Ever have that dream, where kids get off a bus and flock over to you to hear the Gospel. Then the Holy Spirit pours out and many repent and get baptized in the Holy Spirit? Me neither. But it happened anyway.
Here’s the Story:
As part of my family’s life change [selling all to pursue a deeper relationship with the Risen Christ], I’ve enrolled in a course called “Messenger Boot Camp”. It’s an intensive course designed to spur the Body of Christ: 1. to intimacy with the Father 2. to Spirit-led evangelism.
Anyway, as part of the course we’re supposed to join an evangelism team 1/week in different parts of the city. Yesterday, there was an outreach planned for Frogtown [now what they call “Godtown“] in St. Paul. I confess I had no desire to go. At all. But, the other outreaches were in the evening and I didn’t want to be away from my family for another night, so I reluctantly went. It felt like an obligation and a waste of my time. Just keepin’ it real. I’ve been on other ‘outreaches’ that weren’t done in love and produced no fruit, and I was expecting nothing.
There was a team of about 30 ‘Messengers’ that met to pray and go out. I end up walking with another friend of mine, and we walk a few blocks just chatting/praying with people along our way. Nothing intense. Then we meet this Native American guy.
[Aside: I’m a ‘normal dude’. What I’m about to say is coming from the mouth of a white guy who lives in the suburbs and works on computers. I don’t go to conferences. I don’t chase after signs and wonders. I have a family and I would prefer to just be with them.]
It’s obvious this guy has a demon. I don’t know how to describe it to you. Maybe you just had to be there. But he had a demon. We chat with him about the Gospel, and he mentions bad dreams and nightmares he’s been having. We pray. He sees light. We talk some more. My friend is about to pray that this demon would leave, and it’s like a switch flipped. This guy literally runs away. Instantly. It was so weird, he just instantly took off after several minutes of nice talking, he bolted. It’s like the demon knew what was about to happen and took off.
My partner and I committed to intercede for each other more as we witness.
The Real Story
We get to the end of the next block and start a conversation with a youth named “Terrell”. He’s got a basketball medal around his neck, so we just start chatting about basketball. A buddy of his rolls up on a bike and they start chatting back and forth about who’s better…just typical kid stuff. We then turn the conversation to Jesus.
Terrell is super interested and says “I can feel that! I feel what your saying in my heart. I feel my heart beating against my chest!” All the sudden someone starts shouting as us to stop what we’re doing from inside the house. This is my reminder to start interceding. Her shouting stops.
Terrell prays to receive salvation on the corner of Charles and Grotto. As he’s praying, he sees a vision of Jesus coming on clouds and hears Jesus speaking to him in his heart. He begins to fall backward into my friends arms under the Power of Jesus. His friend is now interested and we start sharing the Gospel of Repentance with Him, trying to make sure he understood the cost of following Christ. As my friend is talking through this, school gets out and 3 buses simultaneously pull up to the corner and drop off tons of kids!
Terrell, who just received Christ as Lord, starts calling out to all he knows saying, “Come over here! You got to hear this!” Suddenly there’s revival breaking out on this corner! Flocks of kids aged 12-17 start coming up to us the hear the Gospel. For the next hour or two, we shared the Gospel with 25-30 kids, and 6 prayed to receive Christ.
As this is going on, the lady who was shouting at us comes out and begins interrupting and distracting things. We begin to pray over her, and she falls to the ground under the power of the Holy Spirit. I don’t believe she’s set free or anything, but I thought it was cool that these kids got to see a demonstration of God’s Power while they are coming into the Kingdom.
Lessons I learned:
- I may never ‘want’ to go ‘evangelize’. I don’t even like that word: ‘evangelize’. It makes me feel like a Jehovah’s Witness or something. But, God honors our faithfulness and His Word.
- There is Power in the Name of Jesus. I don’t consider myself a super Christian, but demons fled at the Name of Jesus.
- Prayer works. Intercession makes the difference in the presentation of the Gospel.
- The harvest is plentiful. The workers are few. We should ask the Lord of the Harvest for more workers (Mt 9:37) (and my friend says, He will probably send you)
- If we have faith to move mountains, but don’t have LOVE, it counts for nothing. The Father loves these kids. If I’m connected to the Father and asking for His heart, my heart will eventually have to break for the LOST around me. It’s impossible to love God and not try to reach the lost. I think these kids could tell we weren’t there to earn a stamp in our Jesus book. We really did love them.
One final update:
This Godtown house really inspired me. It’s a picture of what we’ll be trying to do in North Minneapolis. They’ve bought and renovated homes throughout Frogtown. Kids play in their yard. Mentorship programs are raising up. Bible studies are happening. Transformation is happening. Frogtown is where my wife was raised [and I actually met some people who remember her family]. Transformation is taking place because these people have seen a need, they’ve gotten God’s heart, and they haven’t given up.
When the Son of Man returns, will He find faith on earth? (Luke 18:8)
I get worried about myself during this transition. I’m leaving my comfort to follow the Voice of Christ. I’m worried. Not that He won’t show up, but that I wont. Having fellowship with other believers who actually believe is so vital for me in this process. “don’t forsake the fellowship” is taking on a whole new meaning for me. I need my faith stirred, and I need to see Spiritual Fathers continuously walking out their faith.
2 Timothy 2:13 ~if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.
Thank you, Steven Uggen, Chris Rush of Trinity Works.
Thank you good people of Godtown. I didn’t chat with you much, but thank you for your shining example of faith and hope and love in the city.