Keyshawn told us, “just to put the flyer in fence for the crusade and vbs and move on”. This was his former neighborhood where he bought drugs and lived a lost life until one day someone shared Christ with him.
Team member Wendell and I heard voices deep within this dilapidated structure and knew we were being called in. Wendell is a Creator-gifted business man in the financial industry, father, husband on his first mission trip with much to lose. I certainly know how much I have to lose with my smoking hot wife and two amazing kids and the best church on the planet, but in the words of the young martyred missionary Jim Elliot, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
I went in and Wendell said he followed me in to pull me out “in case”. We were on a mission from God! The four guys and one girl who beckoned us were in for a surprise. We went in on a mission to share Christ with folks who had probably never seen the likes of two very American guys in person. It must have been surreal as I told them about the crusade and vbs all week but they needed to know the reason for the hope inside us right now. So I told them the story of my redemption from much of the same influences and then they got me.
They argued with each other then an uncanny peace ricocheted through the open-air lions den and squelched the dogs from biting. When the name of Jesus was spoken as the rescuer of my soul and life – it was as if God silenced and calmed the savage beasts within.
I told them this is the place Jesus would have come to befriend us 2000 years ago and He still will today! I asked whether they would like to accept Jesus Christ right now. A couple said yes and I started praying and moments later each one bowed their heads and started repeating my words. All five accepted Christ and it blew both Wendell and I both. One of the guys (John) played cricket with the pastor (Rev) 40 years ago and knew of him but followed a destructive path said he wanted a different life now.
We didn’t get out of there with our lives – we got out of their with 5 new lives!