Soul Hunter

by | May 3, 2011 | Charisma Archive

 Soul HunterEvangelist targets outdoorsmen with adventurous gospel message.

Look around your typical church and
you’ll notice a common theme: There are more women than men. Evangelist
Jay Lowder, founder of Jay Lowder Harvest Ministries based in Wichita Falls, Texas, is working to get
more men saved—and attending church—through events that target big,
strong (and lost) outdoorsmen. Lowder partners with churches and
ministries to host his Adventure Weekend, which offers events for the
entire family but includes “manly” activities exclusively for the guys
on Saturday night.

“Most of these guys would never in a
million years walk through the door of a church unless it was [for] a
wedding or a funeral,” says Lowder, who carries some clout among hunters
since ESPN Outdoors published an article on his turkey-hunting skills. “These guys don’t realize that there is an actual motive behind all this.”

For the men-only event, a church parking
lot is transformed into an outdoor exhibition hall, complete with car
and motorcycle shows, trophy mounts, golf-equipment demonstrations,
sports clinics and hunting classes. Lowder gives away elk-hunting and
Canadian fly-fishing trips, expensive rods and reels, trained highbred
hunting dogs and more. The event concludes with a “beast feast” meal at
which Lowder presents the gospel in a low-key way through colorful
hunting and fishing lessons.

“I don’t just get up and preach John
3:16. I tell four stories about what I’ve learned while hunting and
fishing,” Lowder says. “I use terms like targets, decoys, blood trails and bad decisions to explain the gospel to men who aren’t familiar with the church—because those are terms they can understand.”

Indeed, Lowder’s analogies include
explaining how deer hunters follow blood trails. Sometimes, even if the
hunter makes a perfect hit, the deer runs. To find the deer, the hunter
has to follow the blood trail. Lowder ties that back to Christ by
explaining he’s on a blood trail that started 2,000 years ago. 

Likewise, the evangelist compares looking
through the scope of a gun—and how hunters use the cross as a measure
to make sure they are on track for the hit—to what Jesus did for all men
at the cross. Lowder says typically more than 200 men come to Christ
during an Adventure Weekend.

“Churches have become really good at
building country clubs where people look like us and dress like us and
think like us,” he says. “And we’re also good at getting folks from
other churches to move to our church because we have better music or a
bowling alley. But what we haven’t done is reach out to unchurched
people—men who have never heard the gospel.”

Lowder is working to grow the Adventure
Weekend outreach with corporate sponsorships from outdoor brands such as
Benelli, Beretta, Winchester and Remington. His vision is to pack civic
centers and build an environment in which men feel comfortable and
uninhibited so they will lay their machismo aside and receive Jesus.

“At these events, we’re seeing men
publicly stand and say they are lost and hurting,” Lowder says. “A lot
of these guys are very successful, but inside they feel their life
amounts to nothing. They hear this good news that everything they have
been looking for can be found at the cross. They recognize they need
this God-man named Jesus Christ, and they accept Him.”

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Is the False Prophet Alive and Well on Planet Earth?

Is the False Prophet Alive and Well on Planet Earth?

Note: As the World Economic Forum rolls out the "Great Reset’"—and a new poll shows 77% of the public is concerned "microchip implants will be used to usher in a never-before-seen level of totalitarian control"—an Israeli professor and New York Times bestselling...

Knowing the Character of God When It Matters Most

Knowing the Character of God When It Matters Most

If you have found yourself in the direct path of a searing fire in life, your bravest choice is to recognize who God is and then glorify Him as Lord. If you refuse to recognize the character and goodness of God when the temperature of life is uncomfortably high, you...

Don’t Make ‘Parties’ as an Excuse for Over-Indulging

Don’t Make ‘Parties’ as an Excuse for Over-Indulging

I love a party or any get together where there is food. How about you? However, it is a big excuse many use for not losing weight. I had this excuse. It went something like this, “I can’t lose weight because I want to eat at family gatherings, parties, church carry-in...

Relax and Let the Holy Spirit Work in You

Relax and Let the Holy Spirit Work in You

Here’s an honest confession: I struggle to rest in the Lord. Maybe I’m a bit compulsive, but I find it difficult to be still and know that God is working when I can’t see what He’s doing. When I need the Lord to do something in my life, I tend to “help Him” do it. But...

3 Qualities of Successful Kingdom Leaders

3 Qualities of Successful Kingdom Leaders

If you grew up in the 1990s, you knew Mike. Michael Jordan, that is. It was spectacular to watch him play basketball. He’d make “impossible” shots with only three seconds left on the clock and win the game, It happened … for years! What you might not know is that he...

RECENT ARTICLES

How to Operate in the Power Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told the apostles in Acts 1:8 (NLT), “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.” Jesus promises a gift that would give them comfort, power,...
Messianic Rabbi: Make the Choice to Be an Outsider

Messianic Rabbi: Make the Choice to Be an Outsider

One of the wonderful things about reading through the Bible is that the more you read it, the more things you find within its pages. No matter how many times you read a verse or a series of verses, because the Bible is a living document, there will always be more to...

Kingdom Economics: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

Kingdom Economics: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress unanimously voted to pass a declaration of independence from Britain. Each signatory was facing death by hanging if the bold experiment failed. The Declaration of Independence declared that all men were created equal and that...

Consider This Unsung Hero of the Bible

Consider This Unsung Hero of the Bible

Sometimes, I think Martha in the Bible gets a bad rap! I am not saying that Jesus labeled Martha at all. Please hear me out. But I think we would be wise to avoid picking up and holding onto some of the dynamics in this potential sibling rivalry between Martha and...

Prophetic Word: We Are Entering the Books of Acts

Prophetic Word: We Are Entering the Books of Acts

On the morning of June 5, 2022, I was praying in preparation for the Arise Women’s Summit I was hosting near Knoxville, Tennessee, when the Lord took me into an encounter. I found myself in the library of heaven standing before a giant staircase made of extremely...

The Church Revived: 3 Keys to the Emerging Move of God

The Church Revived: 3 Keys to the Emerging Move of God

During the past two years, I believe the church at large has been in a season of returning to God. Repentance is crucial when it comes to revival. Scripture shows a clear pattern that repentance precedes the outpouring of the Holy Spirit (see Joel 2:12-28 and Acts...

How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

All of us at some point will hit a place of getting the wind knocked out of us. We all experience unexpected detours and times when there seems to be no way out. But there is One who lives in us, the Lord Jesus Christ, who gives us the strength to overcome obstacles....

Pin It on Pinterest