Last weekend, I took a team of students from the dream interpretation class I just taught, and we went down to the 2nd Annual Chattanooga Tattoo Convention. I had a vendor booth there, and we offered free tattoo interpretations, dream interpretations, and encouraging words (which we call “spiritual readings” in street lingo).
First, let me just say it was awesome. We had the BEST time! The convention organizers did a great job putting together the event, and there were lots of people there. At our booth alone (not counting people we met outside the booth), we got to encourage 82 people with the love of God and His words of hope.
Here's what I learned from the tattoo convention:
1. People need love and hope.
Over and over again, people would come to us and their eyes would be dark and hopeless. So many people were discouraged and felt like they were drowning in sorrow.
However, the Lord gave us words of love and hope for each person. We met people who were dealing with all sorts of terrible circumstances:
- Suicidal ideation;
- Flashbacks and nightmares;
- A spouse's infidelity;
- Rejection from family members;
- Financial difficulty;
- and much, much more.
People's situations can be tough, but you know what? God is a God of hope! He's IS Love! Jesus IS Life!
As we encouraged each person, time after time we saw light come back into their eyes. We saw them light up on the inside.
Men and women both cried many tears, and the Holy Spirit lifted each one up and told them how much He loves them. Time after time, people told us that we had made their day – just because we shared God's words of love and hope with them.
People need hope, my friends. They need love. Jesus Christ has all the love and hope they need, and He IS the love and hope they need.
Who can you minister love and hope to today?
Related: Read “A Black Corvette, Receiving God's Love, and Loving Others” here for my story about love.
2. It is absolutely essential for us to be aware of God's manifest Presence around us at all times, and to know that He is stronger than everything else.
God is stronger than all distractions. No matter what was going on around us, the Holy Spirit made us aware only of Himself. We were able to hear Him clearly the whole time. The weekend was incredible, and we were full of Jesus the whole time. We were full of love and had no fear at all.
However, if we had looked at the distractions around us instead of looking at Jesus, I guarantee you that we would not have had the same result. What you focus on, you empower in your life. We looked at Jesus, He was empowered in our lives, and He moved.
3. The bolder we were in talking about Jesus, the more He moved.
On Saturday morning, God told me that the more I was willing to be bold and tell people that the love we were giving them was from Jesus, the more He would move.
That doesn't mean we shoved anything down anybody's throat. We were VERY CAREFUL not to be off-putting or obnoxious. (Remember point #1 – love!)
However, being bold does mean that as we talked to people about the special talents, creative gifts, and future successes we saw in them, we would let them know that the information God told us about them AND the talents in them were from God, and that He loves them.
For example, I often told people something like this: “Those gifts in you are from God. He made you, and He has an awesome plan for your life. You were born for a specific destiny, and God will help you fulfill it.”
The more I let people know that all this love and hope and encouragement were from Jesus, the more He touched them. It was incredible. People just cried and cried when we told them that they were unique and special, and that God made them! So many people truly have no idea how special they are.
Therefore, I'm making a note to myself for future reference: Love on people and tell them the love is from God. Don't set my lamp under a basket. 🙂
Related: Read about God's creativity and the one time I heard His audible voice here.
4. Walking in supernatural healing power is absolutely essential for every Christian.
Healing is a sign/power gift. That means it's meant not only to heal God's people, but also healing is meant to be a sign to non-Christians that God really is real and truly does love them.
When you pray for someone and God heals them, they suddenly come face-to-face with God's love and power. Everything about God becomes real to them at that point.
We had the privilege of praying for several people to be healed. Each time, they felt God moving upon their body physically (feelings of warmth, tingling, etc in the affected area). I don't know the results of our prayers other than that. However, that is often what people feel when they are being healed, and each person acknowledged that they could feel the Holy Spirit touching them.
I want more revelation of God's healing power. I want to walk in supernatural healing power more, so that people around me can be healed and come to know that Jesus loves them.
I learned more things also, but that's enough for one blog post. 🙂 We had an incredible weekend. I'm so excited about what God did, and I'm beyond thrilled that He allowed me to be a part of it when HE did it all. It was amazing to see Him loving on people, healing their hearts, and lifting them up.
What questions do you have about the tattoo convention? Leave a note in the comments below and I'll be happy to answer anything I can!
This post is linked up at A Little R&R.