Big Church Festival God Story
By Tiffany Atkins, God Story from Krista, Jesus Film Project staff
“Can I ask you just one question?”
I asked two girls as they glanced at our table in the Expo tent.
“It’s a visual” I told them, “so you will have to come with me.”
They were intrigued, so I brought them over to our booth, where we had the Soularium cards spread across our table.
I asked “Which picture describes your connection with God?”
Immediately they began to sort through the variety of pictures looking to answer the question. After a minute, each of them picked out a unique photo.
“Why that picture?” I asked.
The girls took turns sharing how they were growing in their desire to connect with God, and had even just returned from a pilgrimage to Lourdes. They said after their pilgrimage, something told them they needed to ‘get more serious about God.’ So when they heard about Big Church Festival, they knew they had to go. I wanted to hear more. But at this point in the evening, the Expo was beginning to close down for the night, and security was asking people to finish up.
Oli, who was at the table with me, asked if the girls would like a FOUR bracelet. They eagerly took them. As they ran their fingers over the icons on the bracelet, I asked if they knew what the symbols meant. “We have no idea – can you tell us?” they asked. So, starting with the first icon, the heart, I walked them through the gospel using the Four, asking clarifying questions, answering theirs.
They were totally focused, leaning forward over the bracelets, seeming to really understand. But just as I was getting to the ‘?’ decision icon, event security approached us and asked us to vacate the building.
Jeff, my husband, engaged security in conversation, while I grabbed a KGP booklet and walked these two through the prayer, explaining the significance of making a personal decision for Christ.
“Does that make sense?” I asked. They were apprehensive, asking “how do we know – would we feel different?”
Attempting to explain that faith is not a feeling, but more of a commitment, I shared with them about the day I got married. It was a gorgeous day, I was marrying the man I loved, I felt beautiful. But as I stood at the altar I didn’t see doves descend, nor did I feel any different. I realized that it wasn’t just about my feelings at that moment, it was about the big picture, and this was a commitment I was declaring. Receiving Christ is similar, it isn’t about feelings, but it is declaring a commitment, and act of the will.
I watched the light go on for both of them, so I asked if they wanted to make that commitment to Jesus. They said yes of course! So, the three of us read the prayer together, and hugged as we said Amen. And just in time. Our friendly security guard had cut the lights and was coming to usher us out into the rain.
As we got to the door, we scribbled all of our contact info, and I told them someone from Agapé would connect with them soon. We said our goodbyes, and ran back to our camp in the rain, praising God for this divine appointment.