Power and Love
Hi, guys! I have something I want to share with you that has been a huge blessing to me. So for the past year, my husband and I have been regularly listening to an evangelist named Todd White. We have known about him for several years and always enjoyed watching his healing videos on Youtube, but this past year my husband started to really desire praying for people, and so we began to watch Todd White more frequently. Now, let me just say that this guy has got it down to a T. He hits the mark where Christianity falls short every day. Todd’s ministry is called Lifestyle Christianity, and it is centered around equipping Christians to be more Christ-like. Well isn't that a bit of a contradiction, you say? Yes, it is. And that is the reason so many people have a negative perception of today's Christians-because there is nothing different about them. There is nothing to make people say, "I want my life to look like theirs."
Todd encourages people to learn and know who their identity is in Christ and what power and love comes with that knowledge. He is one of the few people that preaches your true value in Christ and the authority that comes with it. In other words, he teaches us to believe what God's Word says about his children and put it into action by walking as Jesus walked and loving as Jesus loved.
"People are not an inconvenience; they are an opportunity. Now, what are you going to do about it?" -Todd White
So, a few months ago, I decided to ask my husband if he would be interested in going to Georgia for one of Todd's conferences called the School of Power and Love. Of course, he was stoked! So for an incredibly affordable $45 each, we were registered for four full days of worship, seminars, and faith in action. Unfortunately, we were unable to be in attendance the first two days due to our work schedules, and Hurricane Matthew which threatened to keep us home. But, we prayed and trusted God for beautiful weather, and on Thursday night after work, we took our 7.5-hour road trip to Columbus Georgia. We had hopes of what was in store for us that weekend, but no idea as to the full impact it would have on us.
Come Friday morning, we were up bright and early and ready to see what was in store for us, and boy were we amazed! Morning worship was indescribable for lack of a better word. To see hundreds of brothers and sisters in Christ in unison praising and singing to our Father was overwhelming. I can’t describe what it feels like to be in a place with so much of the Holy Spirit and love. I had so much peace and joy in my heart that I had what felt like goosebumps the whole time. What was even more awesome was being able to see so many young people ( between ages of 18 to 30-ish) on fire for God. Living in a small town, it is easy to forget how big this world is and how many people there are who love and live for the Lord.
“Knowing our identity is the key to walking out God’s kingdom. We are made fearless by knowing we are children of God” – Todd White
After worship, Todd made his way on stage and gave his usual testimonies that he experiences every day mixed with a powerful message about seeing people as Jesus sees them and loving them as He loves them. “ People are never an inconvenience; they are an opportunity. And every person you meet is heading towards eternity. The only difference is which one. And how soon? And what are yougoing to do about it?!” Wow. This revelation is so simple, yet so huge. What if we saw every single person, the way God sees them? What if we made others a priority over ourselves? What if we loved people so much, we didn’t want any to perish? (John 3:16; 2 Peter 3:8-10) And what if the person we pass on the street doesn't have tomorrow? What if today is the day of salvation? (Joshua 24:14-15; 2 Corinthians 6:2)
And so when it came time for “Faith in Action,” we were encouraged to go out and find people who needed healing. Now I will be the first to admit, I am an introvert. I love people, but I don't necessarily like talking in front of a bunch of them and I certainly don’t like initiating conversations with lots of strangers. In other words, I am perfectly happy staying home by myself so you can imagine how out of my comfort zone I felt. Well, as we go to leave I feel a “tap tap” on my shoulder. There is a young man about mid-twenties who bends over and says, “ Hey do you guys mind if I just pray for you? I can see the Holy Spirit all over you, and I just want to pray over you and your children…” eh…no children (written all over my face) “Well your future children, I just know the Lord has incredible plans for you” Can I just say, mind blown?! If that doesn’t encourage you that you are in the right place at the right time doing the right thing, then I don’t know what does. So this gentleman prays over us, and after leaving us feeling extremely touched, we go on our way.
Throughout the day, we were able to approach a few people on the street, but honestly, they said they had already been prayed for from “the others.” Praise God. How uplifting It was to know these other conference goers were walking out their faith with boldness! While we would have loved to have been able to pray for more people, it was a blessing to see that they had already received prayer. So, lunch comes around, and we happened to go to a little Greek restaurant where we ended up meeting a woman by the name of Florence. Florence was on her way out of the restaurant as I was getting my food and as she was leaving my husband just wanted to bless her with some money and tell her how much God loves her. Florence ended up talking to us for forty-five minutes about needing a job (which we prayed for and are confident came through) and her love for traveling. If our conversation blessed Florence as much as it did Eric and me, then I would say our lunch date was a spontaneous success :)
After lunch, it was time to head back for our mid-day session, and it was here that Todd spoke about sin and how we allow sin against us (from others) to produce sin in us. By focusing on our righteousness through Christ Jesus and living for His acceptance alone, we are able to reject other’s opinions of ourselves and stand firm in knowing how He sees us and how He loves us. When we can lean on our image to Christ, we no longer seek the approval from others, and we no longer allow sin's stronghold to stand in our lives. After this final session of the day, we decided to head home and get some rest for the long day ahead of us on Saturday.
The next day, we went to morning worship, and after the focus had shifted to our speaker, Robby Dawkins, we heard Robby talk of a few testimonies that show stepping out on Faith when we hear Holy Spirit and how sometimes, the smallest and most unrelated things can be whispers from Holy Spirit. So we did an “experiment.” Robby told us to find someone in front or behind us (same gender, so boys with boys and girls with girls) and to hold their hands and close our eyes. For three or so minutes, he encouraged us to ask Holy Spirit to show us something (no matter how insignificant it seemed) about this person we didn’t know. The premise was to go with our first “gut” thought (some call it our conscience) which most people immediately dismiss, but it is often Holy Spirit. Somy partner, Caroline and I did this for a few minutes, and when it came time to say our thought, I was so nervous. I just prayed, Lord please give me a word of knowledge for her. For some reason, all I thought was nurse..that either she was in nursing school or was an RN. Now please realize this is not the big audible voice some people say they hear, but rather the still small whisper we so often cast off as just a random thought. So I say, “do you happen to be a nurse? Or are you in nursing school?” Caroline says that she was not either but that she was in nursing school for about a year until she felt called to the missions field with her husband. WOW! How cool is that? Her revelation for me? Children.
Now let me just interject and say that children have been on my heart since I was young but since my husband and I married two and a half years ago, I have been desiring them. I have wanted children, but hesitant out of fear. Now, I know fear is not from the Lord, but that is for another post another time. So the point is that my husband and I have just been praying about if and when we should have children. So when Caroline says this, I start crying. Then she starts crying, “are you serious?! Oh my gosh, I am going to cry!" she says with tears filling her eyes. And so, I tell her how much I have always wanted children and how it has been on my husband and mine’s prayer list recently and how I had been discouraged thinking I would be waiting forever or never at all. What a great God we serve, that he is mindful of us and our desires.
So, This was the second confirmation I needed, and I just knew the Lord was promising me that I would have the desires of my heart. I didn't get a when, but I got a YES, and that made all the difference. Trip made.
Getting back to the seminar, after this particular exercise, Robby really stressed the importance of acting on faith and in faith. Fear of failure is the number one hindrance to spiritual growth and activation he said. But Robby tells us that failure gives room to grow and in turn pushes us to see more results when we act in Faith. By speaking truth and authority in every situation, we can access Holy Spirit at a deeper and more successful level. After lots of notes on authority and several testimonies on stepping out in faith, we headed out for the rest of our day of Faith in Action.
After the divinely inspired acquaintance with our new brother and sister in Christ, Eric and I spent the rest of the day with them walking around Columbus. * fun fact, Caroline and her husband had been married 2 years and me and my husband for 2.5, both in 2014 :) While walking around downtown and the Riverwalk, we were able to pray for people in need and just love on them and let them know God loved them too. What a blessing it was. We saw people’s hostile and suppressed demeanors change, and people be touched just by the fact that people were taking the time to see them. To care for them. To love them.
By the end of our trip, there were sooooo many amazing testimonies that came to fruition. Although I can't list everyone of them, some of my favorite testimonies include : drug addicted premature babies being healed of addiction, a seventy year old woman who had been confined to a wheelchair for 30 years and was healed and ended up walking herself out of a supermarket, a hardened criminal guilty ofeverything under the sunwho came to Jesus eleven years after he was incarcerated and a lost child in New York who was miraculously called back to her grandmother's side by one man’s prayer of faith. While I could never share with you all of the supernatural and awesome testimonies that were given, I am just still in awe over that whole trip. What we learned is something we will never forget, and who we met are now lifelong friends. Isn’t it amazing the way people from all over the country can be brought together for one purpose, one love, one God and walk away part of the same family?
We had such a life-changing experience that we are already looking into the schedules for next year because that kind of opportunity is unforgettable and irreplaceable. Come next year, expect to hear more amazing stories of the Father’s love and power.
I know that this was a long post, but I really encourage you to check out some of Todd’s videos and podcasts from these Schools of Power and Love; you won’t be sorry you did. Thank you for taking the time to share this experience with me! I hope you can be inspired by this post and encouraged in your faith!
“From my mother’s womb You have chosen me. Love has called my name. I’ve been born again, into your family- Your blood flows through my veins. I’m no longer a slave to fear, I am a child of God. You split the sea so I could walk right through it. You drowned my fears in perfect love. You rescued me and I will stand and sing- I am a child of God.”- No Longer Slaves, Bethel Music
In Power and Love,