By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer
ALEXANDRIA – Momentum is building for what could be one of the largest multi-denominational evangelistic outreaches ever in Central Louisiana.
The Hope4U GO TELL Crusade will be held Oct. 14-17 at the Rapides Parish Coliseum, and has support from at least 50 churches in the CenLa Baptist Association as well as congregations from other denominations.
Rick Gage, founder of GO TELL Crusades in Duluth, Georgia, team evangelist Ken Freeman, founder of Ken Freeman Ministries in Martindale, Texas, and Scott Camp, founder of Discover Joy Ministries in Fort Worth, Texas, will bring Gospel messages. Meanwhile, award-winning Christian bands Rush of Fools and NewSong will be joined by an area-wide mass choir as well as the GO TELL worship team to share about Christ through music.
“When the body of Christ comes together, works together, prays together, and fasts together, it builds unity and builds a synergy where the body of Christ can have a huge spiritual impact in a community,” Gage said. “The key to a successful outreach event in addition to the leadership and preparation it builds unity, as one, for the purpose of reaching the lost. That’s one of the byproducts of these events that it builds unity among the body of Christ. This outreach event is crossing over all denominational and racial barriers as the family of God comes together to reach the unchurched in central Louisiana.”
The crusade is part of the statewide Harvest campaign to “pray for every home and share with every person” in Louisiana through the end of 2018.
Unifying the church
Philip Robertson, pastor of Philadelphia Baptist Church that has campuses in Alexandria and Deville, said the crusade is a precursor of what he believes will be a mighty move of God in Central Louisiana. His members are among 400 who have trained to serve as crusade ushers, decision and follow up counselors and prayer warriors.
“Years ago in the ‘Experiencing God’ study, I learned that God is at work all around us, and we should join Him,” Robertson said. “I am convinced that God has been at work preparing a great spiritual harvest in central Louisiana this October. It’s been decades since I’ve seen so many churches crossing denominational and racial lines to unify together for the Gospel. I believe a Great Awakening is coming.”
Joshua Joy Dara, pastor of Zion Hill Family Church in Pineville, has enjoyed the unified spirit of area churches.
“I am excited about the opportunity to win souls for our Lord Jesus Christ,” he said. “Likewise, I get excited watching the Body of Christ working together in Unity for the glory of God. It is quite refreshing.”
Reaching the youth
Organizers have planned several events to reach the area’s youth, including a Field of Faith student revival Oct. 7 at Louisiana College’s Wildcat Stadium, conducted in conjunction with the area Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
There will be food and a contest giving a student the chance to win a $24,500 truck.
Wednesday, October 17, the final night of the crusade will be a youth emphasis night with free pizza accompanied by music by national recording artist Gawvi.
Also, there will be a contest to give a student the chance to win $25,000.
Gage said everything is being done to attract youth to hear the Gospel.
“We will remind the students they can be winners, but it starts with making the right decisions,” Gage said. “We want students to know the greatest days are not behind them but in front of them. We have to go to the extra mile to put on a full court press to reach the youths of America.
“As we studied the history of revivals, there has never been a revival where it didn’t begin with young people,” he continued. “I’m thrilled we are putting a special emphasis on reaching youths across the region.”
Gage emphasized for a great harvest to take place during the area-wide outreach effort, prayer must be a central activity.
“The need to evangelize the lost has never been greater; and at the same time, the opportunities to evangelize the lost have never been greater,” Gage said. “This GO TELL Crusade is an incredible opportunity for the people of God to come together to reach the unchurched. This is not an event for the saints of God. This is an event for the saints of God to bring lost classmates, family members and co-workers.
“Prayer is what moves the hand of God,” he said. “That will be the key to the success, the spiritual impact and the key to the presence and anointing of God on every service because of the prayers of God’s people. Prayer was the key to the spiritual impact and the success Billy Graham had in his outreach events and crusades all over the world. Evangelism is the work of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, prayer becomes our greatest priority. Pray, invite and bring.”