BEXLEY, Ohio (SWBTS) – When Doctor of Philosophy student Beau Brewer woke up on the first day of Crossover, June 8, he was already exhausted. Having spent the previous day flying from Texas to Ohio, aiding in renting vehicles, picking up students from the airport, ensuring that students were settled into their hotel, participating in an evening prayer session, and getting to bed late, Brewer woke up that morning an hour earlier than usual because of the time difference. Although this was his fourth time participating in Crossover, the Southern Baptist Convention’s annual evangelism push prior to its annual meeting, the present circumstances made it difficult to get excited about the prospects of the day.  

Nevertheless, Brewer prayed in the Spirit that God would give him strength and provide an opportunity to share Christ with even just a few people. By the end of that day, Brewer’s prayer had been answered; he personally shared Christ with three people, and all three of them turned to the Lord.

The first such person, when Brewer encountered him, was installing security cameras on his house. Brewer began a conversation by inquiring about the cameras, learning that the neighborhood was rife with break-ins and thefts. Brewer eventually segued into a Gospel presentation, connecting the man’s desire to “see” to the story of Jesus opening the eyes of a blind man. While this conversation progressed, another team member shared the Gospel with the man’s son in their front yard. Both father and son received Christ at that time.

Two houses down, Brewer spoke with two young girls in the doorway of their house. While speaking to them, it began to rain, so Brewer, who had brought with him a packable jacket (that is, one that can be folded, packed and zipped into a specially designed pocket), started to unpack it. Realizing the opportunity to use it as an object lesson, Brewer showed them the jacket.

“You know, you might know who Jesus is,” Brewer said, “but it doesn’t do you any good until you unzip it; until you unlock who Jesus really is and unpack him.”

After unpacking the jacket, he held up the formless article of clothing, indicating that even though the jacket was unpacked, it still would not be of any help unless one were to put it on—that is, to be clothed by it. He then slipped it on.

“But you see, now the jacket has purpose, and it’s covering me, and it’s going to keep me safe and warm and dry,” Brewer explained. “That’s how a relationship with Christ is. It doesn’t solve all your problems, but it meets the essential needs.”

When Brewer invited the girls to respond, they both prayed to receive Christ right there on their doorstep. Although Brewer had begun the day with a rough start, heaven rejoiced as he had been used by the Spirit to lead three people from death to life.

Brewer was one of 51 people from Southwestern who participated in Crossover. These 51 were divided into “cluster” groups of roughly a dozen each. Brewer led one of these clusters. His group alone saw 20 people come to Christ; Southwestern, overall, saw 49.

Reflecting on these results, Brewer says, “Crossover is an incredible weeklong adventure into a community, into a context that you’re not familiar with, with people whom you may or may not see again this side of eternity. But you have an opportunity to impact eternity and to be used powerfully to change a community.”