What God, Beer, Sex & Sin taught an apprentice


“Having a go” at new things is one of the most valuable experiences any MTS Apprentice can have. Apprentices need the chance to try, to succeed, to fail and to learn valuable ministry lessons from each. Wagga Wagga apprentice Tim Flint recently experienced this, as he assisted in planning and running an evangelistic event for blokes entitled God, Beer, Sex and Sin. He shares with us some of the lessons he learnt.

Picking a Venue

“We chose the venue, The Thirsty Crow, as it is a locally owned brewery that is still fairly new. They have won awards for their beers recently and there is a general interest in it around town. Generally speaking, blokes who hadn’t been there yet had been had been looking forward to the chance to go, and those who had already been to put away a pint or two of the local liquid had been looking for a good excuse to go back. “

“This made it incredibly easy to drum up support within our own congregation and also made it one of the easy invitations to make to non-Christian friends: “Hey Dazza, you wanna slip down to the Crow with me on Tuesday night? Our church have organised a brewery tour, some beer tasting and a bloke to come and talk on the topic ‘God, Beer, Sex and Sin-Pick the Odd One Out’. What do you reckon the answer is?”

Picking a Topic

“Not only did the topic fit the venue like a glove, but it also raised a genuine opportunity to address common misconceptions about God and church; namely that both are enormous killjoys. Ben Pfahlert’s talk was *stella in unpicking this (*notice the beer pun!). He presented a clear and concise gospel message that encouraged everybody to rethink God, who He really is and how we should respond to Him with great thanks for His amazing gift of salvation through Jesus (and His kind creation of beer and sex too)!”

The Results

“Everyone who went really enjoyed the whole shebang. Some of our guys are ruing the fact that they didn’t invite some of their mates along, but everyone is now looking forward to the next opportunity.”

Follow Up

“Part of our plan was plugging the upcoming Life course that we are running. The hope being that as people were challenged, we could immediately offer them the opportunity to explore Christianity further by attending the 6 week course with the friend that brought them.”

“We handed out a stack of invitations to the course, but left a large part of the responsibility for following up to the individuals who had brought the guests along. As of yet, I don’t know that we have anyone who has signed up to the course, although there is still a few weeks before it begins.”

There is a 5 week gap between the event and the Life course. “The 5 week gap was not a deliberate plan, it just happened that way. Because of it, I floated the idea of doing Just for Starters with the bloke I took along. This has worked really well. I’m now 5 weeks into sharing the gospel with him and I am really encouraged by the way that it is impacting on him.”

“This just reminds me of the need to drum into everybody the importance of being willing to be ‘Johnny on the spot’ when it comes to personal ministry. We need to make sure that people don’t have the attitude of waiting around for the next event or course before we share the gospel with our friends who have questions! “

Lessons Learned

“The success of the event reinforced for me the need to look carefully at the local context of the people and the place that you are trying to reach. And rather than trying to import a successful event idea from a different context and trying to force the fit, taking a step back, looking at what we already have and being creative in using strengths of the local context to reach out with a punchy, well-weighted look at the gospel.”

“There are probably two main things we could have done better:

1 – Get people to fill in a communication card on the night with contact details and delegate a person with the expressed responsibility to follow them up.

2 – Possibly leave less space between the night itself and the scheduled start of the Life course (5 weeks). “

“We need to train people to recognise the opportunities to share the gospel when they present themselves and skill them up to be willing to have a crack at one-to-one ministry, convinced of the truth that God uses our mere and feeble efforts to do great things to the glory of Christ! ”