Was Osama Bin Laden Saved?

Osama Bin LadenThe cover of Time magazine recently featured Pastor Rob Bell and his controversial new book that hones in on the weighty issue of eternity. In spite of Bell’s interview sidestepping since the book came out, the book flatly endorses Universalism – the notion that all will get a chance to come to Christ after death no matter what beliefs they held to in this life. I find that position impossible to hold in light of a multitude of scriptures.

I see the heart of God broken for the Lost, but they are still the Lost as the Bible addresses them.

The Lord is…not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. (2 Pet. 3:9, NKJV) Clearly the heart of God is that all come to know Christ and spend eternity in the presence of God. Will that choosing of God be violated? Clearly yes.

For many are called, but few chosen. (Matt. 20:16, NKJV) Based on the context of Jesus’ words we could easily restate that concluding statement to this: “Many are called but few choose.” Most want to choose their own way forward and violate God’s choosing of them for relationship with God. It is particularly true that religious people choose their own way versus the way of humility into relationship with God. Few choose the way of humility. Few (something less than 50%) find authentic relationship with God through Jesus’ atoning death for them.

Bottom line, was Bin Laden a follower of Jesus? Of course he wasn’t. I don’t mean to be a party pooper but here’s what I think. Though millions of Americans are celebrating the shooting of this notorious criminal, there is a sense in which God is not celebrating. Yes, evil has been judged. For that we are grateful. On the other hand, this man has gone into a christless eternity. For those who understand the heart of God, this is nothing to get overly excited about, regardless of the evil he stood for.

 

Prophetic Evangelism Made Easy by Doug Addison

It is not too difficult to notice a new spiritual hunger in people. The media is overflowing with television shows and movies related to spirituality. Shows like, Charmed, Medium and Buffy the Vampire Slayer are indicators of the new openness people have to spirituality, though these shows are not a positive influence. With this increasing interest in the occult and New Age spirituality, one cannot help but wonder if demonic forces have invaded our society. I believe that we are seeing this strange awakening to spirituality because God Himself is planting a spiritual hunger in people and they are searching for understanding and fulfillment.

A new way to do evangelism
Ten years ago God directed me to begin using the spiritual gifts of the word of knowledge and prophecy (1 Corinthians 12) as a means of evangelism to reach people who are not responding to traditional evangelistic methods. Because people are already going to psychics, why not let them know what God truly has to say to them? It sounds kind of spooky and hard to do but actually, we found that it is as easy giving as speaking words of encouragement.

Basically, a word of knowledge is something that the Holy Spirit communicates to us and it is usually about a present or past situation while prophecy is about the future. We have trained ourselves to communicate what we sense God saying in everyday language, avoiding insider Christian talk and obscure Bible references.  We are finding that people are actually very open to hearing from God and even receive Jesus Christ during these encounters.

Where’s that in the Bible?
When I first set out to do this type of evangelism, I searched the Bible and found in John 1:45–51 that Jesus drew Nathanael to follow Him by giving him a word of knowledge when He stated, “Here is a true Israelite, in whom there is nothing false.” It must have been accurate because Nathanael was amazed that Jesus knew about his character. Jesus also told Nathanael that He had “seen” Nathanael sitting under a fig tree; perhaps it was where Nathanael had his prayer times with God, because Jesus did call Nathanael a man of truth. Jesus went on to give him a word of prophecy for the future. This encounter caused Nathanael to declare, “Rabbi, you are the son of God, the King of Israel,” and to become one of His followers.

In John 4:7–30, 39–41, Jesus encounters a Samaritan woman and they began to talk about worshipping God. Then Jesus tells her a little about herself: she had been married five times and was not married to the man she now lived with. He did this without condemning her; He did it by a word of knowledge (about her past and present). Had Jesus been judging her, He would have called her an adulterous woman. Instead, He said to her, “What you said is quite honest.” Jesus seemed to find the positive in people. Jesus had appraised her accurately and His compassion and concern for her ignited an evangelistic flame inside. She ran back to the town to tell everyone about Him, which caused many Samaritans to follow Jesus that day.

Loving and encouraging people
We need to see ourselves as missionaries to our own communities. We need to study the language and culture and find ways to fit the message of Jesus into what people already believe. In today’s pop culture, there is a large number of “reality TV” shows. Many of these shows are mean-spirited and attempt to make rejecting people funny. The “Makeover” shows on the other hand, tend to build people up. Why not become part of an “Extreme Make Over—God Edition”!

It is evident with the increased popularity of psychics that people are longing to hear from God. People today are gripped by fear, beat down, and stressed out. They long for encouragement and hope. According to First Corinthians 14:3, prophecy (or any form of revelation) is for strengthening, encouragement, and comfort, especially when it is used as a means of evangelism.

One of our many approaches to Prophetic Evangelism is to give people encouragement and words from God about their destiny. It is very similar to how Jesus interacted with Nathaniel and the Samaritan woman. We say things like, “We took a class on how to encourage people; can we practice on you?” We go on to tell them how God sees them and give them new hope. We often hear, “Are you psychics?” That is actually their way of saying that you are accurate with what you are saying. We respond with, “No we are learning to hear God,” or “We are Christians, but probably not like most that you have met before.”

Imagine the possibilities if Christians everywhere began to speak positive words of encouragement to people. I’m convinced it would change the face of evangelism and bring millions of people into a relationship with Jesus.


About The Author
Doug Addison is the founder of InLight Connection, and he travels worldwide helping people transform their lives and discover their destiny. His training seminar topics include finding your destiny, hearing God, and understanding dreams and visions. Doug is the author of the books, Prophecy, Dreams and Evangelism and Personal Development God’s Way. He and his wife, Linda live in Santa Maria, California. For more information, visit www.dougaddison.com.

Flower Give-Aways Are Great Outreaches by Janie Sjogren

flowers

Get a group together to bundle up flowers, with some other accent greenery.  Target anywhere that you can find women, i.e. shopping areas, Nursing Homes,  and people leaving libraries and exercise clubs.

Buy buckets of flowers, baby’s breath and some fern.  Get some ribbon, clear and green paper to wrap the flowers in, and some preprinted cards and rubber bands.

outreach cardCreate cards to attach to the flowers:
We just wanted you to know you are loved!

Have a blessed day!

From ______(church, website, celebration times, phone number)

This is a small reminder that you are loved!

or

Have a great day!

From ______(church, website, celebration times, phone number)

Create Phrase: Use a phrase above, or create your own.

Copy It: onto colored paper or cardstock.

Cut It: Assign a perfectionist to use a paper cutter and cut up into smaller cards.

Punch It: Make a hole with a hole punch in each card.

Bundle It: Buy buckets of flowers, baby’s breath and some fern.  Wrap a flower with some greenery, surround with green and clear plastic sheets of floral paper to wrap the flowers in, and secure with a rubber band.

Thread It: Thread a ribbon or two through the hole to attach the note to the flowers. Use one or two colorful strands, maybe 2 strands of 12” of either of red, pink, purple or white curling ribbon.

Bucket It: Place bottom ends of flowers into water in buckets, tub, coolers or bins to transport your flowers to your hand-out site.

LOCATIONS FOR OUTREACH

Intentional Acts of Kindness:  Find women to give flowers to on street corners, nursing homes, shopping areas and door to door give-aways.

Empower the people in church to extend love beyond the walls of the church:  Have the flowers with cards attached and ready on Sunday morning, and ask people to take them as they leave to give away.  They might have someone in mind, or they might know of someone who lives alone in their neighborhood who could use a lift.  Or they could hand them out to strangers that they come across.

WHAT TO SAY

“We just wanted to bless your day!”  “We just wanted you to know you are loved!”

A Biblical Commitment Demands Cultural Relevance by Paul Alexander

Much has been said and written in recent years, offering up all kinds of criticism of modern day Churches for trading off adherence to the Gospel of Jesus Christ for contemporary methods of communicating it. Interestingly enough the overwhelming majority of this criticism comes by way of other Churches. Typically it comes from Churches that are not growing criticizing Churches that are growing. After all, if a Church is growing, they’ve got to be doing something wrong don’t they?

I have a tendency to go the other way on this one. In fact, I’d go so far as to say if a Church isn’t working hard to be culturally relevant, it isn’t working hard to remain true to the Scriptures! You can’t be radically committed to the Scriptures without being radically committed to communicating the Scriptures in a culturally relevant manner.

It’s an easy statement to make because God has always communicated his message to people in a culturally relevant manner. Language, the time, place, ethnicity, gender, community, governance, and more has always been taken into consideration as the message of God was communicated to a particular audience.

The Apostle Paul, a master missionary, knew this about the heart of God and understood that the Gospel must be contextualized to each specific culture:

#1 Take time to understand the culture of your audience.

“…for as I was walking along I saw your many altars…” Acts 17:23

#2 Be positive, not negative, about the culture of your audience.

“So Paul, standing before the Council, addressed them as follows: ’Men of Athens, I noticed that you are very religious…” Acts 17:22

#3 Use the culture of your audience to connect with the heart of your audience.

“His purpose in all of this was that the nations should seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us. For in him we live and move and exist. As one of your own poets says, ‘We are his offspring.’” Acts 17:27-28

#4 Relationally speak truth to your audience.

“For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.” Acts 17:31


About The Author

Paul Alexander is a Pastor, Leader, and Church Strategist. He has spent the last ten years of ministry serving in three mega-church settings as a Youth Pastor, Executive Pastor, and Lead Pastor. He has been married to his wife Lisa for 14 years. Together they have three children Kennedy, Mia, and Lincoln. You can follow Paul on Twitter or at his blog.

Six Prayers To Increase Your Outreach IQ by Steve Sjogren

prayer in outreachNormally it is thought that one’s IQ is a fairly static number, that it can’t be increased, but not in the case of Outreach IQ. When it comes to outreach you can increase your level of intelligence. It’s a matter of doing some practical things—prayerful things. 

Prayer is the lifeblood of all vital outreach. You can pray without doing outreach, but you can’t do outreach without prayer.

You can pray without doing outreach, but you can’t do outreach without prayer.

It is easy to fall into the trap of being busy in outreach activities without walking in a spirit of prayer. Such a routine will only stir up lots of activity but little lasting fruit. Operating in this mode won’t yield the results we seek. 

God communicates with us all the time. The only hold up is on our end—the receiving end of things. As we pray we are able to hear his voice clearly. There are certain prayers that bear more fruit than others. Some prayers are easy to answer. They are the kinds that express his heart without hesitation.

If we hope to be effective in outreach we need to offer up prayers in faith, with no reservation.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting. James 1:5,6 NKJV  

We are wise if we choose our prayers well. If we hope to pray enthusiastically our prayers need to express the heart of God as revealed in his word. Consider the following as part of your prayer arsenal.

Prayer 1. “Bring People To You O Lord”
Pray for the Lost.

God shapes our hearts by the things we pray. 

The beginning point of prayer for outreach is to focus on THE point of it all—the Lost. Pray for the Lost around you. God will sensitize you to their plight, their pain, their struggle as you lift them up to God. Until we pray for the Lost we will likely only be irritated by the them. We are likely to lose patience until we enthusiastically welcome them in—in word and action.

Prayer 2. “Capture My Heart”
Ask God to Move Your Heart.

God will take a risky prayer like that seriously and move in your life. This can be a dangerous prayer to utter—at least dangerous if you don’t wish to participate in the action of the kingdom. Once God has gotten hold of your life he will take you, use you and send you to do his work. 

Prayer 3. “Increase My Anointing
Ask God for more power.

Praying this prayer is Part A. Being available to obey is Part B.
Practice doing the will of God. Practice a LOT. We get better at any skill as we do it frequently. Evangelism works in the same way. Get among others to practice your outreach chops frequently. God will build his momentum in you as you walk out his power. 

Prayer 4. “Stir Up My Gifts
Ask God for greater skill.

The Bible says the gifts and the calling of God are without repentance. God has clearly gifted you whether you can see the extent of his gifting in you or not. Life is about seeing more of the gifting he has given us and we explore our way forward. Flow with your gifting. Allow him to explore your gifting. Allow him to pour more gifting into you. Don’t demand perfection. If you do you will miss out on the majority of what he has for you. God will use you in new ways as you pray to that end. 

Prayer 5. “Give Me Favor
Ask God for greater effectiveness.

As God moves in your life, he gives you his favor and you are able to move forward with momentum. One of the first things you will need is a cadre of people to support you in your mission. You will need a team to help carry out the mission God has called you to. His favor needs to rest upon you if you hope to walk out the vision he has given. 

A prayer that goes hand in hand with this one is this:

Prayer 6. “Bring Contagious People To Me”
Jesus prayed this with slightly different wording.
After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go. 2 Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. 3 Go your way; behold, I send you out as lambs among wolves. Luke 10:1-3, NKJV 

The key verse is Luke 10:2, “Pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” A friend of mine encourages people to set their watches and cell phone alarms to sound at 10:02 every day to remind them to pray in agreement that the Lord would send laborers into the harvest. Thus twice a day (AM and PM) people all over the globe are praying in agreement that God will send out workers into the harvest field. A great reminder!

Spend time with those who have the outreach virus. We catch it from others more than we are taught it in a head-to-head fashion. It’s about catching outreach. You don’t so much learn about it in a classroom setting. It’s vital that we walk with those who are already fluent in outreach. Catch on as you catch it from those who have it. Better yet, let’s pray our way forward.

The Ideal-Sized Congregation? Try 500! by Steve Sjogren

congregationGreat churches come in a variety of sizes, very large ones, medium-sized ones and smaller ones.

Some are frustrated with the mega church scene in our day for a variety of reasons. It is a mistake to discount the vital role mega churches play in God’s strategy for reaching the world. God has in mind to use mega churches in great ways in our day. Above all else he wants to redeem these churches to do great works of evangelism across America. Done rightly such churches can serve as catalysts for the greater community they find themselves in so that churches of all sizes can gain confidence for evangelism.

I believe the most efficient church size is…500.
I stated this conclusion several years ago in a book based on the numerous observations made in that book (Making A Good Church Great, Regal, 2010). I am more convinced now than ever that my original hunch was correct.

Ponder this: it would be more productive to produce 10 life-giving churches of 500 in weekend attendance than in building one mega church of 5,000. I believe there is abundant evidence to make the point that the per capita level of spiritual vitality is usually greater at a medium-sized church versus a single mega one. The individual Believer will likely evidence greater fruit of discipleship in medium sized churches than in mega ones.

Mega church pastors are called by God to accomplish great things.
I don’t wish anything ominous upon the shoulders of my mega church brethren, yet it is a fact that to whom much is given much is required. Those who lead very large congregations will stand before God in the not too distant future to give an account of the way they acted as stewards of the provision of God in their time as the leader of an immense congregation with immense resources.

How did I do as a teacher? Did I boldly and lovingly present to my people the uncompromising truth of the Gospel?
How did I do as a model? Did I show my people the life of Jesus through my life?
Did we do the work of evangelism? Did we consistently, profoundly seek to bring our city to Jesus?
Were the poor shown an abundance of the mercy of God?

Such questions put the fear of the Lord in me. With this burden of responsibility in mind I don’t miss a day of my time of leading a mega church. I pray mercy upon you if you are a pastor in a congregation of this sort.

If you are a pastor in another size congregation you have it easier in many ways. Pray for mega church pastors near you. I hope you will mutually stir up the “love and good deeds” Scripture calls us to walk in.


Steve Sjogren is a veteran church planter and pastor of five churches in he US and Europe, several of which have grown to mega church status. He is currently operating in his ideal role by leading an outward-focused congregation of 500 in the Greater Portland area. He is the author of several best-selling books and many free PDF booklets. The Steve Sjogren Blog is published daily as a focus on evangelism, outreach and the power of the Spirit to accomplish this.

Reaching Artists, Actors, and Musicians in Hollywood by Richard Rossi

“You’re missionaries to Hollywood,” the Holy Spirit said to my wife Sherrie and I. We were shocked.

We met and married at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University in 1984, a fundamentalist college in which we were forbidden to attend the movie theatre and taught that Hollywood was Sodom and Gomorrah. Deep down, we knew Jesus was a friend of sinners, and He never met a city He couldn’t change.

After Sherrie and I graduated Liberty, we returned to my hometown of Pittsburgh to preach and plant churches. For many years, I suppressed by creative instincts and worked solely as a pastor and healing evangelist.

Our ministry grew to healing services that drew thousands of people, but the flames of our marriage and ministry died when I began suffering from depression that stemmed from childhood abuse. I was trying to heal the world without healing myself, and became powerless and burned out.

I had resentment towards God. When people said, “God really uses you,” I replied, “I’m tired of being used.”

I experienced a rise and fall that landed me into a restoration process which included going to Healing for the Nations, a ministry in Atlanta that restores burned out leaders. I also enrolled in a twelve step program that continues with my participation in several recovery meetings a week.

Believing in God’s redemption for ourselves and others, we packed our belongings in a U-Haul. With our two children in tow, we made the three thousand mile journey west on a wing and a prayer, with no job or ministry position awaiting and $500 to our name. Little did we know, Hollywood would minister to us just as much as we would to Hollywood.

Sherrie and I felt led to read the bible cover to cover praying for insight into how to reach out to a culture of bohemians. From the opening pages of Genesis, God spoke to us as we read.

“I am the Master Artist, and I love to support other artists. As My Spirit hovered over creation in the beginning, I hover over you as you create today. Creativity shows you are made in My image. Your creativity is a part of My creativity.”

We discovered a spiritual hunger in Hollywood. On a prayer walk up Beachwood Drive leading to the famed Hollywood sign, the Spirit said, “I am transforming Hollywood into Holywood. My Son Jesus is the Bright and Morning Star, and His light can reach the stars.”

Soon actors, artist, producers, porn stars and painters began meeting in our small apartment to discuss their spiritual journey. Some were agnostic, some New Age, and some from Christian backgrounds that they felt suppressed their creativity.

We read the Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25, learning that God gave each of us talents and we must take the risk to follow where those talents lead. After praying for each other and our creative callings, we shared a potluck dinner.

A woman with prophetic gifting prayed and spoke. “The movies that will come out of this gathering will be a movement of My Spirit,” she said with fire in her eyes. “A city on a hill cannot be hid.”

We returned to God together. As part of my amends, I determined what God was doing would be built on Christ, and not my personality.

When God directed us to make movies, I played catch up and educated myself on film history by borrowing films from the local library and taking film classes at the community college. The European masterpieces of Bergman and Fellini gave me an idea: I could make a film as an allegory for my experience to share the gospel with others.

I began writing and directing a movie entitled “Sister Aimee: The Aimee Semple McPherson Story” about the 1920’s famed female evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson. The film came out of my brokenness, and the brokenness of others who were drawn to help.

We made the film on a shoestring budget of five thousand dollars, but it was honored at the Screen Actor’s Guild with a special screening that sold out within twenty four hours. When I stood before the 500 members of the guild who came, I spoke about God’s ability to work through broken, wounded people. I was speaking as much about myself as I was Sister Aimee.

I identified with Sister Aimee, because she was a conduit for healing for others, but struggled to get healing in her own life and relationships. When I was in the healing ministry, the higher I was up on the pedestal, the more isolated and depressed I became.

Sister Aimee was nominated for Best Film in Milan, set an attendance record at Quentin Tarentino’s New Beverly Cinema, and was the first of a half dozen films to come out of the Hollywood house church network Sherrie and I started to reach artists. Made by our members, these movies are now distributed worldwide in Blockbuster, Netflix, and Amazon.

Art is an eternal seed, reaching not only multiple countries but multiple generations. Those who work together artistically form a natural bond built around the three C’s: Christ, Creativity, and Community.

A high percentage of our participants are unbelievers drawn to the love of God that treats all people equally. A celebrity sits on the couch at a house church gathering beside the homeless person. The only difference is we let the homeless person use the shower and take the food in the refrigerator, and we protect celebrities by keeping who attends confidential.

Our gatherings of artists meet house to house, confessing our sins to each other and praying for healing, but we break from this sometimes to create new work. The film set then becomes the church.

We serve artists by allowing them time to process the injuries afflicted on them by religion and guiding them to relationship with the Great Artist. We use our collective creativity to share the gospel.

We call our Hollywood ministry Eternal Grace, because the theme of our outreach is grace. Grace saves us and gives us hope.

Some Christians wanted me to edit out of my film and my new novel the struggles characters go through, like Aimee’s divorce, breakdown, and morals trial. Because we chose to show God’s grace working in her weakness, the film reached many outside the church who are tired of preachers presenting a facade that Christians are perfect.

My new novel “Stick Man” tells the story of a young artist’s journey from legalism to love. I wrote it for my own catharsis and healing after my Dad died.

I prayed that Stick Man would bring healing to others who have experienced loss in life or in love. God has answered prayer, as I am receiving letters and e-mails from fans of the novel who have been touched by it.

Like my characters in Stick Man and Sister Aimee, I’ve discovered through my participation in recovery and therapy an eternal grace that is perfected in our weakness.

We are recovering from religion, reclaiming our creativity, and creating new work to share our faith and experience with others. Production is now under way on our latest film “Baseball’s Last Hero: The Roberto Clemente Story.”

Open your heart to the Great Creator and His creativity. A ministry adventure awaits you that will make a difference in the world, and is beyond your wildest dreams.

Richard Rossi Richard Rossi is a multi-medium artist. He works as a writer, an Academy Award considered filmmaker, an actor, a singer-songwriter, guitarist, and visual artist. Richard lives with his wife of twnety-seven years Sherrie in North Hollywood, with their two children, Karis and Joshua. His novel “Stick Man” and his film “Sister Aimee: The Aimee Semple McPherson Story” are available at Amazon.com You can connect with Richard at http://www.facebook.com/richardrossiactor

 

 

Maverick Minister Richard Rossi Goes Hollywood by Dan Wooding

After working for sixteen years as a church planter, Richard Rossi says that he has heard a “high calling to Hollywood” to use his creativity to share the gospel, and journeyed three thousand miles from Pennsylvania to Hollywood, California.

Richard Rossi

He’s currently shooting his second feature film as a writer-director about Christian baseball player Roberto Clemente, and recently released his controversial coming-of-age novel “Stick Man” onwww.Amazon.com

“I heard the Holy Spirit say, ‘You’re a missionary to Hollywood,’” Rossi said.

His first feature film “Sister Aimee: The Aimee Semple McPherson Story” was nominated for best film in Milan, Italy, and a prior short film he made on McPherson, a female evangelist, was Academy Award-considered in the short film category.

Rossi’s creative work emerges out of Eternal Grace, the Hollywood house church network that he and his wife of twenty-seven years, Sherrie, founded to “reach artists and actors with the gospel and also heal the wounds artists often experience from the church.”

He explained, “The theme of our work and lives is grace. It’s grace that saves us and gives us hope.”

Book cover

Rossi’s new novel “Stick Man” tells the story of a young man’s journey from legalism to love. Though Rossi won’t say what percentage of the novel is semi-autobiographical, he admits his own odyssey from his alma mater (Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University) to his current grace-orientation was a basis of the character’s journey.

“I had to recover from aspects of rigid religion that were abusive,” Rossi said. “I think my novel ‘Stick Man’ is embraced by believers and unbelievers alike because of the honesty about the toxic teachings sometimes found in fundamentalist churches that supplant the saving gospel of grace.”

Like “Stick Man”, the audience for his films have transcended Christian categorization. “Sister Aimee” set attendance records at New Beverly Cinema, a Los Angeles theater owned by Hollywood heavyweight director Quentin Tarentino, and screenings at the prestigious Screen Actors Guild (SAG) in Hollywood sold out within twenty-four hours.

“There were some in the church who wanted me to edit out of ‘Sister Aimee’ some of the trials Aimee McPherson went through, like her divorce, breakdown, and overdose,” Rossi said. “Again, because the film showed that God’s grace worked in her life despite her weaknesses, it reached many outside the church who are tired of preachers presenting a facade that Christians are perfect.

Newcomer Mimi Michaels (pictured above in a hands-on healing prayer scene that moves theatre audiences) is Oscar-worthy in her portrayal of “Sister Aimee” from her teenage years through her controversial death at age fifty-four. Mimi went to LaGuardia High school, the “FAME” high school for the top young actors in the country, where she excelled as Best Actress

“Like my characters in ‘Stick Man’ and ‘Sister Aimee’, I’ve found through my personal participation in twelve step programs and therapy, that God’s grace is perfected in our weakness,” Rossi added.

“If we’re going to reach the world for Christ in the twenty-first century, we must embrace the arts and our own humanity and share the gospel because we need grace as much as the person we’re preaching to.”

Paul Levy, an advisor to Rossi, said, “Based on Blockbuster and Netflix rentals, Amazon sales, theatrical screenings, and those who contacted us through the film’s website (www.aimeesemplemcphersonmovie.com), which has a visible counter, ‘Sister Aimee’ reached over seventy-five thousand people who opened their hearts to the gospel the first year.

“The film is a work of genius shot on a shoe-string for less than five thousand dollars, the lowest budgeted film to be bought and stocked in all the Blockbuster stores; so in essence, Richard has shared the gospel worldwide on Blockbuster’s nickel.”

Production is now under way on Rossi’s new baseball film, “Baseball’s Last Hero: The Roberto Clemente Story.”

Eternal Grace church has raised half of the budget and they are believing the resources will continue to come.

“The Spirit has been speaking to people I don’t even know from different parts of the world to send gifts to help us share the gospel,” Rossi said.

Media Note and Links:

To donate to the work of Eternal Grace online, visit www.paypal.com and send contributions to the e-mail eternalgracechurch@yahoo.com or mail to: Eternal Grace, 5030 Whitsett Avenue, Suite One, North Hollywood, CA 91607, USA.

To read Richard Rossi’s new novel ‘Stick Man’, visit this page on Amazon:www.amazon.com/Stick-Man-long-awaited-coming—age/dp/1456368680/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1296939460&sr=8-2

Sister Aimee film: http://www.aimeesemplemcphersonmovie.com

Roberto Clemente film: http://www.facebook.com/clementemovie

Eternal Grace Church: http://www.eternalgracechurch.com

Interview Requests: To interview Richard Rossi, e-mail richardrossiactor@yahoo.com


Dan Wooding, 70, is an award winning British journalist now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 47 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS) and was, for ten years, a commentator, on the UPI Radio Network in Washington, DC. He now hosts the weekly “Front Page Radio” show on KWVE in Southern California which is also carried on the Calvary Radio Network throughout the United States. The program is also aired in Great Britain on Calvary Chapel Radio UK. Besides this, Wooding is a host for His Channel Live, which is carried via the Internet to some 200 countries. You can follow Dan on Facebook under his name there or at ASSIST News Service. He is the author of some 44 books. Two of the latest include his autobiography, “From Tabloid to Truth”, which is published by Theatron Books. To order a copy, press this link.Wooding, who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, has also recently released his first novel “Red Dagger” which is available here

 

Original article from: http://www.assistnews.net/Stories/2011/s11020037.htm

The Power of Words by Steve Sjogren

What to Say / What Not to Say

The verbal encounter we have with people as we are doing outreach is vital. That is, what we say – and what we don’t say — can make or break an encounter in outreach. There are ways of saying things that are more effective than others. We don’t want to say whatever pops into your head in general. We are connecting with people who are by and large are fearful, mistrusting, and even though they are curious about what we are doing they are at the same time not willing to put their trust in us — after all we are total strangers. The best way to do outreach verbally is to take a bit of time to think through what it is that we are trying to accomplish. As we are doing outreach to large numbers of people in our community we have lots of a opportunities to convey a verbal message as well as the strong action of giving them a gift – either something physical or a service.

We are wise to say just enough but not too much that they would draw back. I recommend we convey the following:

1. “This is free…”

2. “…this is to show you God’s kindness…”

Then stand back and watch what God does. Sometimes we will have people draw into the action and ask questions about why we are doing this. At other times we are just scattering seeds that are going to bear fruit over the long haul as their hearts are conditioned.

This matter of verbalizing with people you are connecting with is something that will grow as you invest more time to the process of outreach. You will learn the more ideal ways of saying things that fits in your neck of the woods.

I bless you to live, learn and grow in your outreach efforts!