Sarah, Servant Partners staff in San Antonio, Texas, shares of and exciting and prayerful encounter with the man in the red shirt.
Over the summer, La Iglesia Luz en el Barrio, our church, was able to raise enough funds for our first mission trip across country from San Antonio to Los Angeles! One amazing experience we had was going out in small groups to practice ‘treasure-hunting’ prayers with our church. We first ask God if there is any sign, image, or word he wants us to notice, like specific clothing or a person walking a dog. Next we go out together to look for these signs or images God gave us, trusting that they will lead us to those we were to encounter and pray for. It was very exciting for me, but definitely different for many of the people on our trip!
We were split into four smaller groups; one went to the county hospital, two to a large park, and the last to the surrounding area around the church. In prayer, my group received an image of someone in a red shirt.
As soon as we walked into the county hospital, the first thing we saw was a man in a red shirt! The youth began pointing and saying loudly, “Look, that guy has a red shirt! We need to go talk to him! Who’s going to do it??” We walked up to the man and let him know that we were part of a church and that before heading out to pray that day, God gave us an image of a man in a red shirt. We asked if it would it be okay to pray for him.
He looked at us and said, “Man, you don’t know what’s been happening to me the last few days. My girlfriend here has been telling me I need to know God and get right with him. My best friend came and gave me this necklace yesterday and told me God wants me to know Him and get right with him, and now he sends all of you to tell me he loves me and wants me to come to church!”
"...I think he is coming after you and wants your heart."
The leader in our group said, ‘Well, do you think God’s trying to tell you something? Because I think he is coming after you and wants your heart.’ The man in the red shirt became tearful and confessed that he had been living a very bad life and running from God for a long time. This was a sure sign to him that God loved him and wanted him to return. He then let us pray for him and his girlfriend in the hospital, and everyone in our small group left thanking and praising God for speaking through us.
We got to pray for quite a few others in our time at the hospital. It was very encouraging when all four groups came back together because many of our youth shared stories of running up to others to pray for them and of the images God gave them! It was a great time of learning more about God’s greater mission, as well as learning the meaning of true community among our own church.