Nearly 900 make commitments to Christ during GO TELL Columbus County, North Carolina Crusade
Amid calls from emergency personnel to stay home during the 1,000-year flood, close to 900 people made commitments to Christ, with more than 500 of those being for salvation, during the Rick Gage GO TELL Columbus County, North Carolina Crusade on Oct. 4-7.
There also were greater than 10,000 in attendance at the South Columbus High School Gymnasium.
Also, the GO TELL and BMX bike teams spoke in seven school assemblies to 4,000 students.
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The students also were encouraged and challenged to be winners in the game of life by the message given by GO TELL youth evangelist Steve Paysen.
Other GO TELL guest speakers included Tony Nolan and Adrian Despres with Newsong as musical guests.
GO TELL Columbus Chair Brenda Jolly said, “After a year of intensive planning, work, organizing, training and praying with all of our hearts, we opened the first night of the crusade amidst predictions of the ‘1,000-year flood’ at South Columbus High School Gymnasium in Tabor City, North Carolina – not the football stadium as we had planned for all those months. We held off making the final decision of whether to proceed or not until 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 4 – mainly due to county emergency agencies broadcasting for people to stay off the roads for their own safety. Our executive team talked it over, prayed and decided to go forward with plans altered to meet inside the school instead of on the field.
“The confirmation for us was when 400+ counselors walked through the door, holding their Bibles, umbrellas and huge smiles. They drove through the rain and wind to be ready to lead others to the Lord. We even had a couple of people telling us we should cancel for the protection of those driving to the crusade. Instead of cancelling, we flooded the airways and social media with the confirmation that the crusade would go on but for everyone to make wise choices about their personal safety and if the roads in their area were not safe, please stay home and PRAY!
“As 7 p.m. neared on Oct. 4, I could barely believe my eyes when people began to arrive and we actually needed an overflow room to hold the audience – close to 1,200 people. That night 80 decisions for Christ were made. It was absolutely the right decision to press on and ignore the enemy’s attempt to cancel.
“Each night the crowd grew – as did decisions – with the culmination of over 300 decisions on Wednesday night. Total decisions that followed, through counseling, were well over 800 people of all ages, walks of life, races and gender. Other opportunities surrounding the week of the crusade yielded 25 decisions at the North Carolina Boys and Girls Home and 19 at two prisons. More than 150 were observed coming forward during the invitation but returned to their seats without following through with counseling. With decisions made prior to the crusade from messages preached by Rick Gage and Steve Paysen plus those at the crusade, we believe the number of decisions for Christ to be close to 1,000. IN THE MIDST OF TERRIBLE WEATHER!
“To me, it was as if God said, “Okay, you have worked, planned and executed on every level possible. Now step aside and watch what I am going to do – and, boy, did HE!
“The rewards extend beyond what our hearts and eyes witnessed at the crusade as Christians are networking together now as never before – regardless of denominations, races, cultures or other man-made boundaries. We believe this number of decisions will double as they now become working Believers and bring family, friends, co-workers and even total strangers to the saving knowledge that Christ died for all and He is waiting for them to simply say yes.
Mrs. Jolly continued, “This saving power of grace was exemplified as we witnessed example after example of people responding to God’s call on their lives. It came powerfully, simply and without hesitation like it did for:
- An 82-year-old man who had spent his entire life in church, even serving as a deacon. He never felt sure he was saved. Now he knows.
- The news reporter who covered the GO TELL Columbus story from the beginning. Conviction set in; and on Monday night, he surrendered his life to Christ.
- A grandfather, father and two children in the same family – the grandfather and father being men who had been prayed for by family members and church family for years.
- A husband, wife and teenage son whose family unit was facing divorce. They reunited in the counseling room, and divorce proceedings were dropped. That family is now committed to Christ!
- Hundreds of teens – big, tough football players, cheerleaders, all races, all ages, surrendering to God’s call, streaming down the bleachers and folding chairs with tear-stained faces.
- The women who came forward even before the invitation was given.
- The man who traveled from two hours away because a friend begged him to come ‘just one night.’ This man lost his son in April to suicide, his fiancée to another man in September and had purchased the gun to take his own life.
“A young man driving his car through a bad neighborhood as he talked with hismom on the phone. In front of him, stretched across the road, were five black teens, trying to block the road. The mom on the phone begged her son to hit the gas and let them know he would not stop – for them to get out of the road. He did so, and all but one scattered off the road. As the driver neared the sole remaining black teen in the street, he slowed down, rolled his window partially down and waited to see what the guy would say. The teen called him ‘a fool’ and said,‘Don’t you know I’m a gangster? The driver responded he was not a gangster but the teen needed to get off the road and quit frightening people. That night at the crusade, the driver in this story was serving as a counselor. As he watched the hundreds of people coming through the doors for counseling, his eyes met the eyes of the same black teen he had encountered earlier that day who came because there was free pizza and stayed to ultimately meet God face to face. The black teen extended his hand to the counselor and apologized for his actions earlier that day and continued to give his life to the Lord as well as a friend who came with him.
“There are many stories that are still coming in, and it’s hard to find a place in our county that has not been touched by the results of God’s move. Everywhere I go, people are commenting on the amazing changes in people’s lives. The vision of people almost running to the altar will be forever burned in my brain and heart, and I am a new person because of what I’ve seen and felt as a member of the best team God ever put together to do His work.
“I’ve been asked several times throughout the process if I would do it again, knowing what I know now. The answer was always yes but sometimes reluctantly due to the frustrations of the moment. If you asked me that same question today, my response would be:‘How much do I need to pay to be a part of this movement?’ TO GOD BE THE GLORY!
“The real work has just begun. Stay tuned as you will hear much more from our county and what we are going to do, with God’s help, to turn the tide against the enemy and win the battle for God,” Mrs. Jolly concluded.
Rev. Roger Parsons, pastor of Old Zion Wesleyan Church, said, “Rick Gage is the ‘real deal.’ His passion for souls is contagious. His ministry is truly anointed.
“This week God rekindled a passion for evangelism in this pastor’s heart. I went to the crusade to help others, and God helped me through Rick and the team,” he said.
“What happened in Columbus County NC needs to happen in every county in America. This is our hope for America!” he added.
Also, Rev. Parsons said, “One couple traveled two hours to be here. It would usually be one hour, but they drove around flooded highways. When the invitation was given to come forward, they rededicated their lives and two-year marriage to Christ.”
Tina Smith said, “My daughter rededicated her life to the Lord on Oct. 5. She is 11 years old, so I just thank you with all my heart for reaching her.”
Outreach Co-Chair Bo Shaw said, “I had a great experience with the GO TELL Crusade. All the planning and preparations were worth its reward with more than 850 souls saved. WOW! STILL EXCITED that God allowed me to be part of the process. The question ‘When is the last time you cried for souls?’ is still echoing in my mind. I refuse to be a professional Christian. I intend on using every tool possible, as God allows, to win souls.
“Rick Gage, what can I say but I’m in awe of the way God uses your ministry. I had the privilege to meet a young man, 16 years old, who was weeping for the salvation of his friends. This could one day be our Rick Gage in Columbus County. To sum it all up, I just want to say, ‘Lord, I thank You!’” Shaw added.
Commenting on this crusade on the GO TELL Facebook page, Dakota Michelle Meece said, “The Kingdom shall increase if faithful laborers will work the fields that have a harvest that is white hot!”
Also on the GO TELL Facebook page about this crusade, Denise Huggins said, “If your youth have not been to GO TELL Camp, I strongly encourage you to sign up and go! If you think the crusade was awesome, GO TELL Youth Camp is just as awesome!”
Smit Williams added, “Thanks for all who brought worship to our county and praise Jesus for showing up and showing out! Thank you, Lord, for all those who will follow You today!”