I lived in a house in Grandview with three graduates of the IHOPU program for about two years. I also went to a charismatic university in a nearby state before moving to KC. I never did a theological deep dive on their teachings, but my social life in KC was predominately IHOPU graduates. People who drank the kool-aid, and then went on to do truly incredible things with their lives. People I looked up to, who seemed to really love God and to love people and who cared about life-giving justice in the world. I remember going to the prayer room several, at the suggestion of the roommates. And I remember sometimes the worship sets would be all about just... worship. And those seemed so healing. But the sets that were for spiritual warfare type things, I'd always leave when they started because they made me feel kind of empty and uncomfortable (I have a severe chronic illness, and during this time my life was consumed by a kind of charismatic-Christian induced guilt that I couldn't "faith" my own illness away. So "spiritual warfare" type stuff made me feel disassociated, paralyzed with shame, and depressed, tbh. But I digress.) I no longer live in KC, but I've been absolutely engrossed in these IHOP stories because about a year ago, I experienced the breakdown of a co-dependent relationship with a narcissistic individual who spiritually abused me in a way that I see mirrored in these IHOP stories. She's more all-in with Bethel, but she's made week-long trips to the IHOP prayer room before. I moved to a new part of the country and didn't know anyone but her, so she offered for me to live with her while I sort of figure things out. Before living with her, I'd been experiencing some of the most joy and freedom in my life that I'd ever known. The longer I lived with her, the more her "dreams from the Lord" or prophetic words about my life would 1) scratch my unhealed personal wounds in a way that only a licensed professional shold have (and it just caused me to become SEVERELY re-traumatized and depressed) and 2) make me believe that she really heard the voice of God in a way that I did not. I now realize that, EVEN THOUGH I think she was operating from what she saw was real love.... she was gaslighting me, causing me to question my own reality, and causing me to believe that the only interpretation of reality, of God's truth, was viewed through her specific and unique relationship with the voice of God. She was one of my best friends for over ten years... and now I think maybe she actually struggles with clinical narcissism, and calls it "hearing the voice of God." I used to be one of the most insecure people I've ever met. The more I actually 1) read the Bible for mysel fand 2) have friends who aren't Christian in any way, the healthier my relationship with God, my own voice, and TRULY loving others becomes. I hope this for anyone who has been affected by all this trauma. I'm so sorry for what has happened to you.

- Housemate of IHOPU Students0