Kentucky Derby 2015 Testimonials
Jason McGough:
“I had the pleasure of attending this year’s Kentucky derby with 30 or so other saints to lift up the name of Jesus. It was my 1st time attending this outreach, and I may say that it was not short of incredible. We preached multiple times to the crowds, so much that I can’t count the amount. God was truly glorified, and many heard the Gospel. One particular day while my friend Nick O’berry was preaching, a fellow by the name of Brandon stopped to hear his preaching. Brandon was already quite intoxicated and was stumbling about. I asked him to come sit down next to me while Nick was heralding. I asked Brandon if he was a believer. He instantly started to cry and was shaking his head yes. We talked for a while, and I explained to him that when someone is born again they show signs of a new creature. I said that I didn’t know his heart, but from the looks of things, he wasn’t showing any fruit of a believer. So I explained to him that he must repent, and bow the knee to Christ in order to be born again and perhaps God may grant him repentance and eternal life. I made sure to tell him that if God allowed him to continue in this way that it would only lead to jail or worse. I begged him to go home, sleep it off, read the material I had given him, and urged him to beg God for repentance from his sin. I pray Brandon heard the message even through his drunken state, and takes heed to the words and prayers that where spoken over him, by the preaching and the call for repentance. Many claimed Christianity during this event while in a drunken state. Not just the homeless, but the well off folks that attended also. I pray that the day their life ends here on earth that God shows them mercy and grants them salvation. It was an unforgettable outreach with so much love between us. I can’t wait to see every saint again, whether here or in glory.”

Pastor Aaron Brummitt:
“The recent evangelism efforts at the Kentucky Derby were very blessed. Many souls came under conviction of sin and were nigh unto salvation. Additionally, the fellowship amongst brethren and sisters was exceptionally refreshing as we carried our swords into battle. Thank you SFOI For the opportunity to serve our Risen Lord by your side.”

Caleb Davenport:
“I am writing this letter to you as I drive home from Joe’s house to Wooster. Even though we are exhausted from the trip, our knees are sore and we got very little sleep these last two days, what a beautiful weekend Joe and I had in Louisville Kentucky sharing the gospel with people on the streets near Churchill Downs who are trying to find something in this world to make them happy. Many great conversations concerning the gospel of Jesus Christ and the reason and purpose He came into this world. Two conversations sticks out the most. An 83-year-old man said to me after I shared the gospel with Him. “there are three things that I need to do before I die, He said,” he needed to make a will, get his affairs in order and get his life right with God.” I quickly shared with him that his first priority needed to be to make things right with God. He did not disagree and I want to believe that the grace of God has followed him all these years for such a divine appointment that we had on May 1, 2015 on a Friday afternoon in Louisville at the Kentucky Derby. His friend who was with him who I believe truly was a believer said that he would share the gospel with him by going through the Bible later on that night and that he basically had been waiting for someone else to communicate the truth of the gospel with his friend. Another young man today asked me a question after I preached a sermon about the prodigal son. His question was, “how do I repent?” which is a question that usually someone asks only after they are convicted of their sin by the Holy Spirit . God is teaching me in reality what I have believed most of my adult life about salvation and that is it is not our job to talk people into getting saved, It is only our job to share the gospel and to make sure we have the gospel right and let the Holy Spirit and God do the rest. It is not our job to close the deal and to talk people into something that is man-made. Thank you for all of your prayers for the trip and may God continue to use Providence church as a launching pad to reach a lost and dying world for the cause of Christ. Lord willing, Joe and I will see you all tomorrow morning.”

Jenifer Pepling:
“I loved going to the Derby. Being on Bill’s team was a wonderful experience. I would love to be on his team in the future. I was very comfortable through out the outreach both physically and mentally. Thank you so much for the outreach.
I love witnessing to people and I got to witness to tons of people. I loved the open air because I was able to interact with so many people while doing open air.
I was able to talk to one man named Sal. He was a muslim. I walked him through the law and then I asked him if a man raped murdered his friend and the man who did it stood before the judge and said I am sorry I will never do it again and the judge let him go would the judge be a good judge he said no. Sometimes at this point a muslim will say well I would take the justice into my own hands and he did not go down that path so I was hopeful. I asked him if God judged him by the 10 commandments if he would be innocent or guilty. He said he would be guilty, I asked him if he was guilty if he would go to heaven or hell. I told him that his koran said that every would go to hell and then some would be able to walk accross a thread to get to heaven. I told him that Jesus said there was no way from heaven to hell or hell to heaven. I told him that each one of his sins was against and eternal being and he could not pay his own fine since he was not an eternal being. I expalined God sending Jesus to die on the crosss in his place and paying his fine. The conversation took an odd turn about feeding the homeless. We talked about how in some cities it was illegal to feed the homeless and how me and my husband had been stopped from feeding the homeless in Seattle. We talked about how it was the Christians that often gave the most to charities. He thanked me for a nice conversation. It was interesting because one of the guys was preaching and saying that Muhammod is in the grave and his head would swing everytime he said that. I was wondering if he was going to snap but he did not. ”

Pamela Carney:
“Here are 3 accounts. Sorry I tried to keep it short, but there is just too much to say. 🙂

1. The outreach at the Derby was such a blessing to me; to be under such good preaching of the word, and fellowship with other sisters and brothers, was a gift from God! Doing God’s work on an evangelism team was truly exciting and awesome. God showed me how the gifts He gave me, of organization and being a helper, were used at this event. My desire to serve the Lord has increased since participating on this mission and my walk with Jesus, and dependence on Him, has been strengthened.
2. I encountered a demon possessed woman at the very end of the Derby when the Downs was letting all the people out. I had talked to her a couple hours earlier and she was not possessed then. But at the end she circled around our team for about 2 hours. She kept saying we were preaching a false Gospel and that we killed her husband Jesus. After praying for about an hour, I felt led to go to her and rebuke the demon. I commanded the demon to come out of the woman in the name of Jesus. She then started quoting old testament scripture, something about the Pharaoh. I called on Jesus again, and the demon did not come out. But I told the woman we loved her and we wanted to help her. I was peaceful the whole time and had no fear. She put her finger on my chest at one point to push me back, and I gently took her wrist and told her to turn to Jesus that He was her only Hope. I don’t know what happened to her, but I trust the Lord does and will deal with her as He pleases.
You can use that account or this one about Austin, because other than these two instances it seemed like most of the conversations were with drunk people and no one was serious about talking to me about God. (I did pass out alot of tracts though 😉
3. Austin was a young man who worked for the Derby who was stationed on our corner (Ken’s team) with a bull horn to guide people to get general seating tickets. I noticed that he was listening to the preaching all day Friday and Saturday. Saturday afternoon when it was slow, I went up to him and asked what he thought. He said he thought it to be true, but “at the end of the day, does anyone really know where they are going”? And I said with a confident Yes, “I know that I am going to Heaven”. I told him that God does not save you to just have you go about your life in doubt, wondering where you will spend eternity. That the assurance is not in us, but in what Jesus did for us on the cross. I encouraged him to read 1 John (he said he had a bible). I told him to seek the Lord and pray that God would reveal the truth to him personally. That if he called out to Jesus with a humble heart, He will not turn him away. Austin seemed sincere and thoughtful about what I had said, and I’m sure was affected by all the truth that was poured out those two days.”
You can edit them if you like, to make them shorter. 🙂

Jim Grega:

I am really thankfull for sfoi and all the work that bill, nick, and others put in to organize this event.I was really encouraged by the fellowship and came away very confident that God is doing some amazing work of revival in our midst, we just need to stay the course.
The Lord revealed some pridefull areas in my life that i didnt know existed, i was humbled!
I really didnt have any idea that there would be that many people and that they would be as cold and disinterested as they were. i had only about a dozen conversations, and none that really amounted to much, all of that said, we did have two people come under conviction and request prayer. Praise be to our God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

“to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of His name”… rom.1:5b

Jeremy Schmitz:
It was a joyous, edifying, and immensely powerful time of evangelism. What a worshipful time laboring with a large group of bold and loving believers! I was blessed not only working alongside of them, but being nourished by their preaching. I learned a lot, whether in little things such as techniques in handing out tracts or in interacting or responding to the crowd. Now that the event is over, I am inspired and motivated to keep looking for more opportunities to proclaim the gospel and seek the lost. Therefore, the effect of that event will be long-lasting, I trust.
I was thankful for every single one-on-one conversation, every tract received by others, every opportunity to preach to the crowd, and every chance to hold up a sign. The longest conversation I had was with an agnostic man named Brady (I think). He was surprised, impressed, and thankful for how much time I gave him. He thought I wouldn’t have spent much time with someone as skeptical as he.