“It’s so good to see you guys again!” said our waitress.
We went back to the Thai restaurant for the third day in a row. Each day we have increased gospel conversations with our waitress and as we finished our meal, what happened next was amazing.
“One of our team members began to share “ Thank you. We’ve been excited to come back and see you again. We just want to tell you that Jesus loves you so much. Do you know Jesus?”
Covered in goosebumps, our waitress replied,”Yes, yes”
“Do you know what Jesus did for you?”
She nodded and replied, “What did He do?” As she laughed nervously.
We proceeded to share the gospel with her and why Jesus died for her specifically and us. We shared how Jesus really changed our lives and how He wants to change hers too.
The interesting thing is that every time we would say the name of Jesus, she would get goosebumps everywhere! Then they would go away, until we said Jesus again and then they would come back again.
Before we could even finish sharing the gospel, she said “My sons need to know this too. They really need to know because they struggle with alcohol and other bad choices. They need to know this right path.”
We then prayed with Patty and for her sons. We could feel the enemy trying to work against what was happening as another server came and got irritated that we were praying.
As we finished, she said, “Since I have lived here in America for the last five years, I’ve never heard or been invited to church, but I want to go, I really want to go.”
Continue to pray for Patty and her sons. Pray that her and her sons would come to personally know Jesus and find new life in Christ. Pray they would get plugged into a local church and be discipled. Pray for all the divine encounters we’ve had this week and for each seed planted to continue to grow and be watered.
“The Spirit is here and wants to do something special. There will be a foot washing station and as the Spirit leads, we will wash the feet of Jesus’ disciples, serving faithfully every week here in Oklahoma City. “ said one of our Awe Star leaders.
What happened next was humbling. One by one, the students started to submit themselves to Jesus and washed the feet of the four leaders from the International Community Church. The leader’s feet were washed; not only with water, but in prayers. It’s was a beautiful time of worship and it left the local team in tears as they felt overwhelmed with the love and encouragement.
Kirk, our partner leader among the OKC local team, said “My soul is refreshed tonight.”
Another local team member said, “I’m so overwhelmed by God’s presence, I’m speechless”.
We have one more day. Pray for our students to continue to walk in the humility they experienced tonight. Pray for strength and stamina as we debrief and finish strong with one more night of seeking Gospel conversations among the refugees, marginalized, immigrants, and unseen among the city.
“Oh you have a tattoo?” the lady asked.
“Yea, it’s a mountain. Do you know what it means?”
“No, but I’d love to hear!” she said.
“It reminds me of how good God is. Plus, it reminds me that with faith in Jesus, anything is possible.”
We had some time after lunch and so we found a Vietnamese Tea House. As we ordered our drinks, I started to engage in conversation with our waitress over my tattoo. It was an open door to share the Gospel.
She said that mountains make her think of peace.
I asked, “Do you go to church?”
She replied, “If my friends ask, I’ll go. If they ask me to go to the temple, I’ll go there too. But I don’t really talk or know much about God.”
She left to make our drinks and as she came back she started to tell us that yesterday, a group of four people (other members from our team) were in here sharing about Jesus with her.
We exchanged numbers with her, took a picture together and got to pray with her.
We believe that if God sent, not only one, but two of our teams to speak with her, that the Lord will get her attention!
Please pray for Piety, for her to fully give her heart to Jesus. Pray that as we continue to do Jesus ministry, that we would be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and His leading. Pray that God would give Piety a open heart and unblinded eyes to see the truth of her need for Jesus! Also pray she will call us to meet again!
“When we arrived to prayer walk the University of Central Oklahoma, my eyes caught a guy in a parking lot off in the distance. I felt prompted in my spirit that God wanted me to speak to him but he seemed too far away. After over an hour of walking and praying the campus, our team loaded back up to leave, our van was stopped and I noticed THE SAME GUY now walking beside my van. I knew that God was going to ask me to do something and so I looked away. Again, the Holy Spirit brought my attention to this man and I KNEW that God wanted me to give him my shoes. I wrestled with God.
I told God: “My shoes are expensive. I don’t have another pair. This is ridiculous. “
God responded: “Give this man your shoes. “
So I thought, if I’m supposed to do it, my leader will not stop me but encourage me to get out of the van. Can you believe it?? She told me to get out of the van and go for it. So I reluctantly got out of the van and introduced myself to the man. His name was Jacob. He believed in Jesus, but life had been hard on him and he was now living on the streets. As I looked down, his worn, calloused, battered feet were exposed in ragged old sandals that were too small for him. I asked him his shoe size and of course, they were the same exact size as mine. We exchanged shoes and I prayed for Him and got back in the van. God had been teaching me about instant obedience, especially when it’s sacrificial, as well as humility. I always want the best things and I don’t care about the price. Today, God reminded me it’s about humility. Even when I refused a month ago to do this very thing, God didn’t let it go but gave me another opportunity to choose obedience.”
This and many more stories like this, are ones our students will never forget. They are eternal, Kingdom centered, and life changing. The more our students reflect Jesus, the more effective they will be in ministry. Pray for our team as there are only a few more days of ministry left. Pray for strength as they lean into what the Holy Spirit is doing. Pray for continued divine encounters as they engage in Jesus ministry.
As the team prayed, one of our students called the cell number they had been given the night before by a Muslim lady. Uncertain if their new friend would answer, they knew without doubt the Lord had directed their steps to cross.
You see the day before, they had noticed her in the fish section of the grocery store. The team had been prayer walking and noticed the lady’s hijab (Islamic covering). Pretending to look at fish, they gently engaged the lady and before the conversation was over, they had exchanged numbers. Now they waited for her to answer the phone in hopes of having dinner together and an opportunity to share the gospel.
Prayer worked! Their new friend answered her phone and the ministry team was able to go to her house for dinner.
Upon entering the home, the husband asked our team “Are you happy?” They responded, “Yes, we are happy but can we share with you what changed our lives and gives us joy?”
The team proceeded to share their personal story of faith. After a lot of discussing they asked, “have you ever done anything wrong? Are you in the broken world “circle?” (this is from our 3-circle evangelism approach)
They responded, “yes”, and you could see how their eyes were being opened to the reality that they live in a broken world and can no longer justify themselves in doing good works.
This was the first time Abdul and Haifaa had heard the Gospel!
Pray with us for Abdul and Haifaa. Pray for their family to have dreams and visions of Jesus and for their hearts to be open and continued receptiveness to the Gospel. Pray for God to put more Christians in their path to continue to point them to Jesus.
One ministry team began their Prayer Eating by asking the Lord to speak to them in specific ways before they entered their ethnic restaurant. Each had an image in their head, so they wrote down what they felt the Lord had spoken. “One saw a little girl, another a little boy, and the last person saw white/purple flowers.” I know this sounds strange, but each team has been learning how to intently listen in prayer and to not discount anything they see as they pray.
As they entered the restaurant, they prayed again, ordered food, and waited. Out of the corner of their eyes they noticed an Islamic family enter. It was a family with a little boy, a little girl; AND get this, the little girl was wearing a dress with white and purple flowers!
One of the students felt led to go buy the Muslim family “baklava”, a traditional dessert, and asked for the server to not disclose he had paid for it.
The family was surprised by the desert and since the restaurant wasn’t busy, realized it was our team who had been so kind to them. The small kids ran over almost immediately to say, “Thank you!” which opened a door of conversation with their parents.
Amazingly enough they were from Jordan, and one of the team members had travelled to Jordan on an Awe Star trip within the last couple of years. What are the chances??? Of all the families to come, that this ministry team would have a team member that had visited the nation of this family?! It’s always 100% with God.
They were able to pray with the family, in the name of Jesus, and share about their own journey of Faith. This is just one of the many stories we have from today as we have sought to intentionally invite the Holy Spirit to lead us.
Will you join us in praying for Abed, Sarah and their children? Ask God to reveal Himself to them in dreams or visions and that they would not forget the day that a few young students bought them “Baklava” and shared the love of Jesus with them. Pray also for our students to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit as they continue to walk Immigrant and Refugee neighborhoods and Prayer Eat in diverse ethnic restaurants seeking Divine Encounters.
As our teams have set out to “Prayer Eat” defined as going to an ethnic restaurant for 3 consecutive days and seeking intentional Gospel opportunities, we’ve seen God move.
Our big team was split into 4 smaller teams and sent to 4 different places. One of our teams has been experiencing Pho, Vietnamese soup with noodles, and was really discouraged after the first day. They tried to make conversations with their waitress and she was really closed off to our students.
Today was day 2 and something shifted. As our team headed back to the same place, they had a renewed boldness about them and walked with expectation. They had the same waitress, Pham, and asked again if they could pray for anything and this time, she opened up. She shared about her family, a bit about her story, and was thankful to receive prayer.
We believe God is not done yet! The team will return tomorrow for their final day at this restaurant and are filled with anticipation for what God is going to do. Consistency matters. Showing up matters. When people see familiar faces, it opens the doors for conversations and opportunities to be intentional with the gospel!
Pray for Pham and that she would come to know Christ. Join us in praying that God would be her source of everything that she needs. Pray for more divine encounters and conversations as our team sees that being consistent matters. We’ve been going to the same restaurants and same neighborhoods and we can sense a shift happening in the atmosphere!
As one ministry team walked refugee and immigrant neighborhoods, praying for open doors and divine encounters, they felt such an intense weight of darkness that they literally stopped half way through and began to pray for God to anoint their feet with authority and power. They asked God to push back the darkness and take back with every step what belonged to Him and His Kingdom! One student said, “ I have never done anything like this before, but I am amazed at how strong I could sense the change and shift in the atmosphere.” She started to pray with a new boldness and felt empowered to walk in the true authority Christ has given her!
God is moving among our team. Our students are learning how to pray with power, break strongholds over neighborhoods, and see the unseen realities of spiritual darkness.
God has been also prompting students to seek forgiveness for secret sins, as they step deeper into His presence and obedience. Pray for God to cover our team with boldness and power as they step outside their own comforts to bring light to the forgotten, marginalized, refugee and immigrant.
The phrase, “drinking from a fire hose” sums up our day. We started with missionaries arriving at the Awe Star office at 8:30 am for orientation. We spent time getting to know each other, setting the standard for Jesus ministry and learning what it means to be RFA (Ready for Anything). We then traveled to Oklahoma City (OKC) for more training with our OKC teammates and learned how to share the gospel with a 15-30 second testimony, the 3 circles strategy, and different world views. We were able to immediately practice what we were taught on each other, and then engaged with their house church.
What is really cool about our partner ministry here in Oklahoma City , is that they live out an overseas model of church planting right here in the USA. They don’t have a church building, so funds can be streamlined into ministry. They really believe and practice prayer walking communities, seeking intentional opportunities as the Spirit leads to engage diverse cultures and immigrant populations. They practice active discipleship with those they encounter. They seek a “House of Peace” with a “person of peace” to move toward a reproducible house church in that community. A “House of Peace” is a place with a person of peace who they believe God is raising up to start or lead a home church in their community. They believe in bringing the church to them instead of asking them to cross obvious cultural barriers of language and worldview go to an “American culture” church. It’s a basic but impactful model of disciples making disciples in international communities.
Our team is ready to serve and see what God is going to do through them these 10 days. Be praying for us to get sweet rest tonight so our minds are fresh and our Spirits are ready. Pray that every day, we would be RFA! Pray that God would already be ordaining our steps for Divine Encounters and a “House of Peace”.