By Brian Koonce
JEFFERSON CITY – Three of today’s top Christian recording artists are coming to central Missouri, bringing in the light of Jesus to meet the darkness of a sinful world.
Four area churches, Stonebridge Church, Eternity Church, Memorial Baptist and Concord Baptist, are joining together Sept. 19 for a different kind of Sunday evening worship service: The Light Meets The Dark tour.
The tour brings in Tenth Avenue North, Matt Maher, and Addison Road to all perform at a free concert at the Jefferson City Fairgrounds.
Tenth Avenue North, the headliners, currently have the No. 7 song on the Billboard Christian chart with “Healing Begins.” Maher, who has also written songs with mega-star Chris Tomlin, has the No. 8 song with “Hold Us Together.” Addison Road’s “Fight Another Day” is the No. 19 song.
In another example of churches joining hands and consciously making a Kingdom impact in their communities, 14 churches in southwest Missouri are hosting the free Big God ACROSS the Ozarks festival Sept. 8-12 at the Gizmo Event Center in Wheaton. The festival, which starts at 7 p.m. every night, features evangelist Ken Freeman and recording artists Dean, Gayna and Geoffery Forrest.
This is the second year for the ACROSS Festival, which drew 7,000+ people last year resulting in 400+ recorded decisions for Christ.
“It sparked a revival all across the area and there have been so many decisions since then,” said Mark Hall, pastor of First Baptist, Wheaton, and one of the ACROSS organizers. “I’ve had the privilege of baptizing 12 since then that told me they prayed to receive Christ at Big God. People were surprised seeing churches working together for a common cause.”
That “common cause” is also one of the driving forces behind the Light Meets the Dark tour.
“It’s not about one church doing something,” said Josh McGuire, assistant pastor at Concord. “It’s about the Kingdom. The vision is to bring together cooperating churches to do a big event to reach the community for Christ. It’s definitely not going to be your standard Sunday night crowd. It’s going to be fun, exciting, an afternoon for families and then a concert that evening from top-notch Christian bands.”
The Jefferson City event begins at 4 p.m. with a family fun day – inflatables, games, popcorn and snowcones – and the 7 p.m. concert, all culminating in a Gospel presentation that will be specifically aimed at young families and students. Volunteers have passed out 25,000 “tickets” and 15,000 flyers promoting the event.
“We’re praying for at least 5,000,” McGuire said.
For more information about the Big God – ACROSS the Ozarks festival, call (417) 652-3898 or go to www.acrossfestivals.com/ozarks. For more information about The Light Meets The Dark tour, go to www.lightmeetsdark.org. For more information about the Family Fun Day, go to familyfunday.org.