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MISSION TRIP: CALIFORNIA
I’m catching up on my newsletters! This was a great mission trip to Southern California. My friend Doug lives out there and flies me out every so often to preach with him on the local campuses and streets. Doug came to the Lord, in true repentance, through my ministry many years ago. He’s real fruit of our ministry that is now a blessing to others! When your convert becomes a street preacher, that’s a good sign of a true conversion! Doug ministers out on the streets, especially to the homeless on Skid Row.
Pasadena City College Outreach
We spent three days ministering on this campus. Apparently I didn’t take many pictures. But there is a great amphitheater where you can preach and gather a crowd that will sit and listen for hours.
The administration on this campus has always been good to us. Some campuses will send out the landscapers to blow leaves or mow the lawn, just to cause noise to disturb us. We know this because the landscapers will literally follow us around wherever we move, making it obvious. On this campus, there was construction being done in the amphitheater location but I don’t think this was done on purpose to keep us from it. We found other locations on campus that had high foot traffic and preached just the same.
The students also are relatively mild mannered. You have the typical vocal heckling, which is to be expected, but we’ve never had any “riot” on this campus like we have with others. The free speech area, the administration, the students, etc, all make this one of my favorite campuses to preach on. The sunny weather of Southern California helps too!
Hollywood Blvd Outreach
My friend Paul joined me on this mission trip. I flew in from Texas and he came in from Missouri. He’s always fun to hang around. He’s very extraverted and funny and the fact that he’s Italian originally from New England helps us to get along very well.
Hollywood Blvd is a great location to preach because the foot traffic is constant and you have tourists coming in from all over the world! It’s an INTERNATIONAL outreach when you preach the gospel at this location! The Lord knows how many countries you actually reach spending a day preaching in this spot!
Huntington Beach Outreach
Huntington Beach is another great place for open air outreach in Southern California. The board walk has a large amount of foot traffic and, if you are good at drawing a crowd, there’s even an amphitheater off to the side. The best thing about amphitheater’s is that is provides your listeners with a place to sit, which means they stay longer.
Brother Paul got us started with the preaching. As you can see, people on the board walk also stopped to listen to the preaching!
One tip for drawing a crowd is to start off loud, so everyone can hear you, and once you have drawn a bit of a crowd, tone down the volume so that the listeners have to come closer. If you stay full blast with your volume the whole time, the crowd will gather far away and stay there, so there will be less interaction.
Paul did a great job with drawing in the crowd and interacting with them. If the crowd knows you are willing to take their questions, it gets them much more engaged and willing to stay. If all you do is stand up and deliver a sermon, without taking any questions or interacting with the audience, the people won’t stop and those who do will quickly leave.
Here you can see Paul was interacting with a young boy. He had some pretty good and challenging questions, if I recall, for his age. Never underestimate the youth. Sometimes they need to be feed more meat than what they typically get at Sunday school too. Children can think deeply about life and the things of God. God put eternity in their hearts.
Preaching to the balcony! Each location that you preach will have a different kind of crowd. This location had a lot of the younger generation. Skateboarders, surfers, sun bathers, etc. Statistically, the earlier that you reach people with the gospel, the better. The older a person gets, the less likely they are to come to Christ. Plus, the average person has to hear the gospel message about ten times before they receive it. The fact that they stop and listen shows that they are not completely hardened to the Gospel, at least not yet. Sometimes your loudest heckler ends up becoming your most committed convert. I have sen that many, many times.
The great thing about going out witnessing and preaching with other brothers is that you can “tag team” preach. We usually preach for 5-6 hours when we go out, so having a brother to share the load with really helps. Jesus sent out his disciples to preach, two by two. Paul and I took turns preaching and we had an engaging crowd almost the entire time. The most important thing, the crowd heard the message loud and clear: “Repent and turn to God. Jesus is alive and He’s coming back.”
If you are looking to find a faithful, fruitful ministry to pray for and support, consider supporting ours. Here are some of the testimonies that people have sent me from all over the world!
REPENTED OF FORNICATION AND SEEKING GOD
RAISING UP MORE STREET PREACHERS
HELPING OTHER LABORERS LEARN AND GROW
INSPIRING OTHER BELIEVERS
ENCOURAGING WORDS FROM BELIEVERS
DRUG DEALER COMES TO JESUS
THROUGH STREET PREACHING
I recently heard that the average drug dealer is responsible for around 500 deaths! That’s incredible! Think about how many lives are potentially changed and impacted by leading just one drug dealer to the Lord! Winning just one soul, regardless of their background, has the potential to change the world because they then become a witness themselves to touch and change countless souls!
Please pray for all the people who heard the Gospel and were touched by the message! Especially pray for the new converts, that they grow and stay strong in the faith!
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