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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I Always Took You Where You Needed To Go

As I’m preparing for the next major transition in my life (moving to Dallas!!), I find myself looking back over some of the previous turning points in my life. As I think is common for most people, a number of the things I was expecting to happen… didn’t.

  • I planned to meet my husband at APU… nope.
  • I planned to begin an acting career after I graduated… complete 180.
  • I planned to do OTI summer 2013… plans changed.
  • I planned to stay in CA after OTI… ha.
  • I planned to meet my husband at IHOPU… that didn’t happen either [as far as I know].

That’s the thing about making plans… they don’t always turned out as, well, planned.

Enter this golden Doctor Who quote.

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The woman, Idris, (my car’s namesake) is currently housing the consciousness of the TARDIS– the Doctor’s space ship/time machine. (Yes, the ship has a consciousness… just go with it.) The Doctor takes this unique face-to-face opportunity to accuse her of being unreliable:

The Doctor: “You didn’t always take me where I wanted to go.”

Idris: “No, but I always took you where you needed to go.”

In my experience, God is like that too. He most certainly had not always taken me where I wanted to go. If I had been writing my story, quite a few things would have been different.

But if I had chosen my own path ahead of time, I would have missed out on so much that was meant to be part of my journey.

If I had married someone I met at APU, it probably wouldn’t have been someone connected to the prayer movement and I probably wouldn’t have ended up involved with IHOPKC.

If I had gone into the industry as an actor… who knows where my life would have led. Again, probably not to the prayer movement.

If I had done OTI summer 2013 instead of summer 2012, I would have met completely different people and would still be in IHOPU, if I had even decided to stay.

So many times I had my plans and desires all laid out, and God knew what was better. I knew what I wanted, but He knew what I needed.

Jesus is really good and I trust Him. He has never led me astray, and He never will.

“The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.”
Proverbs 16:9

College Station Ministry Trip!

It’s three weeks after the trip, and I’m finally finding the time to blog about all that happened.

As I wrote last month, our IHOPU spring ministry trip to Houston became our IHOPU spring ministry trip to College Station, and although the planning was crazy, once we got there I wouldn’t have changed a thing. It was finally clear that God really had led us to partner with the College Station House of Prayer (CSHOP). We were there April 16-24.

The phrase He gave us for the week was “hope and healing,” and we certainly saw it happen! Our team was given a strong prophetic anointing and we regularly ministered to each other and to the people we met with the tender, fiery touch of the Spirit. His thoughts for us are more than the sand (Psalm 139:17-18) and this week He gave us a peek into His heart. Hearts were encouraged and restored, and at the end of the week CSHOP said they felt thoroughly blessed and refreshed (not common for a trip of this size!) and we were the best trip they had ever hosted.

I’m honestly so proud of my team. They served and loved so well this week. Here are a few highlights:

  • We spent the first night in Dallas with The Prayer Room DFW. I was sick that night and skipped ministry time to take a nap, but I loved getting to see them and see them welcome my team so warmly!
  • Sunday night we met CSHOP and helped lead their evening service. My co-leader Jesse and I both got to bring a word of encouragement. So many people told us that night touched them deeply – one girl even said she had heard the voice of God for the FIRST time!
  • We led prayer meetings with worship on the Texas A&M campus and at CSHOP (including a 12-hour prayer “burn” on campus!), evangelised with healing and prophecy on campus, and led a lot of prophetic ministry. We saw multiple healings and salvations on campus, and many people touched by the love of the Father!
  • Wednesday evening we split up and went to different small church groups. I took a small team to a college small group and where we led with a message, prayer, and ministry. We felt led to pray over the two guys that were there, that God would raise up strong men of faith for our generation!
  • That same night, one of our other teams prophesied over church members till pastmidnight, then went to Whataburger and prophesied over people in the restaurant! People were so hungry for a touch from God, and He delivered.
  • On Saturday night we hosted an event on campus called Ignite with worship, prayer, ministry, and powerful evangelistic preaching!

Even in the challenges of leadership and sickness (losing my voice while leading a worship-focused trip was frustrating), I was so touched by the love and support of my teammates. My co-leaders were phenomenal and a joy to serve with. It was an honour to be part of this trip, and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

My team!

My team!

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Road trip!

Preaching at College Station House of Prayer on an IHOPU ministry trip

Preaching at Encounter God service at CSHOP.

Our team leading worship at CSHOP

Our team leading worship at CSHOP.

Monday night worship in the campus chapel.

Monday night worship in the campus chapel.

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Evangelising on campus. (This is Taylor. She grew up in church but doesn’t know Jesus. Please pray for her.)

Prophesying in Whataburger!

Prophesying in Whataburger!

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Encouraging the AMP core team at their small group.

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Scavenger hunt on campus.

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Team hangout at CSHOP director Cynthia’s house!

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Our team sharing our testimonies with the entire congregation and webstream at IHOPKC. Click the picture to watch the archive of the service!

I Am a Worship Leader, But Not Like That.

When we say “worship leader,” we usually mean the person on the platform behind the mic playing guitar or keys, leading the room in verses and choruses to sing to the Lord. Of course, that is a perfectly legitimate picture, but I submit that that is not the only way to be a worship leader.

I am a worship leader. No, I don’t lead music from the platform, but one of the primary goals of my life is to lead others into worship. I can do that during a music worship set from wherever I am in the room, and in fact I’ve had people tell me for years that the way I worship draws them deeper into worship. When I let loose and let worship explode out of every inch of my body, not only do I encounter God in a very free and dynamic way, but I release an atmosphere of freedom and encouragement for others to let loose as well. If I’m fully engaging I will provoke others and bring them along with me.

You know what I mean. Sometimes when you’re in a distracted funk, just seeing someone else locked in and worshiping with abandon will stir something in your heart and spur you to press in harder. And another day you will do the same for them. That’s the beauty of corporate worship. We all get to lead each other by example.

Of course, this must never be from a “look at me, follow me!” mentality. Leading others into worship is truly serving them, because we were all made to be worshipers. For the rest of eternity, our primary occupation will be worship. John Piper has famously said, “Missions exists because worship doesn’t.” Worship is always the goal of everything else we do in our Christian lives (which, by the way, is your ENTIRE life). And as friends of the bridegroom, it is our mission to point to Jesus above all else, that He would increase and we would decrease. (John 3:29-30)

Leading others into worship is also such a beautiful gift to bring to Jesus. As an individual, I can give no more than my all, and usually even that is a struggle. But if I can play a part in others giving Him all their all as well, then I’m actually giving Him more than I could on my own! This is one way I can multiply my incense.

Of course, this means so much more than in a music worship set. I want my entire life to draw people into worship That’s the primary reason I write this blog. I pray my words will draw you deeper into fascination with this beautiful God, leading you into a life of worship poured out.

Why? Because Jesus is worthy. He actually deserves our highest praises. His inheritance from His Father is the eternal love and worship of the nations. He deserves it, and I want to play the biggest part He’ll let me in bringing Him His inheritance.