In the spring of 2009, I was operating in my calling in a small level by discipling children at an after-school center in the inner city of Cincinnati. I was in love with Jesus, involved in ministry, and living in a community of believers who loved Him, yet I was about to discover how much more God had for me.
That fall, the Lord began to work on my heart. He revealed to me that my way of thinking, toward myself and God, was way off, and that I actually hated myself and hated the way God had made me.
That winter I ventured to Kansas City for the International House of Prayer’s annual onething conference, full of expectancy that I would encounter God and find freedom. Each night I received prayer about my self-hatred, and finally, on the last night, the mercy, power, and fierce love of God broke in. I was not only set free from hating myself, but I felt like I actually now believed in the love of the Father!
After this breakthrough, I discovered I could understand the Word better and experienced a change in the way I ministered to the kids I worked with. I was no longer ministering to these emotionally and sometimes literally orphaned kids with my own heart broken, because now I truly knew and believed that I had been given a spirit of adoption in Christ. Because the Lord was healing me, I could begin to effectively minister His healing to others.
I decided to pursue and love God with all my heart, and to apply to be a student at IHOPU, where I knew people would stand with me and pray for me to walk in the fullness of the calling of God on my life.
I am now going into my second year at IHOPU. I am truly so excited and thankful. I have experienced so much more breakthrough over this past year. Classes like Song of Solomon and The Eternal Glory of an Intercessor catapulted me into discovering my true identity in Christ and into the place of prayer. I experience an ever-increasing amount of faith that my prayers really are before my heavenly Father and that He really hears and loves to answer me. I am receiving tools for kingdom ministry and Bible training that will serve me for years to come. The Lord is so kind and His leadership over us is really perfect.