Hope Has A Name...
As the team Cross walked into Ringwood, the presence of God was heavy. One team member said, “ I got to carry the Cross and the presence of God was so strong in the atmosphere, I just wept as I prayed.”
Ringwood is the 10th community out of 14 that #TeamOklahoma is CrissWalking into on #TheWalk. Every community thus far has been impactful and impacted by the obedience of student missionaries that have refused to stay comfortable this summer. Each community is entered with students carrying 4 large crosses, worship music projected on a loud speaker, and intentional prayers for salvation, repentance, deliverance, and revival.
God has been gracious and in every community many are coming to Faith in Jesus. Those that are already believers are being encouraged and prayed over.
One elderly man in his 80’s said, “Only two people my whole life have prayed for me. You are the second.”
Another lady in Cherokee said, “ I have heard of Jesus, but your the first person to actually tell me about Him.”
After the team CrossWalks in they do what is called a GrillWalk. During the GrillWalk each team member divides into ministry teams of three and goes door to door canvassing the entire community offering free hamburgers, invites to a Carnival outreach for the next evening, and prayers. As students go door to door, people are hesitant at first, but as students begin to off free burgers and ask them how they can pray for them, people soften and begin to share their struggles.
One family in Meno came out after students had offered burgers and when they were asked how they could be prayed for the woman began to weep. “ We just moved here from Dallas and we have no work and we are living with in-laws since December. Please pray for us to find jobs and that we will be able to live on our own.”
Another older man said, “ I never come to the door, but because you knocked 3 times and didn’t give up, I felt like it was important to come. I had no idea how important!” This man prayed to receive Jesus as students ministered to him at his front door. It was the most important knock he has ever had!
After each GrillWalk the next morning from 9-4 students renovate homes, clean yards, build porches and put on roofs. They serve the most forgotten people in the community and bathe them in love as they share the gospel of hope with them. Then by 6pm they host a family carnival night in the same community where they give away food and clothing and offer free carnival games for families. At this event every person is introduced to the gospel one more time. Many are coming to faith, embracing hope, and finding purpose again as students love loud, serve strong, and boldly share the gospel to each person.
The stories are endless and we could tell them forever of all the great things God is doing. But we would like to ask you to pray as we enter our last week and final four communities. Would you pray with us that the Lord would empower these student missionaries to finish strong and be emboldened with courage to continue to share the gospel with every person they meet!
What are the chances?
Last night we canvased the community of Cherokee, went door to door, saw God move and left many flyers at unanswered doors.
One of our teams talked with a man, Demitry, on the street for about 20 minutes. He gave his life to Jesus and was excited to invite his buddies to the carnival (family fun night) tonight.
Fast forward to the carnival. Demitry shows up with 6 of his buddies who look like they are gonna start a brawl. Justin, one of our team members who met Demitry, sat down with these 7 men and shared. Mostly, they were closed off but the Spirit was doing something. After Justin prayed for the men, he walked away. Another one of our students, Cole, felt a deep prompting from the Holy Spirit and prayed with these men. They were very open to be prayed for and you could see that God was moving again.
The relentless love of God led yet another team member, Tom, to talk to this same guy who was now standing alone. This man began to share how The night before he was about to commit suicide. He had already planned how he would hang himself. He was at the bar and went home to fulfill his plan when he saw a flyer our team had left at his door. The flyer so moved him that he thought about it all night and decided to wait on harming himself. He felt drawn to come to the park to see what the carnival was all about. What are the chances?! Tom and another team member, Justin prayed with this man and he gave his life to Jesus!
God is always working in the backdrop of our lives, even when we can’t feel Him. The things we may see as insignificant, could be the very thing that determines life and death for another. Pray for us see the unseen even in the small things we do in serving . Pray for more divine encounters. Pray for us as we go into Ringwood and Meno tomorrow! Darkness is being pushed back and the Spirit is moving!
Tonight our teams sat in AWE as each team member shared the great things God has done in Cherokee. Testimonies of Freedom experienced on the CrossWalk to surrender of hearts as students canvased the entire city with prayer, invites, and gospel conversations.
Several shared story after story of addiction, abuse, suicide, anger and loneliness. It was absolutely heart wrenching but full of hope as the Gospel empowered students to boldly proclaim Jesus. .
During the Grill Walk outreach, a few students encountered a home of a former Police Officer. They knocked on his door 3 times, at both the front and back porch. They learned that he recently lost his job due to a suicide attempt and that his wife had just left him. He was lost, lonely and tired of fighting. One of our team members shared that “there is hope, and God can change situations. But even if He doesn’t, He can change your perspective”. After a prompting of the Holy Spirit, they asked if He wanted to pray and ask for forgiveness and invite Jesus into His life and he did! This man was moved to tears seeing young people in the community that cared enough to share and said “I only came because you knocked on the door 3 times. so I figured it must have been important and it is”. Our team responded, “you better believe it is!”
As we walk in the Awe of God, each step of instant obedience, and are relentless, God moves powerfully! Would you continue to pray for our teams as they take Cherokee by storm tomorrow with 9 service projects. We are believing for revival!
A Holy Invasion...
Several times today our students had to stop and remember that they were in the United States and in their own backyard ( Oklahoma). The movement of God we are seeing is just astonishing us. It was like a holy invasion as the teams moved from service projects to homeless shelters to the carnival outreach and a unplanned outreach with the Marshallese people living in Enid. God showed up and salvation was happening all around us. Several students led their first people to Jesus.
At the Homeless shelter one lady wept as she shared how the day before she was diagnosed with terminal cirrhosis of the liver and was given six months to live. A team leader asked if she knew who Jesus was and she replied, “ No, not really. No one has ever told me who he really is.” She then shared the gospel with her and her tears turned from fear to joy as she received Jesus for the first time.
At the carnival event an entire football team what had been invited the day before on the grill walk, showed up. Their coach cancelled practice and asked each of them to join us at the carnival. Every team member on the football team made a decision to follow Jesus! The coach just wept as he saw God move over his team.
Folks this is happening in Oklahoma! In your backyard! These student missionaries are seeing first hand the darkness on the streets of our state and are boldly invading that darkness with the gospel!
Please continue to pray for us for each community we are going into. God is moving, as we step boldly into obedience!
Walking with Power...
Today we had the chance to love on 5 different communities. We spent the morning doing #LaundryLove, passing out hotdogs and sharing testimonies, and carrying the cross as we pushed back darkness in Fairview before journeying on to Aline.
As we strolled into the small community of around 200 people, we felt the presence of God flood Aline and knew God was about to do something great!
Our team was like a mass army, divide and conquer was our strategy. With a team of over 65 people, we were able to go door to door and hand out burgers, bibles, and prayers (grill walk) in 4 communities!
One of our students in Aline, Autumn, felt the prompting of the Holy Spirit to ask a girl deeper questions. As she was engaging in Gospel conversations, Autumn found out this girl wasn’t a believer. Autumn was sharing about Jesus being a friend. Someone to be vulnerable with, to talk to always, not just when you need something. This girl was so moved by the relationship our students have with Jesus, she decided to give her life to Christ right then!
That is one of many stories we have from today! God is on the move! We have been practicing the activation of the Holy Spirit which simply means, we allow Him to move in and through us.
Would you pray for our missionaries to have more encounters like these? As we do service projects tomorrow and lead a family fun night, the carnival, would you pray for our students to be RFA, Ready For Anything.
When God Tugs...
Yesterday morning we began the day with a challenge to pray big and expect God to move.
Boy did He ever!
During the Community outreach aka the carnival one of our student missionaries felt a tug to go pray with a girl she saw at the event. A little hesitant but sure it was the leading of the Holy Spirit she took a step of faith and sought out the girl to pray for her, but it didn’t stop there. She began to share her personal testimony about how she came to Jesus and God just opened wide the girls heart. The girl began to share her own struggles and before the night was over, she had entrusted those struggles to Jesus. We praise God for every soul that comes to Jesus!
Sometimes God just wants us to listen to the prompting, the tugs, the still small voice asking us to step out side of ourselves. Would you pray that the Holy Spirit would fill our students with boldness and that they would grow sensitivity to the Spirit as they continue to take the gospel to each community.
God moved in a unique way today. During our community outreach, God led us to open a booth to wash feet. As we kneeled to wash, we would share from John 13, how Jesus washed the feet of His disciples. Imagine the Creator of the world bending down to wash the feet of His creation.
Jesus set the example that we are to serve one another. We shared with each person that at the foot of the cross, we all stand equally separated from God no matter where we come from or what sin we have committed.
A few days ago, we Grill walked a neighborhood. ( where we canvas a neighborhood by giving out burgers, bibles, and prayer). As one of our teams was headed to the last house of the evening, they noticed a man standing by himself. They walked up to him and engaged him in gospel conversation. They found out his name was Kirby and that he was homeless, living out of a van with his uncle. As Kirby shared his story, he captured the hearts of our students who were listening. They gave him more burgers, prayed with him, and left with heavy hearts.
Here we are, two days later. The first people to walk past the foot washing station, Kirby and his uncle Galan. A little hesitant, but willing they allowed us to wash their feet. Overgrown yellow nails, calloused feet, and deep layers of dirt filled the troth as we gently washed their feet and shared the story of Jesus. These men were deeply impacted that we were willing to bend low, clean their feet, and pray for them in the name of Jesus.
The water may have been filled with dirt after they got up, but their hearts were full and smiles were brighter because of the love of Jesus.
Would you pray for Kirby and Galan? Pray that what they experienced tonight will put a longing for more of Jesus.
The Lord is moving among us. As student missionaries posture their heart in response to the presence of the Lord, we are seeing transformation happen on the streets and in their personal lives.
Going house to house, team members prayed in response to requests at each door. A common prayer was, “Lord send rain!” We awoke yesterday to a rushing pour of rain that didn’t just get everything wet but flooded areas we were planning to serve. Team members didn’t get discouraged, but embraced the opportunity to pick up their cross and pray Heaven down on the highway and byways.
As the day progressed the clouds cleared and team members got their gear and headed to serve. Pushing mowers, picking up trash, & plowing through brush to clear pathways to people’s homes, awakened hearts to how God is plowing through our hearts as we serve and seek Gospel opportunities.
One Team member said, “Clearing the brush is showing me how The Holy Spirit is clearing the brush in my life, so I can display Him without hinderance.”
By evening, we hosted a bonfire that brought out the community and students played with kids while others engaged in gospel conversations with their parents. About 10pm we packed up and headed out to the casino! Packed full of cars we got permission to set up at the exit and offer burgers and prayer to everyone that was leaving. Team members began conversations with bouncers, gamblers, and night club hoppers! Imagine leaving a casino at midnight and being offered prayer as you stumbled home from defeat. Gospel conversations permeated the air as Jesus was lifted high in the night watches among the hopeless.
Please pray for the Lord to capture hearts today and open doors for salvation!
What are the Chances???
Today the team was challenged to be RFA- “Ready for Anything” Taken from Acts 8 where Philip was placed on the road to Gaza and encountered an Ethiopian Eunuch who was reading the Scroll of Isaiah! I mean what are the chances??
So everyone prayed this morning for the Lord to use them to share the gospel like Philip and they committed to be RFA!
The Lord responded! Every house that was painted and every yard that was mowed or yard that was cleared students prayed for the Lord to push back the darkness, bless the home, and give Divine Encounters!
By the time we got to our community family outreach ( aka the Carnival) the Lord was setting up encounters!
Taylor, one of our student missionaries felt a prompting from the Holy Spirit to share her personal testimony with the entire crowd at the Carnival. Taylor had never done this before and was nervous, but knew with confidence she was suppose to share. She stepped to the mic like a pro and shared confidently how the Lord had changed her life and gave an invitation for anyone who didn’t know Jesus to go to the prayer tent.
What Taylor didn’t know, was as soon as she finished, a young boy that has been helping with #TheWalk was overwhelmed with conviction and ran over to the tent to rededicate his life to Christ. It was powerful how God had so evidently prompted Taylor to speak boldly, but at the same time was using it to speak to this young man. Taylor walked out being RFA and God had a Divine Encounter waiting!
Can we challenge you, if your reading, to ask the Lord to make you RFA (Ready for Anything) for Him too and ask Him to lead you toward a Divine Encounter?
The Unseen Seen
Today was amazing! It was like the presence of the Lord flooded every community our teams entered. Divine encounters seem to be everywhere.
We had the opportunity to pray at a home of two young women in a decaying neighborhood. Upon arriving at the door, the ladies greeted us, surprised we were willing to talk to them. We offered them some free burgers and began to ask how we could pray? One lady hung her head sharing how she had just been diagnosed with cervical cancer. The other lady also very defeated, shared how bills were more than they could manage and that life was hard right now. I asked, “is there anything else?” The first lady replied, “ Yes, please pray for my daughter who has a tormenting spirit.” What? A tormenting spirit? A bit surprised by her response, we instantly knew, we must pray and take authority over their home in the name of Jesus! We bowed our heads and prayed for healing, provision, and deliverance. When we were done, the ladies smiled and said “this is the best thing that has ever happened to us.”
Can you imagine living in such uncertainty, pain and torment that the simple prayer of another would make the “best moment that has ever happened to you?”
My friends, that is the power of the name of Jesus and the beauty of the gospel when it is preached to those without hope.
As teams were going all over the communities in another area, a man drove several miles away to catch up to us and ask how he could buy a burger? We told him they were free and we would be happy to give him and many as he wanted. He asked for 6. As we stood their making them we began to ask him some questions about his life and if he had faith. He shared he was an agnostic and struggled with what he truly believed. We stood talking for about 15-20 minutes about faith and trust that come from Christ alone. He didn’t pray to receive Christ but he did say he felt led to go back and watch the Passion of the Christ. Would you join us in praying for Tristan to come to Faith in Christ?
God truly is pulling back the veil and allowing us to see the unseen as we intentionally go door to door sharing burgers, a Bible, and lots of Jesus!