SoM Testimony | Rebekah
Rebekah Eckhardt (previously Perdue) came to Catch The Fire's School of Ministry in Fall 2007, and graduated in January 2008.
Four years later, she is still seeing amazing effects of that 5 months in her life.
Here is her testimony:
When I came to the School of Ministry in the fall of 2007 I was broken and hungry for more of the Lord. He had healed much of my heart relating to a lot of past hurt throughout my undergraduate university experience, but there was still much that needed to be done in my heart.
I still vividly remember the first core month of the heart module. Realizing that I do hear from God and that He wants to speak to me was life changing! Growing in the prophetic and challenging ungodly beliefs still impacts me to this day. The revelation of judgements and the importance of forgiveness set me free in many areas.
"I will show up for you as safe, secure and trustworthy."
I remember talking about judgements with Jo, my AMAZING small group leader. She lovingly challenged me to write down the judgements I had towards men, to identify them and the memory of men in my life that had helped produce those judgements. I was shocked that my list was so long and so negative! My Mom’s numerous relationships while I was growing up modelled for me that men were not safe, their love was not secure, and I could not trust them to stay. This view had even been playing out in my own dating relationships.
I felt the Holy Spirit prompting me to write down and define three positive attributes for each negative attribute I had identified in men. I posted the positive definitions on my wall by my bed in the SoM. I remember eyeing the list in unbelief and crying out to God saying, “Father I do not believe men are safe, secure or trustworthy (the list went on...) please help my unbelief.” As if it were yesterday, I still hear Father’s voice declaring, “Men were created in My image. I will show up for you as safe, secure and trustworthy. You will know me as these things and you will be able to see me in the men in your life.” I was stunned.
"I gradually let go of my way and clung to Father"
Sure enough, God did show up for me time and time again in Toronto. As I forgave and released men from my past from judgements, I began to see my fellow brothers in Christ more positively. In fact, they began to see me more positively too. At one point on our outreach to Denmark and Sweden, Joseph, one of the team, was in tears, sharing how he appreciated getting to know my soft heart and gentle spirit, when he recalled feeling as though I was hard and intimidating when he first met me. What a testimony to the redeeming work of Jesus!
Throughout the SoM I continued to be in contact with a previous relationship. During that time, God spoke to my heart about the man He had for me, and it was clear that the guy I had been talking to was not him. It was difficult, but I gradually let go of my way and clung to Father, not yet seeing what He had in store for me, but believing Him. He told me he had fashioned a man just for me and that we were meant to build His Kingdom together and I began to believe it.
Looking back on that season still brings tears to my eyes. What a wonderful Father! In the summer of 2008 I met Michael Eckhardt, the man that God had for me. What a meeting it was! I could see Christ in him and recognised that he loved me the way that Father loved me. I oftentimes had pictures of Jesus kissing my forehead and Michael would tenderly kiss me in the same way! We have now been married for 2 and a half years and my heart continues to expand with love for him. It has been quite the journey and adventure, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
"I am amazed that I am living out what God said would take place"
While in Toronto, God also spoke to my heart about church planting through prophetic words, during the teaching on church planting and in my personal journal. This was the first time that I heard about church planting and all I could do was say “Yes” to Him. I had no idea what I was supposed to do. When I first met Michael, he was finishing his undergraduate work in Seattle and pursuing admission into a PhD program at a university in Bloomington. Michael felt that even if he didn’t get into the program, that he was supposed to move there to be involved in a network that plants churches in university cities. He was accepted, and we moved to Bloomington when we got married. We have been part of High Rock Church and just this past fall we became small group leaders for young professionals, graduate students and young married couples from the church. Looking back on God’s promptings in Toronto I am amazed that I am living out what He said would take place – that I am a part of a church plant. I feel that there is more that He will do with Michael and I in church planting, but it definitely stirs my faith that if He’s brought us this far He will see us through to the end.
Our journey has not been easy, but it has been well worth it. God has been continually placing passions and desires in me, Father’s heart compels me on. I am so thankful to Gordon and Cathy Harris for investing in the School of Ministry, and for all that the School of Ministry has meant to me. It allowed room for the Father to reveal Himself in such a powerful way. My prayer is that the School of Ministry team don’t grow wearing in doing good, for they are planting seeds that are producing such a great harvest!
Catch The Fire's School of Ministry has two semester intakes: spring and fall. For more information or to apply click here.
For those of you that have been on the School of Ministry, or taken part in any of Catch The Fire College, please share your stories in the comments box below!