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Surf’s Up!

You don’t have to be a professional surfer to have fun at the beach. Grab your friends or small group and have a day at the beach. If you have a friend that is good at surfing see if they will give you or a group of friends a lesson. Boogie boarding is a fun way to feel like you’re surfing and is a little less intimidating to learn. A beach day can be a great opportunity for an outreach. Have everyone in your small group invite their friends. Pack lots of yummy food and have a cookout or picnic. Have one of the small group members share their faith story of how they came to Christ. If you don’t have a beach close by see if someone who has a pool is willing to host a surf theme pool party at their house. We interviewed professional surfers Rick Takahashi in 2013 and Shannon and Shane McIntyre in 2006 and talked with them about their faith and how it helps them in their sport.

 

Surfing sensation Rick Takahashi was a part of the USA Surf Team and competed in the ISA World Masters Surfing Championship where he took sixth place in the world and helped the United States get a silver medal. He also has seven National Championship titles. Takahashi shares how he keeps it all in perspective.

 

“I used to take pictures of myself on the medal podium and once in a while I still do. Last year, I had a perfect season so I wanted to remember it visually. The difference is though that when I wasn’t saved I would celebrate these things. Now I give all glory to God when I achieve these accomplishments. It is not ours to gloat about. I have this opportunity to share the Gospel with people who aren’t saved. Instead of being like the football player who points to the name on the back of his jersey, my hands are up pointed to God. Before, I used to come out and talk about what I had done in the competition. But now that I know that I didn’t do anything, it keeps it all in perspective. I thank God for using me to have this platform to talk to kids and share the Gospel. The accomplishments are great and I am on track to break a record. People ask me what I am going to do after I break this record and I keep the perspective that I am just padding the record so the next person can break the record, because it will be broken. It still means something and I still set goals, but all of these goals can only be accomplished with God. It’s easy not to celebrate these things when it seems like it is God-given. So I am thankful for these things and I have to recognize that it is only because it’s his will.”

 

 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.” John 4:13-15

 

The McIntyres explain how they share their faith even when they can’t speak the same language.

Shayne says, “I think it’s definitely show in your presence and the vibe you give off to people. We do our best to be mellow. We’re always open to make friends and we like being polite. People see that we don’t have any agenda when we travel. They won’t see any Americans for months or years in certain places. A lot of time we share our faith when people share their faith with us. They want to tell you what they believe…You have to be brave. Shannon and I have known the Lord for a long time…We’ll pray for protection and other people will pray for us and that’s powerful. When you travel and have all that going in your favor…Still, there are those who love the Lord and were murdered for their faith. Shannon and I are pretty quick to spot those who don’t have good intentions. Plus, our kindness can put someone with bad intentions off balance a little bit.”

Shannon adds, “Faith in the U.S. is not politically correct. It’s like a negative thing, which is really sad. A lot of countries where we’ve been, faith is all they have.”

 

To read our entire interviews with Rick Takahashi and Shannon and Shane McIntyre, click here.

 

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