one thing 08

onething at    ihop

recently i had the chance to attend the International House of Prayer‘s One Thing 2008 in Kansas City… from 12/28/08 to 12/31/08

i left early from a retreat that i was serving at so that I could make it to the conference with some of our church people… after a grueling 20 hour drive that included a lot of sleep, eating junk food, crossing state borders, time traveling 1 hour, we finally made it safely to kansas city….

basically the first session that we attended was the one where mike bickle just went on and on about his idea on the end times and how he believes that it will come in the next 20 years, and how he believes that ihop will be a big part of God’s plan in these end times…

it was definitely something I wasn’t really all that familiar with, and some of my church people and I were all pretty weirded out by the things he were saying.  there were times when he got pretty political and started talking about abortion and babies and how he has a vision for 10,000 intercessory prayers and such… the bad thing about all this was that i felt like he was trying to sell his message, trying to convince people that he’s right, trying to get everyone to buy into his movement and his vision… i felt like even some of the scriptures he was citing were taken out of context just so that he could prove his points… it was really hard for me to listen to someone when he was coming out like this, and this pretty much set the tone for the rest of the conference…  it was harder to tune in to the other messages because i couldn’t get over this bickle guy… out of the ones i heard, i enjoyed misty edwards’ message the most, because it was more like a testimony… and it felt more personal, rather than someone trying to shove something down your throat..

supposedly OneThing conferences usually aren’t all strictly about the end times like it was on the one i went to… ihop is known to be radical but i heard the OneThing conferences usually have a variety of speakers talking about a wide range of topics… but this year was differnet because after Obama got elected, they freaked out a little and changed the whole thing around to be about end times, all in the last minute…

one thing that I really liked was the prayer room… the Prayer Room is based off of ihop’s vision of having worship being played, and prayers lifted up, 24/7.  there is a live band playing worship songs, which is streamed on the internet.  people can come in and out to pray whenever they want…

i had the chance to spend some time in the prayer room, and i was really blessed during that time… i just took a seat by myself and just immersed myself in the presence of God…. i felt like i could just sit there for hours and hours on…

another interesting experience that i had was the worship time, both in the prayer room and in the large group sessions… it was really different, especially in the main sessions, because they played songs that I had never heard of before, not to mention that they played each song for like 30 minutes, repeating certain lines over and over a hundred times… sometimes they would go into prophetic worship and make up lines as they went on… some of the song lyrics that they were singing I was weirded out by them… I can feel the rhythm of the lion of the tribe of judah… when they were singing that line i was like… what does that supposed to mean? haha

it was definitely a struggle, but it was a good challenge… I feel like most of us Christians are brought up in our churches in a way that we are so dependent on music to worship… we’re so hooked on sentimental lyrics and catchy melodies, which isn’t a bad thing, but we become so reliant on songs you know?  we quickly get bored when lines are repeated too many times, or when a song is dull, that we forget that we are worshipping, and who it is we are worshipping… worship is so much bigger than songs… music is an awesome way to express our adoration for God, but when we limit ourselves just to song, we are in big trouble… we miss out on so much more that God has in store for us…

overall OneThing08 was an interesting experience… Looking back on it now, and reflecting on it, i realize i learned more than I thought i did… it surely wasn’t anything like any retreat or conference i’ve been to, but it was good to experience something different… The whole “end times” stuff, I don’t really know… There is a day coming though, whether it’s 20 years, or a 100 yeras… either way I just know that everything falls under God’s perfect and unchanging plan, and that He calls us to live our lives out faithfully, and under grace one day at a time.  one thing that was for certain was the passion and the liveliness of the atmosphere… just seeing 15,000 people gathered to worship God, lifting prayers and singing songs… it just encouraged me that God was doing something much greater than little petty things going on in my life… but at the same time how the “little petty things in my life” have so much more significance under God…

well that’s about it… i’ll leave a little treat for you for reading down to this… sign into facebook and check it out. bye!

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/video/video.php?v=642009181353&subj=1572450127

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