Apple Hill Lodge NC.
For additional information about Prayer Mountain: Spiritual History of Prayer Mountain — Prophet’s Reward — Moravian Church (prophetsreward.org).
(Photo Credit: Canva)
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