I got more confident in His voice, and then I got more confident in my prayers. I also learned to trust God concerning my daily needs.

Growing in Prayer as a Young Adult

by Adam Wittenberg
6/18/18 Training and Events

Although Riley Sliker grew up in the house of prayer (her father, David Sliker, is a senior leader at IHOPKC), it wasn’t until she finished high school and spent nearly six months in the One Thing Internship that she understood growing in prayer as a young adult.

Here, in her own words, Riley, 19, describes how God used the internship to draw her closer to Him.

Q: How did you decide to do the One Thing Internship?
Riley Sliker: Out of all people at IHOPKC, I did not think I would do OTI (One Thing Internship)! My father talked to me my junior year of high school and said he felt I would experience the Lord and see His glory in really special ways if I did it. He left the decision up to me, but I knew then I would do OTI when I graduated.

Q: What was your prayer life like before the internship?
RS: When I was younger, we would go to the prayer room as a family, but once I started driving I barely went to the prayer room at all. I was doing a few sets a year there as a worship leader, and I would go once a week because my friends were going, but I didn’t go on my own. Mostly, I would pray when I was in need, which I think is pretty normal.
I didn’t have a secret place with God. I was confident that He still loved me, in a way, but I didn’t feel that He saw me. It was my kind of identity crisis—I never understood that God would want to know me when there’s so many people on the earth.

Q: How did OTI help you get your own prayer life?
RS: One thing that was really stressed was that the Lord hears your voice and the words you pray matter—they really reach His ears and make an impact. It was also stressed how important the secret place is. We were taught that it’s like a daily meal: you don’t get it once a week at church; you have to have that daily meal with the Lord.

Q: What was it like being in the prayer room for 30+ hours per week?
RS: It was my favorite part of the internship! I was so encountered by the little things—the Lord speaking through the singers, prophesying over me—I was always hearing His voice. He would always speak to me through His word whenever I opened it. I began realizing my prayers really matter, and the Lord really hears them. Confidence that I really hear His voice gave me confidence that I could pray to Him and actually trust that He listens and that things happen. I got more confident in His voice, and then I got more confident in my prayers. I also learned to trust God concerning my daily needs. Now I’m praying to grow in the Lord more and let Him reveal Himself to me more, not worrying about the things of the world.

Q: What’s been the more longterm impact of OTI in your life?
RS: I’m not who I used to be, and I’m grateful for that! I am a completely different person, considering that I had no prayer life and now I do. I also know that God’s real. I always knew, because I was always a Christian, but now He’s done so much that I just know He is real and I’m confident, and I was not before. I’m way more confident in my identity in the Lord, which gives me confidence as a person, and I just know that the only opinion for me that matters is Jesus’ opinion. I know that 10,000 people who see me are not going to remember me (but He will). I feel more mature as a person, too, which came through living with other people (in the internship). I learned to control myself and not act out, and that what makes a person mature is that they’re self-controlled, kind, and patient.

Q: After your experience, what would you say to young people considering OTI?
RS: I had my doubts, but it was all worth it. It looks scary, and it looks like it’s going to be boring with the prayer room, but if the Lord opens the door for you to come, He’s going to do something. He’s going to work in you, and He never fails.
I know a lot of people who didn’t want to come, but the Lord kept opening doors and providing. It ended up being worth it in the end: they are changed for the better. Every single person that I have known, who has done OTI, says it’s worth it and that they know the Lord better.

And from David, her father:
David Sliker: I had very high expectations for my daughter, because I know our leaders and have seen the fruit over the last 16 years, yet the One Thing Internship far exceeded what I hoped and desired for my precious little girl.
Her response to Jesus, her hunger for Jesus, the quality of the friendships she developed, the character that was worked in her, the impact, the heart changes, the freedom in the Lord and her enjoyment of Jesus and His word all went beyond what I could have prayed for and expected.  I love how my daughter loves Jesus and how she has set her course to pursue Him after her season in the One Thing Internship (she’s studying music at IHOP University). I would enthusiastically recommend that every parent confidently send their young men and women here to encounter Jesus. I think that every young person should do a focused season in the place of prayer and worship of Jesus before going onto college and a career. What a foundation!

How can you grow your prayer life?

The One Thing Internship (OTI) is an extended season of training in personal and corporate prayer, personal and spiritual growth and development, and the establishing of what are often lifelong relationships, built around a passion for Jesus and His Word. Open to single adults, ages 18-25 (including internationals), this 5-month internship starts in January and July. Learn more about OTI >>

Adam Wittenberg


    A Detroit native who was raised in Vermont and Connecticut, Adam worked as a newspaper journalist until 2012, when he moved to Kansas City to complete the Intro to IHOPKC internship. Afterwards, he earned a four-year certificate in House of Prayer Leadership from IHOPU and is now on full-time staff in the Marketing department at IHOPKC. He also serves in the NightWatch (overnight prayer hours) and is active in evangelism. He, and his wife Stephany, have a vision to reach people everywhere with the good news of Jesus Christ.

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