Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Good In The Hood!

This song by Tye Tribbett has now been named my unofficial theme song for our Urban Outreaches into the tougher parts of Metro Atlanta. It just seems like the Kingdom breaks out in an awesome way in the poorer “hood” areas. It seems like every time we go out there, people respond to the message of the Kingdom. There are healings, lives are changed through prophetic words and people are impacted greatly.


One of my favorite things that I personally love about being in the hood is being white. Yeah, I said it. People don’t know what to think when some crazy white dude goes rolling around the hood talking to people. To make it better, I normally am not alone and regularly have several folks with me. This makes quite the scene in most neighborhoods we go to and actually helps us get our foot in the door.

Case in point:

A couple of weeks ago we head into a new neighborhood in a real rough area of town. Folks are out, it’s getting warmer and everyone is out having a good time. Lots of folks are getting drunk and there’s quite a “ruckus” going on. Enter stage left. I and several other VERY white people come marching into this situation and there is a group of ladies standing to our left. Their tongues nearly fall out of their mouth and their eyes are huge looking at us and wondering what in the heck we were doing there! I look at one of the main ladies and am standing probably only 15-20 feet away from her. I look at her, see her staring at me and say to her, “I can see you, you know”. She quickly checks herself and realizes that she has been staring, covers her mouth and is obviously embarrassed. I tell her, “It’s ok; I would wonder why this crazy group of white folks is here in my neighborhood too!” The whole group of ladies starts saying that they didn’t say that and I tell them, “You don’t have to say it with your mouth; you’re saying it with your expression!”

So now they are all ears wondering, “Why are these people in the neighborhood?” I tell them that we know Jesus and His Kingdom is on the earth. I tell them that we pray for sick people and God heals them! I ask them if any of them are sick and they say that they are doing fine. We chat a little and one of the ladies in our group gets some prophetic stuff for one of the young ladies. It’s right on! We have their attention and they tell us that we need to pray for a lady several doors down. At the moment they send us to her door, a lady looking very haggard comes to the door, in obvious pain. We start talking to this lady and find out that he has several conditions, but the one giving her the most trouble is congestive heart failure. One of the symptoms is difficulty breathing. We prayed for her and we ALL felt the power of God. She immediately began to breathe totally normally and felt filled with strength! She could hardly believe it and walked up the stairs to her apartment without any difficulty breathing! Come on Jesus!


There was a large, angry group of people on the other side of the street fighting with each other, cursing, yelling and just getting rowdy. I looked at the group and asked the Lord to give me something for one of them. My attention was immediately drawn to a young man sitting in the center. This guy looked like bad news! He looked angry and was definitely giving off the vibe, “STAY AWAY!” As I looked at him, he looked to me like a wolf. Knowing that the lord sometimes uses simple impressions like that, I asked the Lord if He was trying to tell me something. I simply heard in my spirit a reversal of the scripture about wolves and sheep, “This man is a sheep in wolves clothing”. I knew that the Lord was giving me something for him, so I crossed the street towards the group and the young man. As I did, several people scattered, but this guy stayed put. I just walked up to him and told him, “Sometimes God shows me things for people and I believe that He is showing me something for you… Do you mind if I tell you what I see?” he shrugged and said, “sure”.

I started by telling him that the Kingdom of Heaven is right in front of him and that he simply needed to change the way he thinks to see it! Then I began to explain the word I saw for him. I told him that he was a sheep in wolves clothing and that he gives the impression off to many people that he is rough and ruthless, like a wolf. But God knows that he is tender and soft, like a sheep underneath all of that exterior stuff he puts up. He looked up at me like I had just punched him in the stomach! Two young ladies sitting next to him went, “Oh my God!” and started walking away. I was like, “What’s going on? Am I not telling the truth??” They told me that only they would know that and how did I know that? I went on to tell him that God was calling him to live a life without compromise and that he could live for the Lord and never have to pretend anymore. As I spoke to him about his hypocrisy, he broke out in this huge sweat, out of nowhere. It was barely 70 degrees with a breeze out, so there was no natural reason for him to sweat. He swallowed hard, looked up at me and said simply, “You nailed me with that one. Look at me sweating like this, what’s up with that?!”

I told him that he was feeling the power of God and that God was ringing his bell and had his number. I strongly preached the Gospel to him, calling him to repentance and he heard every word. He got up and said he needed to be alone, walking inside the house. I’ll call him a “Pre-Christian”.


The Lord began to show me a simple prophetic picture for her one of the young ladies that was standing by the thug whose mail we just read. When I looked at her, I was simply reminded of a lioness, or female lion. As a lady on our team began to speak to her I was quietly asking the Lord what that meant. The Lord reminded me of how the picture we always see of a lion is of the male and that they are the ones people take pictures of and celebrate. But that in nature, it is the female lioness that did the bulk of the work, taking care of the pride and even doing the hunting for the male lions. The Lord gave me a very simple word for her that her “man” got all the attention and credit when in fact she was the one doing all the work, holding the family together.

I started by telling her that when I looked at her she reminded me of a lioness. When I said that her jaw dropped open, her eyes filled with tears and she started shivering and quivering all over. I knew I was on track so I finished giving her the Word. She was VERY obviously shaken and impacted by what I said, but I still didn’t understand why. I asked her what was up and she told me that lions are very significant to her and she had even named her son “Leo”. In short, God was talking her language! The rest of the word for her described her home life EXACTLY. She was absolutely undone and scared out of her mind. We call these “face plant conversions” like we see in I Corinthians 14:25.

She and her sister both gave their lives to the Lord standing on that curb, directly as a result of the Lord revealing the secrets of their hearts! We have kept up with her and she has invited us into her home to have a Bible Study and to grow in the things of God.

Look out, more good from the hood to come!

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