Holy Stubbornness: Don’t Quit on Your Calling

Building a house of prayer is NOT easy. I’ve heard multiple leaders say it’s the hardest thing they’ve ever done–way harder than planting a church, doing overseas missions, etc. Really, the only reason this place is still standing is that years ago, God graciously gave us a holy stubbornness to NOT QUIT NO MATTER WHAT.

There are so, so many reasons to quit. When the money falls apart, the people wander off, the building gets taken away, other important causes demand attention… there is every good and natural reason in the world to quit.

In the “world”.

But we are not of this world. We don’t think like this world. We are not slaves to things like practicality and pragmatism. We don’t make decisions based only on numbers and logic.

We make decisions on faith.

13 years ago, God called a guy named Brad to start a daily prayer meeting that was eventually supposed to become a 24/7 house of prayer (this is TPR’s origin story). And then one by one, over the years, God called each of us to be part of it. Occasionally, He calls someone out of it just as clearly as He called them in. But MOST of the time… He expects us to plant our feet and not walk away from the thing He called us to. No matter what.

Of course we look at the numbers and listen to reason. Sometimes God leads through reason. But there are times, especially about the big things, when we need to set our face like flint and refuse to back down.

“For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.”
Isaiah 50:7

For us at The Prayer Room, that means first and foremost day and night prayer, 5:00 am to 11:00 pm with live worship, every single day of the week. We don’t take a day off and we don’t cut corners. We don’t cut the schedule when we’re running low on people–by golly, we’d invent human cloning before we’d cancel a prayer meeting.

For me personally, holy stubbornness means I know I am called to be part of the house of prayer movement. I make decisions based on that calling. I have discouraged guys from pursuing me because of that calling. I arrange my finances and my schedule around that calling. Right now, God has been clear that means full-time missionary staff at The Prayer Room. I do not have the right to decide to do something else with my life, no matter how convenient, attractive, logical, or even necessary other options may seem.

The pastor I grew up with, Pastor Danny at Water of Life, calls this “staying on your number”. Years ago, he used a sermon illustration of gym class at school where the coach would tell all the kids to stand on their assigned number on the gym floor. No matter how much you wanted to move or felt entitled to a more favourable number, you had to stay on your number. The phrase has become Water of Life shorthand for staying grounded where God has planted you.

Really what this comes down to is obedience and faith.

“And Samuel said, ‘Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen than the fat of rams.'”
1 Samuel 15:22

In the story of 1 Samuel 15, God told King Saul to completely destroy his enemies and all of their possessions and livestock. When the prophet Samuel showed up, he found that King Saul had done his idea of the right thing, which was to spare the best of the livestock for the purpose of sacrificing it to God. That sounds pretty holy, right? But God’s message to Saul was, “I told you what to do, and you didn’t do it. The excuse ‘I’m doing this for You!’ doesn’t cut it, because I TOLD YOU what to do, and this was not it. To obey is better than sacrifice.”

Obeying what God actually said is better than doing other good things for good reasons that are NOT actually what God said to do. God delights in obedience. It gives Him great pleasure when we trust Him enough to follow what He said to do no matter what, even if there are “good reasons” to do something different.

For us, that means we’re stubbornly going to keep building the house of prayer.

For you, it might be the house of prayer, or it might be something different. Maybe God has called you to overseas missions, or to a church ministry, or to a specific marketplace career. Maybe it’s your marriage, or homeschooling, or fostering/adoption.

DON’T QUIT.

God called you into this thing for a reason. You said yes for a reason. Remember what that reason was, and hold onto it. Unless He releases you as clearly as He called you… walking away isn’t really a viable option.

Get stubborn. Get iron in your soul. Get a flinty face like Isaiah. Get radically surrendered like Jesus in Gethsemane.

Walk by faith, not by sight.

When it gets hard, He will give you grace to walk through it. His grace is sufficient. He will not let you fall. He might let you come close, but His promise is that those who wait on Him will not be ashamed. I think that means that even if there are moments or seasons of pressure and even embarrassment, in the long run you will not regret choosing to trust Him. You will look back a thousand years from now and be so grateful you kept saying yes. Wisdom will be justified.

It’s worth it. Holy stubbornness that says YES to Jesus no matter what is worth it. Don’t give up on Him.

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Testimony: My Sister Got HEALED of Scoliosis!

This past week, my sister Elise came to visit me at The Prayer Room for a few days. We had a great time in the prayer room together, going to small group and Encounter service, treasure hunting through Texas Thrift, making the world’s best and simplest marinated chicken, and even visiting the Fort Worth Water Gardens and Sundance Square.

Best of all, Elise got a few very special testimonies! On Wednesday night at a small group, she received a prophetic word that was partly related to her ministry being tied to kids, that they would be drawn to her like to the Pied Piper. The next day, two little girls in a store bathroom struck up a conversation with her through the stall door and created an open door for Elise to minister to their mom. It was such a fun confirmation!

The next day Elise asked Jeremy, the TPR leader who had given her the word the night before, to pray for her back. Her spine had been curved slightly to the left for years, was very sensitive to touch, and had been informally diagnosed with mild scoliosis. Related to that, when she sat with her knees pulled up in front of her, her right knee was noticeably higher. Jeremy and I prayed for healing, and Jeremy actually felt the muscles rippling and moving under his hand even as Elise swore she wasn’t budging. She asked me to press on her back to test it out because previously even the slightest touch would cause pain. I then gave her her first painless back massage in close to ten years! When she sat down to test the alignment of her knees, they were completely level and even! We’re all so amazed at what Jesus has done for her!

Check out the video below or click HERE to watch it on Youtube (click CC to view captions).

Meet My “Chickens” – Interns and Externs!

It’s been too long since I posted an update here. A lot of things happened all at once, but I’ve finally caught my breath and can share some pics and news!

First of all, just to bless you (or click video link HERE):

In my role as head of the Forerunner Equipping Center at The Prayer Room, I serve as “mother hen” over our Immerse Internship, School of Supernatural Ministry, and any other student programs we may be running at the time. Right now, I have a total of nine “chickens” in my programs!

On May 27, we launched another summer Immerse internship! (Check it out on our website HERE.) This one is special because we completely revamped the curriculum to make it even more dynamic and strengthening. We have seven interns, most of whom are very new to our community and the message of the house of prayer. They are already encountering God and getting their minds blown by what He’s doing in the earth! Immerse includes 8 hours a week in the prayer room, weekly Encounter service, monthly three-day Global Bridegroom Fast, and five hours of classroom time a week. Classroom sessions include theology on intimacy with Christ, the biblical foundation of the house of prayer, LOTS of end times, practical how-tos for developing and sustaining a life of prayer, Bible discussion night, and community night.

We do Immerse both to help anchor young adults in the message of intimacy with Jesus and the importance of night and day prayer, and also as an onramp for those who may feel called to join missionary staff with us. Two of these girls (the two immediately to my left) are already on volunteer staff with us after doing previous programs. We’re praying that God would capture the hearts of one or two more to radically uproot the lives they had planned and choose to give themselves full-time to the vision of night and day prayer unto Jesus’ return and a great end-time revival!

Over the years The Prayer Room has hosted a number of IHOPU students who come as externs to experience a few months of missionary life at a smaller house of prayer, and several of the externs have decided to join us long-term. We did not expect to have any externs this summer, but at the last minute a different externship location fell through, and we ended up receiving not one but TWO amazing young women who are serving with us for eight weeks this summer! In the wake of one of our leadership team recently transitioning off, I’ve inherited leadership of our externship program and it’s great! Their first day was officially June 4.

Jarah and Christi are incredible and have already been such a strength to our team. Both have a passion to devote themselves to lifestyles of prayer to serve what God is doing in our generation and to see Jesus have His inheritance in the adoration of the nations. They are helping sustain prayer and worship in the prayer room and are also serving as assistants to division heads in two of our busiest divisions.

Other things that happened the past few months:

  • The Prayer Room hosted an IHOPU ministry trip of 20-some students for a week in April! I hosted three girls in my house, and they all served in the prayer room and around the city, leading worship, praying, prophesying, and ministering in the love of God. We love IHOPU!
  • Immediately after the IHOPU trip, I travelled home to California for a week to watch my sister graduate college and get engaged!! It was a very special and exciting week to spend with family and my spiritual community back home.
  • I joined a summer dance program at a local Christian dance studio! Every Monday evening (my ONLY day off), I’ve been dancing for four and a half hours in a rotating variety of styles with super kind and gifted teachers and students. Tap, ballet, lyrical, and jazz have been my favourites so far. I haven’t had a real dance class since high school, and it’s been such a gift to my heart to push my body to create in this way again.

Current resource recommendation:

A few weeks ago, Brad preached on “Awakening Our Hearts for Revival” and it was POWERFUL. We talked about some of the high points of revival history and cast a vision again for what it is exactly we’re praying for. It stirred something up in our community that we’re still figuring out how to ride the wave of… it really seems like God is calling us deeper in this area! Stream or download the session HERE.

“He is a real Person with arm hair” – IHOPU Graduation Speech

It’s rare that I post things on my blog that I did not write, but this is a highly remarkable exception. IHOPU celebrated its 2018 graduation on May 19. On that day, Mike Bickle, the founder and senior leader of IHOPKC, was supposed to give a speech. Instead, he gave his time to graduating senior Halie Benson, whom he had heard give this speech at the Baccalaureate the night before.

To all of this I can only say YES AND AMEN. This is what I also discovered through my four years at IHOPU, and what I am continually discovering day after day in our prayer room in Dallas.

This vision isn’t just for IHOPU students or full-time missionaries. This invitation is for EVERYONE who is hungry to know Jesus and desires to make Him their “one thing” (Psalm 27:4).

The prayer room isn’t about me making myself feel good. It’s about me encountering the Person of Jesus and becoming His friend.

Halie Benson IHOPU Baccalaureate/Graduation Speech

Full Transcript | May 18-19, 2018

This is to IHOPU students and OTI [One Thing Internship] as well, and to anyone who has a hungry heart.

We do not sit in that Global Prayer Room to subtly fuel our agenda for impact, deliverance of the heart, or even the improvement of life, although those things do happen. I do not come to His cross with my worst faults and perverted sins to confess so I feel clean. I do not sing the Word to make my heart feel. I do not choose to give thanks because it produces in me a happy heart. I do not study the Word because it will prepare me for when the storm of the end of the age hits. I do not study the Lord’s return so that I won’t fall to deception. We do not give ourselves to intercession to make a prayer meeting meaningful. We do not engage in the Great Commission by counting the cost and forsaking a self-centered gospel.

I have found: He is not my mascot. He is not my “buddy”. He is not an idea. He is not the means to my end. He is far different than I painted Him to be in the beginning.

We, IHOPU and One Thing– we have found HIM in the place of prayer. We talk to Him in the place of prayer.

We sit in the Global Prayer Room to look at and listen to Jesus . . . a real Person with arm hair. He breathes, He laughs, He sings, and He cries. His voice has tone. His hands have real scars that bring back memories. He smells I’m sure, but what like—I can’t wait to find out. We hear His Story and find ourselves invited.

We come to the Global Prayer Room to agree with the only Good Guy in the Story. We come to the crucified Christ with our worst faults and perverted sins to see Him more clearly and our hands stained with blood. We sing His Word to make His holy heart happy when ours are satisfied in His. We choose to give thanks because we are victims of His grace. We study His Word to see Him rightly and to discover what God is like. We give ourselves to His end-time purposes because we can’t actually wait to meet Him. We engage in the Great Commission because He desires them in patience, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

That Man on that throne is listening. He is watching. His heart is burning and it makes me tremble. He is the ever-living Godhead. A Person who has been alive and well for two thousand years watching and searching for hearts to incline towards His. The fullness of deity dwells in His bodily form and this makes the Father so happy. In IHOPU I have caught a glimpse of His Story from Genesis to Revelation. And sometimes, in the place of prayer, when I get real close, I feel His heart ache.

Oh, that I would be found His dearest friend. His secret keeper. His witness. His sister. His servant. His volunteer. The One who was with the Father and declared light to come and creation to sing–I talk to Him.

Yes, it is You, oh Lord. I have found You to be my Lover, and not my Master. You are FASCINATING, and You are BEAUTIFUL.

And this is the verse that I want to claim in my life, and I know IHOPU students as well and OTI students as well.

[Psalm 27:4]
One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the Lord
And to meditate in His temple.

Amen.

Prophetic Testimonies from TPR

It’s been a fun month for prophetic testimonies!! I’ve personally had four or five separate occasions the past few weeks of people giving me prophetic words out of the blue when I was least expecting it, and that’s not normal for me. (Yes, they were very encouraging and several of them were about the same thing!)

We’ve reached the point in our School of Supernatural Ministry semester that our students are ministering not only to each other but to staff and visitors as well. Two weeks ago, four students served 15 visitors through prophetic ministry. Some of these visitors had never even been to The Prayer Room before. They were deeply blessed to encounter the heart of God through the words of our students.

A couple came in with their son, who had a developmental disability. One student felt led to ask him, “What’s your favourite fish?” and said he saw Jesus grilling up some fish for him. It turns out, he was on a special diet and could only eat fish! The family was touched to be so known by God.

Another couple came in with a specific question on their hearts regarding a property decision. A student gave them a word about a property that was exactly what they needed to hear and brought so much peace and clarity about the situation!

Two students who were partnered together for the ministry time experienced a great flow of team ministry. Over and over, God gave one girl a picture and the other girl the interpretation. So many people were blessed by God using them both together!

My favourite recent SSM testimony was the student who came up to me outside of class and told me that she had encountered a woman who needed help with her car. She was nervous, but she obeyed the nudge of the Holy Spirit and asked the woman if she could help her, and then if she could pray for her! This is what it’s all about. We want students to encounter God in a way that it breaks the hold of fear and affects the way they live as powerful witnesses of Christ everywhere they go!

Prophetic Equipping Workshop – 65 attended!

On March 31, we did a Prophetic Equipping Workshop in place of our normal Encounter service. We had around 20 visitors on top of our usual crowd, and some of them were completely new to TPR. Andy and Jeremy taught on how to hear the voice of God and share it with others, and then everyone in the room gathered into groups of three or four and practiced prophesying over each other. My favorite stories were the people who came in skeptical, and were blown away that God would actually speak clearly to and through them!

One of our staff members brought her parents. She had been telling them for months about things that God was doing and how she was hearing His voice, but they didn’t really know how to take it seriously. When they came to our training night and started seeing accurate prophetic ministry in action, they were amazed. An SSM student gave the mom a prophetic word about yellow roses, and come to find out, she had actually been planting yellow roses just that morning!

Another young man who was not a believer came with a friend, and he actually heard the voice of God for himself for the first time! I don’t know what his history with God is, but he now knows experientially that God is real and wants a relationship with him.

The teaching from that night is available to stream or download on TPR’s Recent Messages page.

What I’m Reading: Growing as a Prophetic Singer

I’m a prophetic singer in the house of prayer, but it kind of happened by accident. I’ve had very little musical training, and when I first went to IHOPU it was not with the intention of being trained as a singer or worship leader. I had a few opportunities to sing on student teams (with other non-music students), and I had several excellent coaches who gave me some great encouragement and pointers, but it wasn’t until I became part of a smaller house of prayer in Texas and found myself leading worship with my meager skills 10+ hours a week that I started to take myself more seriously as a singer and worship leader. I still feel very green as a singer, and I need all the help and encouragement I can get!

Anna Blanc is one of the singers/worship leaders at IHOPKC I most respect and admire for her faithfulness and humility in singing in the prayer room for years and for her earnestness and Bible-centredness in pressing into God through her worship. Plus, she’s dang talented. Her song “Isaiah 42” (“You are the Lord, that is Your name/Your glory You will not give to another to be praised”) is one of my favourite anthems to declare the supremacy of Jesus in the context of His return.

We have Anna’s book, Growing as a Prophetic Singer, in our little library at The Prayer Room. I picked it up this week, thinking I probably would really benefit from learning from Anna.

Boy, was I right.

Anna’s book addresses the varied dimensions of anointing, excellence, and endurance that affect a prophetic singer. All three are vitally important. A person can be highly skilled without having that anointing from God that makes them a truly powerful prophetic singer, and a person can also be super anointed without pursuing excellence and the increase of skill at whatever level they may be. We don’t have to choose one or the other. God gives anointing, often in response to diligent seeking, and He also values excellence as an extravagant offering. And on top of these two components, it also takes endurance to persevere through the emotional roller coaster that is singing on worship teams for years–through promotion, demotion, and just plain mundaneness.

Here are a few of the key themes I was strengthened by in this book:

  • Stewardship over our gifting and calling involves growing in both anointing and excellence. As I said above, we need God to fill us with His Spirit, and we also need to continue growing in musical excellence.
  • God is glorified in our obedience and worship, even when we are weak. For the beginning singer (or the proficient singer on an off day!), God is still so delighted by our sacrifice of praise.
  • Singing to God alone in the secret place is so precious to Him. He LOVES hearing our songs when no one else is around! Those hidden times are often more powerful and transformative than worship experiences before a huge audience.
  • Both promotion and demotion bring unique challenges. When we’re promoted, we can easily become prideful. When we’re demoted, we can easily become offended (which also stems from pride). God strategically takes us through both to purify us.
  • Singing the Word anointed by the Spirit is POWERFUL. God moves so powerfully when we declare His truth in song. There’s really nothing like it.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who desires to touch the heart of God through singing, especially in a team context, and especially especially through prophetic worship in a house of prayer. (Really, a lot of it applies to anyone in ministry in general.)

It’s on our library shelf at The Prayer Room, so feel free to read it here at the base if you’re local, or you can pick it up on Amazon or IHOPKC.

BONUS — Anna has a number of videos on youtube sharing her heart as well as practical tips to grow as a singer, which can be found on this playlist linked here.

SSM Testimonies – Healed Achilles Tendon!

L to R: Makayla, Jade, me, Rhoda, Nikki, Walter, John

We’ve completed the first half of our School of Supernatural Ministry! Our six students (yes, we lost another since my last update) have been really pressing in to hear the voice of God and to minister to each other. We’ve done several activations which involve asking God for His thoughts for each other. I’ve been so proud of their tenderness and boldness!

Earlier this month, John, one of my students who is also a fellow staff member, shared a testimony at Encounter service: “Every time I’ve walked away from the teachings I get convicted; there’s a new holy ache and burden that my voice matters, this is important… And after that, we have a ministry time, and it’s been very fruitful for me and worth it—getting to hear the Lord’s heart over me, strengthening my spirit, giving me confidence. I look forward to every class to get re-amped… it’s empowering me and I feel it throughout the week.”

The first six weeks, our Thursday night sessions were focussed on ministry training. From here on out, we will be doing “real” ministry on Thursday nights! Last week, we started slowly by prophesying over each other. Everyone received several accurate words which built on each other, and everyone was encouraged!

On Saturday, we prayed for a student’s ankle. Her Achilles tendon was in a lot of pain due to a recurring injury that had been going on for almost a year and she had been really struggling in believing that God would heal it. She hadn’t been able to walk that morning. The pain dropped as we prayed, and by the next day, her ankle had no more pain at all! Praise the Lord!

What I’m Praying: Monthly Financial Breakthrough!

Continuing my What I’m Praying series, I’d like to share with you an urgent need that The Prayer Room is devoting the month of February to contend for. In 2017, our monthly finances took a $2000/month hit compared to 2016. We’ve been limping along for a while, but moving forward we can’t really limp much more without a serious financial breakthrough. We’re asking God to stir the hearts of His people (or the hearts of unbelievers; we’re not picky!) to commit to partner with us financially on a monthly basis. For some people, that might mean bigger numbers, but for others, that might mean even $5 or $10 each month.

It’s an amazing principle in the Kingdom of God that your heart follows your wallet. (“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:21) In the weeks before I graduated from IHOPU, I remember sitting around a kitchen floor with some fellow graduating seniors talking about the future and being emotional, and I’ll never forget what my friend Nathan said: “If you want to fall in love with each other for a lifetime, start partnering with each other financially.” It’s so true. I have given special financial gifts to many of my classmates, and I partner monthly with a good friend from IHOPU who is now serving at another house of prayer a few hours away. My heart is so much more connected to them all now because I have a tangible investment in what God is doing through them. I know for a fact that the ones God brings to partner with us will end up more connected to the vision of night and day prayer and more invested in the story of what God is doing.

This blog post serves a dual purpose: first, to invite you to pray with us that God would send monthly financial partners, and second, to invite you to become the answer to your own prayer by going to The Prayer Room’s DONATE page and committing to give monthly at whatever dollar amount you like.

We’re spending the entire month of February focussing on this need as a community. We’re strategising and reaching out in as many ways as we can think of, but most importantly, we’re mobilising the community to pray.

In the book of Haggai, God gave a promise to Zerubbabel the governor of Judah and Joshua the high priest in the days of the rebuilding of the temple after the exile. This is His heart to build and supply for His house of prayer:

“And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in, and I will fill this house with glory, says the LORD of hosts. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, declares the LORD of hosts.The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the LORD of hosts. And in this place I will give peace, declares the LORD of hosts.”
Haggai 2:7-9

We invite you to draw upon that promise with us in prayer. Below you can watch a five-minute clip of a 5am prayer meeting praying for financial breakthrough just a few days ago. (If the embedded video doesn’t work for any reason, visit it on our Facebook page.)

2017 Highlight Video

Happy 2018, friends! It’s been quite the busy holiday season… and when I got home from California and Kansas City, I was immediately hit with preparations for The Prayer Room’s School of Supernatural Ministry! Now that it has officially launched on January 20, I can catch my breath and catch up on some blog posts.

The first thing I want to share with you is my highlight video from 2017! When I went home for Christmas, I hosted an open house for some of my friends and partners, and I shared with them this video. I’m delighted to be able to finally share it with you!

Update: I’ve Joined Senior Staff at The Prayer Room!

Commissioning into senior staff on December 2 – video below

Here’s kind of a cool life update for you. A few weeks ago, I accepted an invitation to join senior staff at The Prayer Room!

Senior staff is the leadership team of The Prayer Room, made up of three men and three women (including me). We meet every Tuesday and address all the issues of building the house of prayer. It’s a close-knit team that shares the weight of leadership in many ways. When big decisions must be made, it’s the senior staff who pray and discuss until we come to a consensus.

Each of the senior staff is over a different division within the ministry. I will be keeping my existing role as head of the Forerunner Equipping Center, which is all of our internships and training programs. It makes SO much sense for the head of FEC to be part of senior staff, since FEC is such a big part of our vision.

Starfleet vessels have a senior staff… sometimes, commanding officers even dress up as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle characters.

When I was invited to a senior staff meeting a few weeks ago and given this invitation, it was a big shock to me. The team was very encouraging and called out many leadership-worthy qualities in me, even as they warned me of the weight and difficulty of being on senior staff, spiritually even more than administratively. They each could tell stories of the spiritual attack that has been connected to their role on senior staff.

I took a week to pray about it, and God was faithful and gracious to give me a confirming peace about the decision. For me, it was a decision based on faith and obedience. I realised that every reason to say no was fear-based – fear of the pressure, fear of attack, fear of my own inadequacy. Eventually, I agreed with the team that this was something God was calling me into, and I signed Him a blank check to my life a long time ago.

One of the things that helped encourage me in this process was the song Looking for One by Jake Hamilton (click for youtube). This has been one of my favourites of his for a number of years, but the chorus came back to me while I was leading worship, and I was able to find chords on my phone and play it right then and there.

Looking for One by Jake Hamilton

You’re looking for one
Who can hear Your heart beat
Who can feel when You lead
And the time and the season
You’re looking for one
Who will stand in the gap
Who will never look back
Finds Your heart in their freedom
You’re looking for one

You choose the broken
You choose the weak
You favor the humble
You raise up the meek
Blessed are those
Who are found poor in spirit
For there is the kingdom
It’s so hard to hear it
You don’t shy away
From the foolish and fumbling
You’re able to raise up
The tired and stumbling
And just when we think
That our work is all done
I hear Your heart

You’re looking for one

He’s not asking me to be superbly awesome. He’s just asking me to say yes when He leads and not look back. He chooses the weak, He favours the humble, and He isn’t afraid to use me even when I’m foolish and fumbling.

On Saturday, December 2, I was formally commissioned into senior staff at The Prayer Room. Brad Stroup, our director, said some encouraging things, solemnly charged me with 1 Timothy 3:1-7 (the biblical qualifications for eldership), and prayed for me.

The video is below, and I made sure it has accurate captions which you can turn on if you want/need them.

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