MIAMI, FL – Once again, ACM joined Sports Fan Outreach International (SFOI) for the annual Super Bowl Outreach. This year found us in the tropical breezes of South Florida heralding the Gospel of Christ to hundreds of thousands piling into the Metro-Miami area for football’s biggest game. Nearly 100 brethren atteneded the outreach split up into 8 teams. I was privileged to lead a team of gifted men.
Our first day on the street found us across from the NFL Fan Experience at Bay Front. The Lord gave us a wonderful spot right on a corner across from the festivities. There was alos a 7-11 right behind us which made it convenient to grab a snack or use the restroom. God really spoiled us our first day out! The location also provided plenty of concrete around from the buildings to bounce sound off. The preaching carried for about a city block!
Throughout the day the preaching continued, and even turned up a famous surprise. ACM Evangelist Eric Madia was preaching when NFL Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin walked by, gave a “Amen” and fist bump, and took a Gospel tract. Nine of the 12 men on our team preached multiple times.
During Super Bowl outreaches, Fridays are usually the most calm of the 3-day weekend of festivities. However, as evening approached, things escalated a bit. I was preaching the last sermon for the evening, as a couple of Roman Catholics walked by and ended up in a pretty lively exchange (WATCH VIDEO). They denied salvation by faith and boasted in the perverted view of Communion that Rome teaches. Pray for them.
Our second day found us at party central — South Beach. The main street was shut down to vehicular traffic. Many cafes and restaurants extended their dining areas out into the street. Along the other side of the street between the side walk and the beach found Fox Sports broadcasting live. We setup in between on the grass. There was a gentle slope that provided a slight, natural elevation.
South Beach is usually a bustling area during such events. However, our day was overshadowed by a constant threat of rain with heavy clouds snuffing out any chance of sunlight. Eventually, in late afternoon and through most of the evening, the clouds made good on their threat and rain it did. However, God even used the rain for His glory as it caused crowds to huddle underneath awnings of local storefronts. This provided captive audiences that we could preach to.
Just as the day before, the passersby seemed plagued by apathy. There seemed to be no concern or desperation in the least bit for them to consider their eternity. As I was praying and considering how to engage them, I thought of the Scripture recounting Christ and the blind beggar, Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46-52). There was a desperation for not just physical sight, but spiritual sight on Bartimaeus’ behalf. I engaged them posing that question. (WATCH VIDEO.)
Just like the previous night, I ended up in another discussion with another Roman Cathoic. This time, the man approached a brother on our team while he was preaching. I was able to reason with him (WATCH VIDEO). Pray for him.
Day 3 – Super Bowl Sunday
While other teams headed over to HardRock Stadium for the big game, I convinced SFOI head Bill Adams to allow me to take my team back to South Beach. The weather was to be sunny and the street filled with watch parties. By God’s grace we were not disappointed as crowds swelled into South Beach for pre-game parties building up until game time.
As the crowds grew, we continued to fill the air of South Beach with the sound of the Gospel of Christ and blanket the area with tracts. Over the course of the day, many Gospel tracts were given along with several conversations with both believers and non-believers alike. As Nathaniel completed our day preaching the last sermon before kickoff, Dan, Heath, and I found ourselves in probably the best one-on-one exchange of the day (for me the whole weekend). A Muslim man named Kareem stopped by out of curiosity as he read the sign Dan was holding displaying John 3:3. Our conversation lasted for almost 40 minutes. As we explained the Gospel and the work of Christ, his best efforts to justify himself exposed the works-righteousness teachings of Islam. Though he would not recant his Muslim faith, he agreed to take a tract and consider Christ. (WATCH VIDEO.) But what a great way to end our time of the Super Bowl Outreach.
This was my first year as a team leader at the Super Bowl Outreach. Though it limited the time I was able to preach, it was a joy to experience shepherding men out in the field. Praying and looking after other brothers is a different type of joy, but one that I’ll always remember for sure.
All in all, the outreach was a success. I never tire of returning back to camp and hearing story after story from other brothers of how God used them that day out in the field. Some stories are joyful, while others are sad recounting folks rejected the offer of eternal life in Christ.
Soli Deo Gloria!