Showing posts with label evangelism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label evangelism. Show all posts

Friday, January 30, 2015

The Harvest is Plentiful


"The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few." - Luke 10:2

I'm exciting about the ministry work that God has called us to in Joel 2:25. We have been reaching wounded hearts in 104 countries over the past year and seen lives transformed by unconditional love. There is still so much work to be done though. The Harvest is plentiful, but the workers (and resources) are few. 

While there are no paid staff, we have significant costs including video-conferencing, publishing, webhosting, training, and eventually we hope to provide sponsorships for those unable to pay for conferences and retreats.

Based on very conservative estimates (3%), there are at least


217 Million who struggle with Same-Sex Attraction




Many churches refuse to talk with them.  

Others tell them lies.




They are by far the largest DELIBERATELY un-reached people group in the World.





Pax Christi,
Jeremy Schwab
Founder & Executive Director
Joel 2:25 International, Inc.
http://www.Joel225.org
Like us on Facebook: http://www.Facebook.com/Joel225International







Joel 2:25 International, Inc. was incorporated in the state of Texas on November 26, 2013 and is a non-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors and operating under section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code. All donations to Joel 2:25 International, Inc. are tax deductive.  EIN: 46-4342662

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Equally Confusing



I had to apologize to a few of my close friends earlier for losing my temper and making some uncharitable comments in response to their decisions to post the HRC's logo this week on their Facebook profiles in support of redefining Marriage

I explained that my disapproval was NOT about politics. I DO respect their variety of political views and of course the rights of everyone to express those views however they choose.

 
My own calling and mission the last two years has included affirming and encouraging healing for wounded men and women and leading them to the Lord (regardless of orientation). I host four ongoing groups of men in my living room. One of the groups is not related to homosexuality and the other three are for guys in different stages of recovery from homosexuality. I spend an hour or two every night on the phone with guys from all over and about 5 or 6 hours every Sunday. I get really tired sometimes of having to talk about that subject. It has been WORTH it though to be able to play a small part in seeing others heal.


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Most Encouraging and Unexpected Shout-Out

Ok, I fear this will sound prideful, but this was actually a very humbling experience for me this morning. This caught me off guard this morning and was totally unexpected. It made me cry at the moment and then I went numb to it, but I just listened to it again on the Podcast and started crying again. It's definitely the most encouraging thing anyone has ever said to me.

My friend John is the pastor of this new church "Normandy." I went to his service after Mass this morning and he preached on the "Parable of the Sower" (Mark 4:1-20). At the end he pointed to me and referenced my SSA ministry work and the Joel 2:25 M.A.N.S. group I started a while back. He said:
“Jeremy, you are a 30, 60, 100 fold guy. Bro, it is unbelievable. What you have done is unbelievable bro. You are more fruitful than I could ever hope to believe in. I am so proud of you. I can’t even stand it. You are good man. You are a godly man. Bro, I am so proud of you. I’d get into a foxhole with you any day of the week.” 
Here is a link to the audio: http://www.normandychurch.com/sermons/ (February 10th Parable of the Sower - 54:00 mark)

Right before that he had played an audio recording of a story of a simple man in Australia that led tons of people to Christ through street evangelism, but never knew until two weeks before his death that any of them had received his message. That story starts at the 44:00 mark. At the 54:00 mark John talked about wanting to reap a harvest of "30, 60, 100 fold." Then he pointed to me and his comments (54:25 - ) are what blew me away. The entire sermon is awesome as well as all of his other sermons (not just this part that I'm narcissistically pointing out) ;)

Pax Christi,
Jeremy

Friday, January 18, 2013

"Let the Lower Lights be Burning"

"my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge." - Hosea 4:6

In 1871, a ship was approaching the harbor of Cleveland. The captain, noticing only one light as they drew near — that from the lighthouse —asked the pilot if he was quite sure that it was Cleveland harbor, as other lights should have been burning to illuminate the rocks along the harbor mouth. The pilot replied that he was quite sure it was Cleveland, whereupon the captain inquired:

'Where are the low­er lights to mark the shore?'

'Gone out, sir.'

'Can you make the har­bor?'

'We must, or we will per­ish, sir!'


And with a strong hand and a brave heart, the old pi­lot turned the wheel. But alas, in the dark­ness he missed the channel, and with a crash upon the rocks the boat was shiv­ered, and ma­ny lives were lost in a wat­ery grave.
 
As D.L. Moody related the news of this maritime disaster to his congregation, he made this appeal:
"The Mas­ter will take care of the great light-house: let us keep the low­er lights burn­ing!"
Among Moody’s hearers that evening was Mr. Philip P. Bliss, the well-known hymn writer, and the striking story at once suggested to him one of his most popular hymns: "Let the Lower Lights Be Burning."

This song is really powerful for me because so many of my friends and I wrecked our lives on the rocks (just like that ship) in part because the "Lower Lights" that should have been burning were forcefully extinguished in the name of "Tolerance." 

As I started to describe in my (1/8/2013) post "St. Joseph, the Navy Seal," the ministry and evangelism efforts that I've felt God has led me to over the past year has been all about frantically lighting "the lower lights." 


"You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house. Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father." - Matthew 5:14-16


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

"Pray for her!"

I started to pray silently "Lord, bless her... I hope she has a great day..." Then the voice was a bit more direct:  "PRAY FOR HER!"

I felt awkward, but I tried to strike up a conversation by saying "hello." She said "hello" back but didn't say anything else. I thought "well, I tried.. That's all I can do." Finally I turned to her and asked directly if I could pray for her. Then I noticed that her eyes were watering. 




Thursday, March 22, 2012

"You're just bothering people. No one wants to hear from You!"


Last September, I started writing to church pastors and christian counselors about my own experiences in coming out of the "gay lifestyle" and I included information on ministries in their area (like the Courage Apostolate or Exodus International affiliate) as well as other resources in their area (like JiM weekends, Courage Sports Camp, and Adventure in Manhood

I started out writing them all by hand, but then started printing them so I could get them out faster. I still hand-address all of them though. Some of the called me to tell me they didn't know of anyone in their church who struggled with homosexuality, but that they would keep the information handy for the future. (I told them they should just start asking people. j/k ;)

So far, I've sent about 620 letters and I still feel like I should keep writing, but I have a lot of doubts and fears about how these are being received and IF I'm even doing any good or just wasting a lot of money and time. I have a lot of doubts about whether this was the right thing to do or if I was just freaking people out by writing them about THIS issue and even telling them my testimony (3-sentence high-level summary). I didn't specifically ask anyone to respond to me so it's ok that I haven't heard from most of them, but I have a hard time not telling myself stories about what they must be thinking. 

I got a few negative responses last week and another one today. One pastor in Rhode Island seemed really angry with me and emailed me to say:  
"You need to get a life! Don't ever contact me again!" 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"I Thirst for You!"


I'm working on a talk that I'm giving to my "Knights of Columbus" council tomorrow night on the book "Be a Man" by Fr. Larry Richards.

Anyway, I just ran across an AWESOME video and thought you might like it:

Pax Christi,
Jeremy

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Divine Appointment "in the Gayberhood"

I had a really interesting (challenging, but rewarding) experience last night with my guys' bible study group.
(this is the group I mentioned before where we shot the propane tank with the AK 47 on our last retreat: see video here: http://youtu.be/QeTz8efOoEc).

Most of the guys are evangelical protestant. I'm probably the only Catholic in the group, but we've gotten along pretty well. Last night, my friend Jason was leading and he started talking about this concept called "Divine Appointments." It's a bit of Charismatic thing I guess, but mostly it required more boldness than anything else.

He started by asking us to pray for a while and listen for God to speak and to reveal one person to each of us that we needed to pray for or talk to that night.

Then he told us first to ask God to reveal to us a place / location and to write down the first thing that came to mind. At first I saw this cafe in my head, but I kept telling myself "no" because it's in the gay part of town and I KNEW God wouldn't want me going there.

Then Jason said:
"The 1st voice you hear is God's voice. The 2nd voice is you trying to talk yourself out of what you heard from God and the 3rd voice is Satan trying to convince you that you were right and that couldn't have been from God." 

So, I went ahead and reluctantly wrote down "Cafe Brazil in Oaklawn."

Then we were supposed to write down anything that came to mind about a person. I thought of someone wearing a "white sweater, blue jeans and white tennis shoes" - so I wrote that down. Then I thought "No person in Oaklawn would be caught dead wearing THAT!...hello, fashion police?!"  ;)

Anyway, I wanted to scratch it all out, but I left it alone

When everyone was finished and we ended up splitting into small groups and getting into cars to go find the persons we had described and pray with or evangelize them. I was really nervous and freaked out - leading two of my non-SSA friends (who didn't yet know about MY SSA) right into Dallas's GAYberhood. I hadn't been there myself in over a year and it's always a place where people are Lewd, Crude, and Socially Unacceptable (24 hours a day!)

We got there and I started saying "Let's go to a DIFFERENT Cafe Brazil" I'm sure it can't be this one!" but my friends said "NO! We're going here first. It's what YOU wrote down." 

We walked up and there was a guy standing right in the doorway wearing a white sweatshirt, blue jeans, and white tennis shoes.I could tell he was SSA and I froze up.

Jason asked "Is that him? Is that your guy?"