During my 2nd semester of the music academy, I was on a worship team where we learned harp & bowl and did “sets” in the FMA trailers. Each team was assigned a worship leader coach. My worship leader coach was someone I admired not only because of their skill but their “heart for the Lord” as well. Near the end of the semester, I was homesick. I was ready to move back to my small town. I had moved to KC in the fall of 2008 at 17yrs old. At this point, I had turned 18. I was young and impressionable. I had told some of my friends that I was considering moving back home. My worship team coach caught wind that I was talking about leaving and they told me “there are a lot of people here who I wish I could tell them to go home and quit wasting their time, but you are going to be doing this for the rest of your life.” For the first time in my life, someone I admired validated me and my worship leading. When those words left their lips, I knew that I’d be doing “this” for the rest of my life. I don’t believe this leader meant to cause me harm but shows an example of why it’s hard for young people to leave IHOPKC. It’s experiences like this and words that are spoken from the platform. We would always hear things like “God is looking for those who give themselves to the prayer movement not for 6 months, not a year or even 3 to 4 years. God is looking for those who will be faithful for decades.” It was this messaging that made it next to impossible to leave. I wanted to be faithful. I wanted to please God. All I did was give 5 years of my life that I’ll never get back. I wish I had gone to a real college.

- FMA Student2008-2012