harvest america, local texas event

Peru's David and Goliath

     

We all know the story of David and Goliath. We have all faced giants in our lives. Our giants, however, don’t only come in the form of nine-foot-tall Philistines. Sometimes, a giant can be as benign looking as a seven-year-old friend who refuses countless invitations to come to church. That was the case for a Peruvian boy living on the outskirts of Lima, whose name was also David.

This David’s Goliath was his friend Marcos. Both seven years old, they lived in the overwhelming poverty that surrounds Lima. But David knew that Marcos’ poverty was deeper than his own because Marcos lived in a world without God and without hope. David had found hope at the little church he attended. He found friends, he found a place he could play games and sing songs, and he found adults that loved him and taught him the stories about Jesus from the Bible. And David wanted more than anything for his friend Marcos to find those same things.

David would show up at Marcos’ house on Sunday mornings to invite him to church only to be rejected by Marcos, who chose instead to play soccer with other kids in the street. David was insistent, coming back week after week. One Sunday morning, he knocked on Marcos’ door and Marcos told his family to tell David he wasn’t home. When he refused leave, Marcos finally told him to just “go away.” Two hours later, Marcos opened the door to go outside and play, and there was David, waiting. “Why are you still here?” he asked David. Through tears, David responded that he wanted his friend to have the same joy he had found by going to his church.

Overwhelmed by his friend’s persistence and tears, Marcos relented. He went to church with David and soon began to understand why his friend had been so insistent. It wasn’t long before he was enveloped into the activities at the church and the after-school programs run by Compassion International, through which David was being sponsored. In time, an overseas sponsor was found for Marcos whereby he could receive all the benefits and security of food, clothing, and education. For several years, they absorbed themselves in Bible reading, singing, and participating in group after-school activities. However, because Marcos’ parents were against him being involved with the church, he was frequently punished for not being home on time.

 Then, one day his mother gave him some devastating news. She told him that she had cancer. After months of treatment, her condition worsened. Finally, the doctors gave up and sent her home with a prognosis of just six months to live. Marcos and his newfound church family began to pray.

To his surprise, his mother showed up at church during a service one evening. Marcos was elated, until he realized she wasn’t there to worship, but to take him home. God had different plans. Through the service and love of those she met, she ended up giving her life to Christ. Not long after that, her spiritual healing was followed by a miraculous physical healing. After much prayer on her behalf, she went back to the doctors and learned that the cancer was gone! Marcos looks back on those days of “miracles” with awe and thankfulness for how God was guiding his life.

As he continued to grow in his faith through his teen years and into his adult years, God continued to add blessings upon blessings. His father, an alcoholic for many years, committed his life to Christ as well. His brothers and sisters also responded to the gospel and became part of the church. Marcos excelled in his studies, received technical training, learned computer and business skills, and lifted himself out of poverty. He joined the worship team as a drummer. He learned what it meant to have real hope. His dedication and passion eventually led him to a job working with Compassion International, the very ministry that carried him through the poverty of his youth.

Twenty-nine years later, Marcos says if it wasn’t for the persistence of his friend David, “and because of the tears he shed for me, I may not have ever come to know the Lord.”

Today, they are both grown men with families, working in their respective neighborhoods in Lima. They attend church regularly and they teach their children to love Jesus, and to share His love with others. While they still live in a city where poverty abounds, poverty no longer lives in them!

And it all happened because one little David took on a Goliath named Marcos with nothing else but persistence and tears.

It’s stories like these that make the partnership with Harvest America and Compassion International a perfect fit. While Harvest is committed to proclaim the gospel in arenas and through live streaming across the nation, freeing men and women from the poverty of sin, Compassion reaches out to young children pulling them out of the mire of hopelessness and despair through US sponsorships. It’s a partnership of both declaring the gospel and demonstrating the gospel.

That is why this year, through Harvest America in Dallas, Texas, and through our 29th annual SoCal Harvest, we are committing to sponsor 3,000 young children through Compassion. In this way, we will not only fill the hearts of thousands of hopeless people with the gospel, but we will also fill the needs and hearts of thousands of hopeless children.

"Greg Laurie is not only a personal friend, but is one of the great communicators of the gospel of Jesus Christ in our generation. They have written him up to be the evangelist of the future and he is. I highly recommend him."
Billy Graham

Billy Graham, Evangelist and Author

"Greg Laurie is a dynamic pastor, gifted evangelist, and trusted friend. Prestonwood is thrilled to be an anchor church in Harvest America. I hope you will be a part of this amazing opportunity too."
Dr. Jack Graham

Dr. Jack Graham, Senior Pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church

"When it comes to reaching the lost, I’m grateful that every generation has a Billy Graham, and Greg Laurie is a Billy Graham to our generation. Gateway Church wholeheartedly supports Harvest America, and I would encourage every pastor and church to partner with them to reach their cities for Christ."
Robert Morris

Robert Morris, Founding Senior Pastor, Gateway Church

"God has mightily used Greg in so many different ways and at many different venues. Because of him, many people are in the kingdom through Harvest America, the crusades, a dynamic church, a great testimony, a great man. I pray that you will join me and partner in this years Harvest America outreach."
Dr. Tony Evans

Dr. Tony Evans, Senior Pastor, Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship

"I couldn't be more excited about the upcoming Harvest event and love the Harvest model. You can bring your neighbor or family member, listen to the gospel of Jesus Christ be preached and proclaimed faithfully, and then you can follow up with them. I couldn't encourage you more to come sit in and listen to the gospel message being proclaimed here in Dallas, Texas."
Matt Chandler

Matt Chandler, Lead Pastor, The Village Church

"Greg Laurie has been my friend for many years, and in that time I've seen God work through Greg's evangelistic preaching to reach thousands upon thousands of lives for Jesus Christ. Hosting Harvest America in your church is a unique and powerful way for the gospel to reach people in your community too."
James MacDonald

James MacDonald, Senior Pastor, Harvest Bible Chapel

"There is no questions that Greg Laurie is making a huge impact for Christ and that lives are being changed by the thousands through Harvest America. If you are a follower of Jesus, this is the perfect opportunity to invite someone who doesn't know Christ to hear about the life transforming power of the Gospel."
Craig Groeschel

Craig Groeschel, Senior Pastor, Life Church

"Greg Laurie’s focus on the Gospel is why so many Southern Baptist churches and pastors have been involved with Harvest over the past 25 years . . . I strongly encourage you to get involved as well."
Kevin Ezell

Kevin Ezell, SBC North American Mission Board President

"Greg Laurie has been serving the Lord evangelistically since the early 1970s, when God changed his life during the Jesus Movement in Southern California. God has gifted Greg to give a clear, passionate, biblical presentation of the gospel. God uses him to call people to faith in Christ. I hope that you will invite your lost friends to this event, so that they can be saved."
Steve Gaines

Steve Gaines, Senior Pastor, Bellevue Baptist Church, Current President of the Southern Baptist Convention

"Harvest Crusades really helped renew in our church a passion to reach our city. We are still benefiting from the vision for evangelism and empowerment in disciple-making they helped lead us into! I don't know any other way of saying it besides, 'This strategy still works!'"
JD Greear

JD Greear, Senior Pastor, The Summit Church

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