Every day, millions of people around the world search the internet for God. Learn how Global Media Outreach and online missionaries are using technology to reach the world with the gospel.
Calvary Albuquerque is regularly host to special guest speakers. This series includes messages from many great Bible teachers including; Pancho Juarez, Mike Finizio, Don McClure, Bill Welch and others. These messages can be purchased as CDs from our online store, or by calling 1-800-922-1888.
Good evening! I'm glad you came tonight. You're in for something special. Somebody had reminded me of something, an old friend I was speaking out in Southern California this last weekend and she reminded me that this one girl I was privileged to lead to the Lord and I remember the night I led her to cry and she said, "What I remember Skip is that like a week later you took us out to the Huntington Beach Pier a group of friends and you paired us up, took us in pairs and you turned us loose on the Huntington Beach Pier to share the Gospel with people." And she said, "I was petrified, I thought I can't do this."
But the feeling at the end of every night when we would go out and witness the feeling of leading souls to Christ or planting a seed or the excitement once I got passed the initial fear of being able to share with someone and effect their eternity, it effects their eternal standing with God and she said it was the most exhilarating feeling ever.
And I would agree with that, there is just nothing like knowing that God used me for a purpose and when we first started this fellowship many, many, many, many years ago we got involved with missions right off the bat and getting people in missions and supporting indigenous missionaries in India. We we're working with KP and we still work with that group to this day and God has blessed many of those ministries. But it's always been a very important component of discipleship is that we take what Jesus said, the great commission very seriously, going to all the world and proclaim the Gospel.
Well I heard something and saw something a couple of months ago that just floured me and you're going to hear it tonight and see it tonight. I was at a conference and I saw something that my heart just leapt, I've never before seen a group that was involved in something that I had even in my mind thought about it, but what's the possibility of using computer technology not just for building up the body of Christ but for getting the Gospel around the world and impacting people's lives for Christ.
Not knowing that greater minds, much greater than my mind has already been working on this and what you are about to see tonight -- I mean to me it's revolutionary, when I saw this I thought, I want to do this. I really want to do this and I want our church to be able to see it and it is something that could truly revolutionize not only people around the world it can revolutionize us who get involved in it. So tonight I'm going to introduce you to our guest John Blanford.
He's going to speak a little bit then I'm going to interview him, I'm going to ask him a series of questions and you can ask him some questions too as you know this is an interactive evening. Expound or one's an idea is always interactive so as you're listening to John and you're thinking of a question you want to either e-mail in or you want to text it in. Some of you are watching by internet, others if you are listening to this on the radio many of you are in the auditorium.
I know that because I can actually see you here and if you brought a cellphone or a device and you want to communicate, please put it on mute, do not send and receive e-mails with anybody else tonight or text your friends or, "Here's a picture of somebody sitting next to me." We invite you to use your technology to interact with us. So it's going to be up on the screen but if you want to text, you can text questions to (368) 674, keyword, "expoundABQ" once again, (368) 674, keyword, "expoundABQ" or you can e-mail questions to email@example.com, Once again, firstname.lastname@example.org.
So we're going to entertain those questions after the first segment I want John to just show you what's going on around the world and how we can get involved and then I have some questions I want to ask him to explain this about our possible involvement. So without any further to do, would you please welcome someone who has become a friend of mine now John Blanford.
John Blanford Thanks Skip. Okay is this one working? Okay, good. Well let me pray first.
Heavenly Father in Jesus name, I just come to you and ask that your Holy Spirit would fall in this place tonight and that as Skip said that has he first heard this, his spirit leapt Lord.
So that is my prayer for everyone here, everyone watching on the web and everyone listening on the radio Lord. That if this a work that you have prepared in advance for these folks to do Lord, that their spirit would leap as they hear what you're doing through the ministry that is GMO. And Lord if You wanted to focus on -- completely focus on other areas, I would pray that you would checks on their spirit and just say, you know what this is awesome and praise God but it's not for me Lord. So we give you this time, I just ask that you'd speak for me and be glorified tonight, in Jesus' name, Amen.
So GMO is -- you can go to the web now. We're a ministry we have 120 websites about 120 websites in 15 languages all over the world, purely evangelistic and discipleship in nature. What you're looking at right here on the screen is the aggregate count of what's going on those 120 websites today. And the little blue dots if you can see on the screen; those are people right now who are reading the Gospel or hearing it on one of our websites. When they turn to yellow, like someone in Florida and someone in Texas that means they've prayed to receive Christ live. Praise God.
Amen. Those numbers you're looking at are today's numbers. We update those numbers at midnight Pacific Time. So, so far today we've presented the Gospel over 110,000 times today. 17,186 folks today have indicated the decision for Christ. Amen. And 2471 of those folks have given us their e-mail address and in effect said, would you please tell me more about Jesus. So really as you consider what's going on in the rest of these presentation as I share; that's one question I want you to consider.
If you went home tonight, or tomorrow night and someone knocked on your door and said, would you tell me more about Jesus; would you open the door? Skip was sharing a story about how they used to go out to the pier and they were all -- probably all, most of them were scared to say the first word but how exhilarating it was at the end. Well this is a ministry that literally has people coming to you saying; please tell me more about Jesus.
So if that intrigued you please listen up. The vision of our ministry is rather big, the first time I heard it I thought it was extraordinarily big, supernaturally big and I guess it is; that we would do our part to give every person on the planet multiple opportunities to hear the good news of Jesus Christ by the year 2020, less than 10 years away.
And that we would see hundreds of millions of those come to a saving knowledge of Christ and that even more than that we would build them in their faith and connect them to fellowships and churches all over the globe, so that was a pretty big vision. Earlier this year our chairman, Walt Wilson, who founded the ministry in 2004 and Walt was an early executive at Apple Computer and it's really just neat to see how God has used him to start this ministry.
Earlier this year he was burdened by the thought that "What if that's my vision? What if that's GMO's vision? And what if God wants to move faster; are we ready to handle that? Can our systems handle it?" Well let's find out.
So with that he was also -- last year we saw a typical day we would see about 300,000 to 400,000 folks come to our websites and he was burdened with a -- prayer just said, Lord please bring us 1 million people in one day; that'd be heck of a crusade, right? A million Gospel presentations in one day, so with that I'm not going to tell you how it came about but I will tell that on March 23rd or March 24th of this year, we exceeded over 1 million presentations in visitors to our websites each day. Hallelujah.
With that in mind, check out this brief, less than two minute video, which kind of unpacks that day and the ministry that is GMO.
(Video playing 00:09:20- 00:11:09)
So, with that that the information that I haven't shared yet but which really fuels our ministry is that Google has been telling us for years that 2 million people every single day are "Looking for God on the internet" So that means they're going to Google or another search engine they're typing in God, heaven, hell, prayer something like that, right?
They don't know God. I would never think to Google God or Jesus but I know Him and I like to share story that everything I don't know I Google them, right? Hey, this isn't a plug for Google but about I'm now 47 years and climbing quickly and it was just six months ago that I Google how to hard boil an egg and I didn't know a 46-year-old man at that time didn't know how to hard boil an egg but I Google it within 10 seconds I found out the answer.
So, we've got millions of people all over the planet who are looking for God on the internet. They don't know Him. They're Google on Him. So, that's how we're getting the folk story sites and this was how the used the ministry last year. We presented the Gospel almost 120 million times. We saw 15 and over 15 and a half million people indicated decision last year. Two million four hundred and sixty eight thousand votes gave us their e-mail address and let me expound on that real quickly here. That e-mail address that's where you can come in.
So, you can act as what we call an online missionary so you can help disciple these people. You can tell them more about Jesus if you will from your living room, from your office, with a cup of coffee and your laptop. So, it's those 2.4 million people that we need to respond to and that number grows every year. So, we need more online missionaries and that's one of the calls to action tonight.
So, that's how the Lord used the ministry last year and as you consider what it might look like, would I be interested in being an online missionary? I want you to -- I need the stress this absolutely it is so simply to do.
Technologically, if you can send and receive e-mail you can do this ministry and my mom can send and receive e-mail and I promise you there's not one person in here, I'd be shocked if maybe there's one that is more petrified of a computer than my mother. But, I assure that I still get two, three jokes a day that she forwards via e-mail. So, I know she can do this ministry. So, technologically don't need to be a tech wiz to do this ministry.
Theologically, you do not need to be Bible college grad. You just need to love the Lord. Remember this isn't an e-mail situation. This isn't a chat. This isn't even at coffee shop or someone home no I can't fear my faith Him. They might ask a question that too tough for me. If they ask you a question that's too tough for you on e-mail you have time to dig in the word we have online resources that what we part with the couple of websites that just have phenomenal scriptural answers to questions that people ask all the time. You can pray about it, you can ask someone so you have the time to respond to them via e-mail and you'll see yourself growing in your faith as you serve here.
So, technologically, it's simple. Theologically, it's simple and time you can adapt this to your schedule. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes a day to be an online missionary and you can even shorten that if you want. You can say, you know what, Ali went e-mails two, three days a week or you can say I'd like to e-mail everyday and right now we're understaffed, like I said I'd like two or three e-mails a day. But, you can back that down the two, three e-mails a week or one a day. So, time wise it's also simple. So not only is it simple but it's incredibly effective.
We took a survey. We had a couple of donors put together at the survey, they call themselves resident skeptics. They said what it is yeses me and all these people are clicking yes I prayed to receive prayers and they're getting follow-up with by our folks but what is it really mean.
So, they put together six spiritual questions survey. They send it out to about 80,000 of our new believers who had come to faith in Christ more than six months ago and less than 18 months ago. So, kind of that window where they could have walked away from whatever decision they had. So, with that survey they gathered over 8000 responses back and 7869 responses back sorry about that and these were people who said yes six to 18 months earlier.
The questions we ask I'm going to share for with you we said the first question was probably the most important how sure are you that you know Christ is your persona savior. Eighty -eight percent of these folks said we're very certain, 9% say we're somewhat certain. Let me said how often you read your Bible? Forty percent said they're in the word daily, 33% one to two times a week. So, 75% of these folks about are getting in the word in a couple of time a week.
How often are you attending church or meeting with the small group oppressions? Sixty-two percent said weekly and another 14% do again about 75% of the folks are one to two times a month they're in fellowship. How often have you shared your faith with others? This is a number that it would be my prayer that the church in America would be ought to answer with this resounding of a yes, 53% of these new believers three times or more in the last six months. Another 37% sire their faith once or twice. So 90% of them have shared their faith in the last six months and I would reckon you that happen in all of the churches all over America it would change this country, we'd be living in revival.
So it's effective new believers are walking with Jesus and I heard the store owner shared this with another group philanthropic type folks and he said, "Look, we know that when we take surveys, spiritual surveys specifically people get inflated opinions of themselves. They want to be seen as more spiritual than they are, right? He said, "But cut this number down by two or even by three and multiply it by 15.5 million decisions and it's staggering how effective the ministry is." The online missionaries also are growing in their faith. The people just like you who could serve as an online missionary, we also surveyed them.
We do a lot on the back end to make sure we're kind of advancing down on the straight narrow and to a man they said, more confidence in sharing their faith, strengthening their personal walk with the Lord, more global minded. Just really grown in their faith and tons of anecdotes to about how online missionaries are grown in their faith as well as the folks who are coming to faith in Christ over the internet. And I was so excited when Skip said, "You know you can have folks texting questions so here's my solicitation to you, I would love" -- I think as I share this that everyone would want to do this.
It's simple, it's effective so why wouldn't you as Bible believe in Christian want to do this, so let me know why you wouldn't, text me and not only questions but text me in fierce if you would. You tell me it's simple but I can't believe it's simple, I hate computers. Whatever your fear is, I would love to get some just kind of knowledge just to know what might keep you away from doing this. I'm sure a lot of you are going to do this but probably not everyone.
So we have over 7,000. It's really important for us to do that because we have over 7,000 online missionaries now. We recon and we need 33,000 by next year, so we've got a lot of work to do as far as recruiting online missionaries which is one of the reasons we're so grateful for Skip giving us his platform this evening. Now it's simple and it's effective and I don't know that anyone can do it but I want you to watch this video.
(Video Playing 00:19:18 - 00:20:03)
What is going on around the world now is not almost everyone, but the majority of people on the planet have cellphones, so they have access to the internet. We get over a half, a large percentage of our hits come over mobile phones right now. We know that in South Africa over 80% of the people live on less than $2 a day and over 80% of the people have cellphones. The service is so inexpensive over their major companies, actually pay that they would get to use cellphones.
And I had six pictures of people from Africa, people in Afghanistan, people in Pakistan, with cellphones. There's this picture I have of a Muslim guy riding a horse and he's talking on his cellphone. And I had a check with what Albuquerque's laws are and I know you guys can't drive in a car and talk in the cellphone but apparently you can ride on a horse and talk on the cellphone. So it's just amazing what's going on all over the planet now but even more exciting than that is there's this plan in place right now called O3b, which stands for, “Other Three Billion.”
Right now, there are three billion people on the planet that do not have access to the internet. By the year 2015 the super powers of the world and the major tech companies Google, Cisco, Intel have all got in together and they're spending accumulative $1.5 trillion to see to it that by the year 2015 everyone will have access to the internet. The world is going to be just a global hot spot. So if everyone has access to the internet, everyone is going to have access to the Gospel.
Matthew 24:14 when the disciples are asking Jesus, “What are some of the signs of the ends times?” Right and Zhe's talking about earthquakes and wars and rumors of wars and did you read your paper? But in Verse 14 he says, “In this Gospel of the King of God will be preached to all the Nations and then the end will come.” And I was taught ones that that Greek for the word then means suddenly than the end will come.
So we live in amazingly and fascinating times. And our Chairman Walt Wilson loves to share and then you know us guys in Silicone Valley and I mentioned he was a early executive at Apple computer, right. He's been in Silicone Valley for 40 years. And he says, “Those guys in Silicone Valley, we didn't invent it, we didn't create them. We just discovered them a few decades ago.” So my question to you is why you think Christ created bits. Because Colossians 1:16 tells very clearly that everything, visible and invisible. Those zero's and ones that are flying around in the air those bits that allow computers in the internet to work, Christ created everything visible and invisible, to be used by him and for him.
We believe with every five of our being that Christ created bits to get the Gospel to the ends of the earth. And we are seeing close country. Every country is represented by decisions, throughout the GMO. We've reached every country right now and it's just amazing. So I'll leave you with one story of how this can replicate itself and how you invite people as this an online missionary.
There's this girl Lada in Cambodia. She found one of our websites and she said, she read and dedicated her life to Christ, but the comment she left was she said, “I feel really depressed and very far from God. And I don't think I can get God back in my life.” And her e-mail ended up in this girl Aggiee Hertel's inbox from Costa Mesa. And so she responds to this girl Lada who is depressed and far from God and then she leads her on this 30-day Bible study which is available for every online missionary to lead people through if you want too. And she leads Lada in Cambodia through this 30-day Bible study.
And Lada catches the fire of the Lord. Now Lada is constricted to a wheelchair but she's on fire for God and she works in an orphanage. And so Lada takes 120 kids in Cambodia and 95% Buddhist about 1% Christian, she takes one out at a retreat just a regular retreat at the end of retreat she shares a Gospel with him. 60 kids in Cambodia prayed to receive Christ that day.
This from a woman who was depressed and far from God but stumbled across one of our websites, right so then she goes back to Aggie and she says, “Aggie you got to teach me about baptisms, I want to Baptist this kids.” And so Aggie teaches her about baptism, she probably has to ask people how do I teach her about baptism, the point is she did it. And then Lada Baptist 65 kids in Cambodia and she tell Aggie, “Today, I've Baptist 65 kids in Cambodia,” and Aggie said, “I thought you said it was 60?” And Lada said, “Yeah, but since the retreat I've add five for to Christ.”
So praise God. So Father, thank you so much for what you are doing and again I've just pray again it just keeps going to come up and we're going to chat some more about this that if spirits are leaping here that I give the call of the action you would share with them exactly what you would have them do it Jesus' name.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Did you hear that static and John I wanted to just cover that with you. Two million people a day are looking for God on the internet and then you told me that statistic and I was already flabbergasted with that and then you told me what we think that it's more than that.
John Blanford: Yeah, thanks for bringing that up Skip. That's what Google was telling us for years and I believe you know that's what they thought. Well when we reached a million people with one day, in one day for the Gospel and that took some very special donors on our behalf so we could buy more internet ads which how it went down. And the second day we reached a million, the guy said as their chairman or CEO, he said you know, “What's keeping us from reaching a million and a half people today, is it just money?” And we said well you know our service our running like 900% capacity and --but the bottom-line is he has probably money.
So the guy said I don't care what it cost, I'll write the check you reached a million and a half today if you can by 11:00 P.M. that night praised God we've reached a million and a half people. On Pentecost Sunday, which was a couple of months after that that went down March 24th of Pentecost Sunday, we've reached over 1.9 million people with the Gospel. So we believe that number is definitely and it's obviously they're not all finding our site.
So it's millions and millions and millions of people everyday are looking for God that hungers out there.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: John, the little map that we saw just a moment ago of what's happening today and this life feed?
John Blanford: Yeah?
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Is that something that anybody can see?
John Blanford: Sure.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: So we could go on and watch this happening before us? As well take part in.
John Blanford: Right. I encourage you not to do at work because you get really into it you just kind of stare at it. But yes, the website is called greatcommission2020.com. So greatcommission2020.com just watch what the Lord is doing.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay and again while I'm asking John questions, you may have a question or a fear or an issue about this please text it in or it e-mail it in and John how did GMO get started?
John Blanford: I mentioned the Chairman. He doesn't like me to share. He's such a humble leader and such a great man of God but back in 1993, he is one of the higher ops in Silicon Valley. He's meeting with 12 guys over at MIT on east coast. And they are talking about the worldwide web which is about to launch and they're talking about how to maximize revenues and how to monetize I should say, the worldwide web and Walt says he's peppered with questions by God. How we'll be able to use this in disciple the nations? How will we be able to use this for advance the Gospel?
So much that when he gets home at night he shares with his wife we got to quit our job I got to start a ministry. But God impressed on him, "Now is not the time." But in 2003 God started moving in on him again now is that the time. God started speaking to Steve Douglas who is the president of Campus Crusade. You need to use the internet more effectively and Steve and Walt knew each other and I want you to challenge Walt Wilson to do it. So he did and the ministry was an easy yes for Walt because God was already telling him to do it. So that's the genesis of the ministry.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Here's a question that I have, what if--you're talking about ministering the people in Cambodia. In other countries, I don't speak the language of Cambodia, I speak only English and I have trouble sometimes with that language. How on earth can we communicate to people across the language barrier?
John Blanford: Well right now we have websites in 15 languages as I mentioned. But we also have online missionaries on each of those languages. So we don't do any of the translate it's just not that effective. You know the Google translating things, it still comes off as non-conversational. So we look for online missionaries in each language so when you fail at the first step to becoming an online missionaries to fill out an application online and when you do that you'll be asked what languages do you speak fluently. Now the majority of our hits do come in English. I only speak English but so I only get English speaking responses.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay, and you've mentioned to me something interesting a couple of weeks ago that you were looking for more Spanish-speaking people. Is that correct?
John Blanford: Yes, we'd desperately need Spanish-speaking online missionaries. We could put hundreds to work tomorrow. We sometimes have to kind of be less aggressive with our advertising because some of Latin America is so fertile.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: How many of you here speak Spanish? Can I see you show your hands? Wow! That's a lot of you. That's great. We could you I think. We have a question that was texted in and we're going to throw this up on the screen it says how do you get the people to come to the GMO website? That's a good question because you said millions of people a day are looking for God on the internet. How would they know to come to this website? That's sort of a hook right? How do they find you?
John Blanford: So think of it typical Google search, you type in Jesus in this case and we'll take ads, we'll take internet ads and I'm not going to go too deep into our strategies. We like to keep some things to ourselves. But the more ads we take the more people we get to our sites. And not only are we reaching out the people's specifically looking for God or Jesus but also we're trying to hit and meet the points of Christ we know Jesus is basically the answer to everything right? So we have a website called godandmarriage.com and godanddivorce.com and godlovesmarines.com and so we were -- and so the numbers of websites are growing and growing and growing.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And so our people do you find the people have you surveyed this the writing, how can I find meaning in life or I want to know who God is. Is there a God in heaven, is that the kind of question people are kind of Googling and searching?
John Blanford: Absolutely.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And then when they do that, your site pops-up and they're direct to do it.
John Blanford: Yeah.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Now, I'm hearing all about a lot of English-speakers and you're looking for Spanish-speakers, can I infer then that most of the hits that you get are from Americans?
John Blanford: No actually and that's a great question Skip. Most countries have some, I've been told that in China, I forget by what year but it's very soon and maybe it would be now. more people speak English than in America. And it's -- I understand it's a lot because of the internet. It's just the keyboard is so English friendly. But so you'll get folks from all over the planet you will minister people from all over the planet, China, India, or two of our biggest -- where we get the most hits from America is like third or fourth traditionally.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Are you looking for a certain demographic a person or can anybody do this if they have a real heart for it? Who would be turned away from this? And who is it that you're looking for?
John Blanford: The only people that will be turned away are folks that are under 18 when you speak of demographics. You need to be 18 years old and invariably some will come up to me at the presentation like this and say, you know before they hear that they'll bring their 14-year-old and say, "You'll make the best online missionary." and I'll be like, "I'm sure he would but you know what, he needs to be 18 but this would be a great thing for the two of you to do together how you guys could grow to gather spiritually and pray for these people together and answer together." So that's the only demographic that's cut off to further answer your question as I referenced my mom and I've been sharing that for years now. I just got permission to share it like a week ago. But all of that to say, some of the semi-retired and retired folks are our best online missionaries. So many people think of the 20 and 30-year-olds because they're so wired, right? They're always looking at their phones. And they're great online missionaries but really the semi-retired and the retired folks time, wisdom is revitalized and so many of their ministries.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: You and I have something in common I also look on Google to find out how to hard boil an egg just a couple of weeks ago. I could have asked my wife but I thought I just Google it then I'll know. And just I know how to do this, no problem.
Another question came up from and I'm going to throw it up on the screen and it's a really good question. This is asking how do you ensure that the discipleship is biblically sound are the conversations monitor. So let's say somebody volunteers we approve them, they've been trained they go to do it but how do we know that there's not going to be an agenda or somebody is going to share something that's not necessarily biblically correct or even false, how do you guard against that?
John Blanford: Now the short answer and the unfortunate answer is that you can't 100% guard against that right but we can do the best we can. You can't guard against someone with a coffee shop from spilling out her heresy when they're sharing their faith? But we can do a lot more than just look at them at a coffee shop. The first step again is you fill out an application we, we ask a few questions about your testimony about how Christ transformed your life, any ministry experience you have which you have been reading the word lately with God speaking to you so we -- and we ask for spiritual reference or two on that application we will follow up that spiritual reference.
And so that does a pretty good job at weeding out some folks that probably aren't ready to be on my missionary jet. Then separately you'll go through the training, the online trainings again very simple, 50 minutes of videos broken down into like nine different videos of five minutes at top so you can watch them in one fell swoop or you can break it up as you schedule it out. you go through the training and then you'll start receiving e-mails. For those first 28 days you'll receive an e-mail a day and each one of your responses will be overseen by one of our experienced community leaders. They'll actually look at your response and make sure that you're doing things right and again helping with answering that question a gentleman or lady just asked. And so that's the process and then once you're out of the community-- out of the training community if you will then you'll be placed in a Calvary of Albuquerque community I hope you'll have tens and twenties and a ton of communities here. Every group of 25 will have a community leader. So that's the kind of -- if you ever have a question as an online missionary you can ask your community leader via e-mail they'll be able to answer it, if not they can get to us.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And John you're not only a part of this organization you actually do this online yourself. And have you had any experiences of leading people to Christ?
John Blandford: Yes, I share one that didn't ultimately lead --I don't know I mean as he was planning that's another thing with this. It's like the only one that if you've ever been on a short-term missionary trip or even a long-term missionary trip, oftentimes you don't know the fruit of the labor. You go there and you sow seeds and you the Lord for the growth. We'll see a lot of that with on my missionaries but this one guy he mailed from the U.K. and he said, he wasn't Christian and he wanted to investigate more. But he was really combative and he said you know what?
I'm a homosexual and I have no place in my life for a religion that condemns me. And he said a couple -- and I believed in dinosaurs and something else, I forget there was another one but and the homosexual issue is such a key issue and I've remember asking Lord how am I going to answer this guy and I got on my knees and I just said, “God, how am I going to answer this guy?” And I had this picture of -- not even the answer that would come later -- but this picture of, what if congregates all over the country reach out all over the U.S. were challenged with questions like this.
And got on their knees and said, “God, how do you want me to administer to this guy, he's hurting.” It would transform this country if we could lovingly respond to the homosexual community at large. Would a better in face Christianity would have today, so that was that example that really hit me.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: I just want to go back over a couple of things because there's -- even a short time there's a lot of information that I want to reinforce. There's this thing you call O3b, Other Three Billion and this is something that companies know about already and they're placed to do something about it and the idea is, is this kind of a global thrust to get other people who don't have technology to get them online, is that the purpose?
John Blandford: That's exactly it.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And first of all why do people want everybody online?
John Blandford: It depends how cynical you are to answer that question. The business, the lessen I go answer would just be more people to market too and what the governments have in mind people that are much smarter than I would be out to answer that question better maybe much more cynical than I maybe both of those go together. But all that to say that, I believe the program is launching next year, they're going to launch low level satellites. There are 14, what they call dark areas right now on the planet. They're going to launch low level satellites that by the year 2015 and it looks like maybe by 2013 the world would be covered.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: With the ability to get online?
John Blandford: Right.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay, but you should be a picture like, I don't know was it African or even a South American tribes person in the bush all painted up with this tribal regally on and he's on a cell phone. He's in the middle of nowhere and I'm thinking first of all how many bars does he have? Like, what kind of service do you have? Because I lose calls, I was in the sake going up and down the street but you're not suppose -- in different parts of town I've lost service and --
John Blandford: It's all Bluetooth, it's no waste.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: So, number one, does he get service and how does he have a cell phone and these things are expensive how can somebody who lives in a hut have a cell phone?
John Blandford: Right, from what I understand in Africa it costs less than $1 a month for cell phone service but to make a call, yeah, it sounds good now.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: I'm getting me a hut.
John Blandford: No, it sounds good now but for the less patient fellows and girls in this room, you won't like it too much because every time that I had a native African in a hut, she looked like she's probably 20 with the cell phone. It cost less than a $1 a month but every time she wants to make a call or receive a call she has to listen to an ad or watch an ad. So, the companies are paying to do that and --
Pastor Skip Heitzig: So, they pay a $1 a month and the trade-off is when they want to use the phone they have to watch an ad. What you're saying, tell us how GMO is going to capitalize on that. Are you going to be putting ads on phones?
John Blandford: This is one of the areas we don't like to talk too much about but I'll share it with you, we get a lot of traffic in Africa, if you know what I'm saying.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: You want to capitalize on the technology available.
John Blandford: Absolutely and rather than -- I don't know what the other ads would be like but why not give them the good new of Christ before they pick up the phone.
Praise God and the repugnant question is, if we're not there, who will be? There are others there every time in the U.S. that I Google Jesus, Jesus Christ or God, every time I've Google that one of those three the Mormon Church is always number one on the ads. They have more money than our ministry. They're all centralized out of Utah, of course they have more money than the Christian Church but we're fragment. They're always number one and the Mormons frankly have taken a lot of our stuff and they say flattery is the sincerest form of -- you know what I'm trying say. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery but we wished they didn't do that obviously. If we're not there who will be?
Pastor Skip Heitzig: We have a question, I'm so glad somebody will ask this question, I have it right there on you screen. It says, “Iran jams in the internet and confiscates the satellite dish. It's used for internet access, how do people access GMO or Christian websites, people looking for God in the internet, how will they do it in Iran?” We've heard about this lately on the news, did you ever met sort of cease control of communication devices and mass communication for their own agenda. What do you do with that?
John Blandford: Amen. I don't specifically know about Iran I know we get a ton of traffic from Iran and all over the Middle East and I don't know how and I remember reading about this like a month ago, it really came out but the example I shared with you from Egypt earlier this year. We saw tremendous traffic when they have the upheaval just like six times the traffic we had year to date last year in Egypt in the first couple of months. On one day, Egypt -- they did -- they unplug the internet. The government unplugged the internet and the cell phones and so our traffic was -- it can be cut-off. Now, they put it right back up the service the next day, praise God, but the bottom line is, I think that's probably why walls have been burdened. We need to move faster the urgency has been cranked up because we've seen how easy it is to unplug these things.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: The door is open but the door going to close, you're saying at any times. So, while it's open let's go through it.
John Blandford: And exactly and I will say we're right now huge, huge, huge percentage of our traffic comes from the internet and cell phones where media company we were exploring everything. Like wall likes to share, if I have to put the gospel in the side of a buffalo in the middle, I'll do that.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: There's probably places where that would work meant to them. Walk me through this, let's say I'll do this, I'm on the internet and I go to my website and I got these e-mails from people and somebody ask me a question of -- philosophical question or scientific question that can't answer. At that point, what do I do? Type in, “Sorry, I can't help you” or what do you do? How do you walk people through difficult situations like that?
John Blandford: When I first heard about this texting thing, this Q and A at the end of your Wednesday nights service I thought it was just fantastic for just to dig another scripture but another great question and I can't share everything in 30 minutes so there's questions are, I think led by the Lord and another -- I don't want to over simplify this I keep saying that but I keep using the word simple, so maybe I do want to over simplify but you can reassign as an online missionary, you can reassign a question for whatever reason you want. If you're too busy one day, there's a little icon and you'll see all of this if you come over the hub. I won't pack it all for you and there's a little icon where you just click reassign and if you're too busy one day if the guy ask a question that's too tough, a philosophical question and we have specialty groups when it comes to different theological questions.
We have a specialty group that answers only really difficult theological questions. So, if you can say theological question or if it's about abortion or if it's about suicide you just think, you know what, this is over my head. We have groups that that would be reassigned to marital problems who are specialist in that.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: We have another question that has been texted in, boy you guys have some great questions and it says, “How does an OM disciple,” okay, an OM is online missionary for those that may not get that, called now OM, “How does an OM, an OM, an online missionary disciple new believers are there discipleship tools or programs available?” This is really good because not everybody is questioning about the faith. They have said, “I've already prayed to receive Christ.” And we have the opportunity to disciple them. So, are there tools or do we just have to know everything?
John Blandford: Yeah, there're tools. One I looted to during the talk, it was the 30-day Bible study and that if you can invite that person to attend not to attend online and if they say, “Yeah, I'd like to go through the 30-day Study with you”. Everything single day they'll get one lesson. So, be there with little devotional time and I'll get them in a habit of building a quiet time that 30-day devotionals a great tool. We have another tool, we'd partnered with the website called God Questions Data Work, if someone asked you a difficult question, click on the icon. You go to their website God Questions Data Work right now I think they have over 280,000 questions scripturally answered. If you typed in sin you'll get 80 questions or why does God allow evil you'll get 50 hits and you just pick the question that most aligns with what they're asking. The answer is yes. We have a ton of resources available for all the online missionaries.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And how many countries again are you reaching out too? How many countries does this --
John Blandford: Every country on the planet.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Every country on the planet to anybody who has accent. What about languages?
John Blandford: Languages, 15 languages, I frankly don't know them wrote but the 15 top languages I would say.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Are you planning on developing more languages?
John Blandford: Yes, our short-term goal is I believe there are 43 Google languages. We want to get there in the very near term and -- but yes. A few months ago we were at 11 or 13 languages. Last year, 11 and a few months ago 13, now we're on 15, growing on that and growing.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And what countries would you serve the top countries that you receive response from?
John Blandford: Top countries are China, India, the U.S. is usually about third or fourth, Indonesia, largest Muslim country in the planet and that's usually about the fourth most hit, tremendous all over the Middle East, tremendous all over Africa, it's just its --
Pastor Skip Heitzig: This is like Star Trek missionary Evangelist to go where no man has gone before. We loved the whole idea of sending people out on the mission field and this doesn't take the place of that obviously. In fact, what we hoped to do is used the ones that we have in different countries who have computer access to be a part of this as well. But the concept of being able to reach-out to people who are already inquiring, they've sort of shown themselves already. If you look at a crowd of a hundred people, you don't know who has questions about God but when they come on the internet and they've already Google to find out and hit a website, well now they have surfaced. It's like it makes it so much easier to get the word spread.
John Blandford: What I like to say is, it's not so much that we are even evangelizing but we're casting the net as I shared that with Skip earlier we're casting the net and all the hard work that all of these on the ground missionaries have been doing for years, the seeds they've sowing and now we're casting the net or the internet and we're getting this huge hull of fish. And I'm here because the net's broken. We need help discipling this people. When I say the net, the internet's broken because the hull is so great we need more people to complete the task.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay, John we have one more question that has come in and it's another OM question, so we'll throw that up on the screen. “How far can the OM,” or online missionary you know what that is by now, the OM, “How far can the OM take the discipleship process?” You're going to have some people they're just going to do the minimum and then there're some people who will get so animated and so excited, they want to share like a fountain everything that the Lord has poured into them and how to grow in relationships and grow and leading others to Christ et cetera. How far can we take the process?
John Blandford: Yeah, it's really up to you, it's -- we have people that have -- now we're going there, down the road but we're not there yet where we'll have a kind of connecting these people with boots on the ground and their indigenous region but we've had many, many online missionaries so we'll find a church in their area and connect them to that church where missionary that they may know some fascinating anecdotes I could share with you but really for you the online missionary to -- we have the tools and the tools are on the internet and pray for these people. It is such a -- the first 12 people I have responded to did not respond back to me.
They said they prayed to received Christ, I answered their question or maybe they didn't have a question and I just tried to encourage them. They didn't respond that back to me and I said, “Lord, what's up? Is this ministry,” this is before I even started working for him I said, “Is this worth it?” And God just laid to my heart, “How much are you praying for these people?” and I said, “Honestly, the answers not much.” I get the name. I get the person. I find their question. I just asked God, how do you want me to administer this person? And now the percentage is really high is -- the folks who I should get back to me.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Hey John, here's the last question I'm going to ask you.
John Blandford: And I have one more thing I'd like to share.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay, great. We know that this is already impacting people around the world. Its changing lives for eternity but tell us what this does for the person doing it. What is the effect of getting him involved in this for the person who decides to become an online missionary?
John Blandford: The -- survey says their faith's going to grow and you're definitely going to thing more globally. You're going to have a more of a vision of the whole world and you're going to draw closer to Christ. You're going to encourage to share your faith more at the coffee shop or at work or at school because you're going to find out that there really aren't that many questions that are going to -- I think the most, the biggest reason I, would you agree Skip that most people don't show their faith because their scared they'll ask you --
Pastor Skip Heitzig: I would say so, yes.
John Blandford: -- they'll ask the question and they'll find -- there really aren't that many questions that haven't been knocked on their keister, if they do I don't know, I'll get back to you on that or whatever and you'll see resources that are out there so you're going to grow on the word and it -- one pastor who's a real champion of this says, “We can teach the Bible, verse by verse and chapter by chapter, that's great, but if we don't have an outlet to use all that knowledge.” Knowledge percept, but we need to exercise that faith.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: In fact, you've remember it if you teach it to somebody else.
John Blandford: Amen.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: So, you will be going to share something else and then I'm going to share something else.
John Blandford: Okay and this is probably isn't going to work. It's a new little toy we have and I really wanted to use it because we don't know what it's -- how it's going to work, it's the first time we tried it. You don't mention the odds that we've taken and so the two things we really besides prayer and new innovation and new -- there's a lot we need but the two biggest things they are online missionaries and money. We have this new little texting for donations. You could reach a 100 people with the gospel for $10 if you text in the number I'm about to give you or you text in GMO to the number I'm about to give you. You will reach a 100 people with the gospel. You're phone bill will be charged $10 and that it's a one time deal on that. Say we just want to see if -- because we have a lot radio stations I want to work with this and give us free advertising because they just think it's amazing what God is doing and so to, if you text GMO and again that 10 bucks will go on your phone bill but -- and that's it, that's the end of the story.
Actually the real end of the story is a 100 people will hear the good new of Jesus Christ. If you text GMO to the number 514-81 then you'll reach a hundred people with the --
Pastor Skip Heitzig: So, GMO, no space just GMO?
John Blandford: Right.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: GMO 51481 just text that.
John Blanford: text GMO to that number.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: And then how will we do that? How will they reach a 100 people?
John Blandford: It cost us 10 cents every time someone clicks of one of our ads across the board. If, you kick in $10, $10 time 10 cents is a 100 presentations of the God's will.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: That's great, okay great, good to know that, we will going to do that. Here's what I want to kind of close with John, when I first started my faith in Christ, I did with that one girl said that I did with a group of people and going out street witnessing. Somebody did with me and they put me on the street, I was week old in Christ, I knew nothing and they said, “Go share the gospel”, I said, “Okay and what is that exactly?” and they kind of said like “Here's sort of the main points and follow me and watch me a little bit and then I'm going turn you loose tonight.” I was so scared to your point. I was petrified, first of all I've never just come out and talk to somebody about the Lord. Second, I was afraid they would ask me a question I didn't understand.
Somebody asked me a question I didn't understand, I remember the night, I remember the question, it was about evolution. And I remember saying to them, “If you'll meet me in a week at the same spot at the same time I'll have the answer for you.” And I went home and I researched it and then next week I was looking for the person to tell that answer to, well he didn't show up but I was sharing the gospel with other people and they asked me question I didn't understand and I had to say the same thing, well long and short, it made me grow because I was curious to find out what these answers are and to be ready with the answers so, my faith grew exponentially as I learned to dispense the truth and to search it out.
You've actually made it so much easier for us and we appreciate you and I appreciate you being here.
John Blandford: Oh, thanks so much Skip.
Pastor Skip Heitzig: Okay, here's the deal I am passionate about the idea of releasing people to share the gospel. It's up to us tools have been given to us serving our hands. We text people everyday, we e-mail people everyday, why not allow the Lord to use some of us to share the gospel with people around the world. Some of you have been on mission trips and I commend you for that, others if you have paid good money to send people on mission trips and I thank you for that, we need senders as well as goers.
But here's way if you'll never be able to travel abroad where you can reach people who live abroad in their hearts using the technology that God has already given us and I think we live in a wonderful time and I'm all for using the technology that's available to make the name of Jesus more famous so, it's just my encouragement to all of us as a church to get involved with this. This is the kick-off night for this we're going to give more announcements obviously on Sunday mornings to come and Wednesday nights to come but get in on the ground level of this, so I think you'd be happy that you did.
Let's pray, Father thank you for opportunity that was not available to Paul or Peter, John or James or even a thousand years ago where Guttenberg landed on the printing press and the old style of media came in the view. Lord, now it's much easier. Lord, I pray that you put a fire in our hearts to make Jesus name more well known and to make our faith more dynamic in spreading his name around. We ask it in Jesus name. Amen.