Today our guest blogger is Vince Antonucci, author of “Guerrilla Lovers: How to Change the World with Revolutionary Compassion” and a great example of someone who is willing to do things that aren’t being done, to reach those who aren’t being reached. Vince is currently starting a church on the Vegas Strip, but I asked him to tell us a story from his book of when he started a church service in a bar. Here’s Vince:
When we started the service in the bar, one of our people, Samantha, couldn’t help but notice the pregnant bartender. It turns out that she was an ex-stripper. Apparently, there’s not much call for pregnant strippers, so she had to find a new job, which is why she started bartending at this pub. But feeling like a guerrilla lover, not only couldn’t Samantha help but notice her, she also couldn’t help but start talking to her each week, and she couldn’t help but begin praying about how she could ambush this lady with God’s love. The answer God gave her was… a party.
She began sharing her idea with some of the other Forefront women and everyone quickly jumped on board. They had to act fast, because the bartender was only a few weeks away from her due date. So Samantha and a few other ladies from our church went shopping and bought a boat load of baby-shower presents. Samantha called the bar manager and asked her to call the pregnant bartender in an hour early pretending it was really busy and they “needed extra help.” The manager complied and the bartender came rushing in … to a nearly empty bar, except for five women and a table full of presents and food, and a huge, “Surprise!!!”
She stopped in her tracks and just stared, not quite able to comprehend what was happening. When she finally got it she was even more stunned. She couldn’t understand why people she didn’t know would throw her a party. And not only were these people virtually strangers, they were Christians. Aren’t Christians against strippers, against bartenders, against women who get pregnant outside of marriage, and against parties? She was confused, and grateful, and pretty much speechless. Samantha says, “I think she had that feeling you get when you don’t know God or that He loves you, but then you discover for the first time that maybe he does. I think she felt that.”
And, by the way, that’s a great example of a guerrilla lover ambush, and I’m convinced that it’s the way we can have a real impact on people and the world.