Dr. Tony Evans is the founder and senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, founder and president of The Urban Alternative, chaplain of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, and author of over 100 books, booklets & Bible studies. His radio broadcast, The Alternative with Dr. Tony Evans, can be heard on more than 1,300 US outlets daily and in more than 130 countries.

forty-two years means that we have a

testimony 42 years means that you have

hindsight vision on what God has done in

your life 42 years means some clarity

has come your way that you can look back

and you can tell a story now you have a

testimony of God’s provision you have a

testimony of his sovereignty you have a

testimony of his Providence you have a

testimony of His grace and of His mercy

and of his love and of his kindness 42

years simply means that you have a

testimony and a story that you can tell

this church has a testimony but guess

what you also have a testimony each

person in this room can look back and

tell a story of how they’ve gotten to

where they currently are today I want to

talk to you about one verse one verse

that really caught my attention as I was

talking and thinking through what I

would talk about this morning and it’s

what I call a testimony for the ages

because this verse spells out how that

thing works it spells out how a

testimony works how this church has

gotten to where it is how you’ve gotten

to where you are how I’m even able to

stand on this stage right now and be

where God has called me to be at this

very moment it’s a testimony it’s found

in Genesis 50 and verse 20 now you’re

gonna know it well after you I read this

verse and say it out loud you may make

the church face because you know this is

your verse but Genesis 50:20 simply says

this Joseph was looking at his brothers

and he said you meant it for evil but

God meant it for good in order to bring

about this present result to preserve

many lives that right there is a

testimony he’s looking back on his life

and he’s recounting his story to get him

to the place where he currently is now

at about a hundred years old he died at

a hundred and ten and he’s looking back

and letting the

and his presence no his brothers that

there was something bad that happened

but God was able to turn around and make

it good it was to bring me to the place

where I’m currently standing and the

goal is always to preserve somebody’s


that’s this church’s testimony

everything wasn’t always good at the

beginning there were some hard things

that we had to work through in order to

get to the present place where we

currently stand but even though we had

some hard things God took those hard

things and made them good things so that

we can get to a pinnacle or present

result where he has us and the goal is

always to preserve somebody’s life

that’s how the testimony works that’s

how your testimony works that’s how

Joseph’s testimony worked and he’s

letting us know he’s giving us some of

his 20/20 vision and some of his

hindsight so that some of us that may be

in the hard part or the pit part or the

dark part the empty part the part that’s

hard give you a little bit of some of

his vision so that you don’t give up

because there’s going to be somebody in

the future that’s going to be counting

on your testimony the reason why you’re

sitting in this room is because early on

when things are tough the church didn’t

give up and now there are many people

who are benefiting on the church’s

testimony the fact that we can stand

here for 42 years but Joseph lets you

know that this testimony it’s an

investment that God makes in your life

in other words it starts in the red and

moves its way to the black most people

meet God and they wanted to start in the

black you know when God makes an

investment in your life because he has a

place where he’s trying to take you he’s

gonna make that investment and you’ll

find yourself starting in the red but

it’s for the goal of that investment to

take root so that you can move to the

black that’s why you can’t make the

mistake and look at where somebody is

currently and think that you know their


you can’t come to this church and sit

down and and see how big it is and all

the land and all of the buildings and

think that you know how we got here a

lot of people make a sum

when they look at other people and what

they have or what the where they live

and what they drive and they start

assuming things about them but really

the reality is you don’t know them you

don’t know what God took them through to

get them to the place where they

currently are because there were things

that each person in this room has gone

through to make it where you are or are

going through in order to get to the

place where God wants you to be it’s

called the testimony and Joseph spells

out how this thing works he said you

meant it for evil

it started bad but God meant that thing

for good in order to bring about this

present result in order to preserve

somebody’s life he starts out by telling

his brothers you meant it for evil you

know what he was talking about you know

the story I just want to survey it for a

second he’s talking about Genesis 37 you

see Joseph was the man who had favor

from his father his father loved him and

gave him a robe or a tunic a very color

tunic that represented Dominion and

authority that represented his calling

that represented the fact that he had

been handed the rights firstborn right

even though he wasn’t the firstborn so

he had that external evidence of the

father’s favor that he was wearing but

not only did he have that Joseph had a

dream he was a visionary he had a dream

of things that he was thinking about how

high up he would go and that his

brothers would actually be bowing down

to the to him and so somebody didn’t

give his brothers the memo that favor

ain’t fair somebody didn’t let his

brothers know that it everybody doesn’t

get Parshin out the same it doesn’t work

like that Matthew 25 wasn’t written then

so they didn’t know about the talents

and the five and the two and the one

they didn’t understand all of that so

they didn’t get the memo that favor

isn’t fair so when they saw that tunic

and when they heard those dreams they

were jealous and they did not want

Joseph to experi

against the calling on his life so it

says in Genesis 37 23 and 24 that his

brothers stripped him of his tunic his

very colored tunic and then they threw

him into the pit and the pit was empty

without any water in it so here Joseph

is going from having the father’s favor

to being stripped of the external

evidence of the father’s favor then

being thrown into a pit and then being

in a pit where he’s not even getting the

simplest of provisions water and feeling

that it’s empty here he is in the pit of

his testimony he’s thinking and

recounting Genesis 37 while he’s at

Genesis 50 32 a hundred years old and

he’s letting you know that this thing

started bad you know what my brother’s

tried to do they tried to strip me of

the father’s favor that there are people

was you know it’s bad when the people

that you think you can tell your dream –

are jealous of the very dream that you

have and people that you think will push

you towards your dreams are the ones who

want to strip you from your dreams it’s

the sad reality when the people closest

to you don’t want to see your well-being

because they didn’t get the memo their

favor is just not fair and so they

stripped him of the external evidence of

the father’s favor on his life but why

did they do that because they couldn’t

strip him of his dream that’s internal

so because they couldn’t reach into his

brain and strip him of his dream that’s

what they wanted they destruct they

decided to strip him of the evidence of

his dream so that his external body

would never make it to his dream see

this is a tactic of the enemy John 10:10

the enemy comes to steal kill and

destroy he’s trying to take your

testimony from you and the way that he

does that is to strip you of the

external evidence of the father’s favor

in your life so that you will feel like

you have lost the father’s favor in your

life and if I can make you feel like you

have lost the father’s favor then I can

make you

operate as if you do not have the

father’s favor so what the brothers were

doing is they were stripping him

externally but it was so that they can

get an internal result get him into a

pit where he can’t move if I can make

you depress if I can make you think that

your life is worthless if I can make you

think that God is not doing anything

with you that that’s where you’re going

to stay that’s who you’re going to be

that’s the identity that you’re going to

have then I can kill you even when

keeping you alive because you won’t have

a testimony you won’t have a Genesis 50

experience because me stripping you

externally has stripped you internally

that’s what the enemy did with Jobe

you’ve read the story he took his house

he took his family he put boils on his

skin he did all of these external meth

methods but it was for an internal

result you need to deny God my purpose

is to try to get you to denounce God

it’s not about all of these external

things I’m just using that as a vehicle

he did it with Adam and Eve you see this

fruit you see that tree he got him to

think about the external but the purpose

was for internal sin to mess up the

world he did it with Jesus in Matthew

chapter 4 he showed him the rock turn it

into bread he showed them the kingdoms

of this earth I’ll give him to you but I

need you to bow down and worship me he’s

always trying to do something in our

external world to strip us of what God

is trying to do in the spiritual

providential world that’s what Joseph is

talking about when he recounts this

story and that happened to us as a

church most people don’t know that there

was a time when we had nowhere to go as

a church we were at a Dale Turner which

is my elementary school right around the

corner here on Polk Street and we had

nowhere to go because the school had

decided even though we were meeting

there and God’s favor was there and we

were clothed with the place to meet in a

church house they decided they cannot

host us anymore they decided that we

have to move you along and so my parents

and the elders and deacons at that time


rock and a hard place because I thought

we had the father’s favor but now we’re

stripped of the external evidence that

we used to have and so this church has

experienced what it is to feel and see

the father working in your life but then

to also see the enemy try to strip it

from you but just because the enemy

strips it doesn’t mean that God doesn’t

still have it just because you lose

because the enemy does this just because

you lose the external evidence of the

father’s favor doesn’t mean you don’t

still have the internal Providence of

what God is doing we have to have

clarity of vision and Genesis 50 gives

us clarity of vision based on this

testimony that God has a testimony for

your life he has a purpose for your life

it is not random you are not here just

to sit soaked and sour in a random

mundane way of living he can’t create

the universe and create a

self-sustaining world based on the water

from Antarctica when it melts and goes

down so that we can have vegetation so

that we can still breathe and have all

of these things that are working in

unison like your body but then create

you for a random purpose it doesn’t work

like that God has a purpose for your

life if he doesn’t if he didn’t you

wouldn’t be sitting in here but what the

enemy wants you to do is think otherwise

when he put you in that pit oh I like

I’m not gonna make it I’m not really

sure that I’m not gonna get there I

don’t really know if God has my back I

feel forgotten this isn’t for me I see

what everybody else is doing but I’m my

vision is fuzzy because I don’t see what

God is doing in my life that is the

tactic of the enemy to ruin your Genesis

50 experience that God is trying to do

something and Joseph is letting us know

how this thing works my mom can tell you

of how she worked in the sweat factory

for years at the beginning we call it

that because it was our garage and in

the garage

no air conditioned up in there is hot

but she was trying to help Tony Evans

get to where he was trying to go and so

she would call my sisters into the sweat

factory so that they could put tapes in

the envelopes tapes and I see these Matt

mp3’s tapes in the envelope to mail all

over the country national and

international they used to do that from

their garage she can tell you the story

so don’t think just because this house

looks like this now that it didn’t start

with some pit experiences this palace is

just a result of the pit experiences

this palace is just a result of the

testimony of going through Genesis 37 to

get to Genesis 50 that’s what he did he

threw them into a pit that was empty and

those waterless and if the truth be told

there are people in the room that are

feeling empty you’re feeling like you’re

not even getting simple provisions but

as the testimony goes and moves along it

says that you meant it for evil but God

meant it for good

you notice when God shows up you have to

add a contrast conjunction see when God

shows up there is always a but however

conversely something changes when God

shows up matthew mark 10:18 says who was

good other than God alone and when he

shows up he shows up with his nature and

you get to experience it people often

ask well if God is so good then why do I

experience this much bad well because

when you experience the bad that’s what

illuminates that he’s so good if

everything was always good you’d be

confused on where the good is coming

from and he wants to make sure you’re

not confused when you get to your

Genesis 50 testimony

he wants to make sure you know where

this thing is coming from I don’t know

if you’ve ever been to a superhero movie

and the movie didn’t have no villain or

no problem oh that’s a dumb movie nobody

want to watch no superhero movie where

he just flying around just because he

got power he needs to be able to fix

something in order to throw on a super

to his hero and the reason why we know

we serve a superhero because we stand in

at 42 years it’s because there was some

problems that he redirected it said that

you meant it for evil but God meant it

for good in other words we’re talking

about the same Genesis 37 experience but

God changed the meaning of the same

experience because we’re talking about

the same thing but God is a meaning

changer he comes into the problem and he

changes your testimony from a problem to

appraised you’re talking about the same

thing in your testimony this is what

happened but let me tell you how God

turned that thing around because what

God does is he steps into those

scenarios that you thought you would

have never gotten out of and he pulls

you out him out of them because of who

he is not because of who you are but

it’s because of who he is

so that when you give your testimony in

your Genesis 50 experience he is not

excluded let me show you how he did that

for Joseph Joseph was stripped in

chapter 37 but in chapter 41 you see 41

verses 42 starting there you see that

pharaoh takes off his signet ring and

gives it to joseph puts it on his hand

then Pharaoh clothes Joseph with a royal

robe then Pharaoh puts a necklace around

his neck now the necklace the Royal rope

in the ring mean that you share the

authority of Pharaoh it says that when

you come through everybody’s gonna

battle their knee because Joseph had

dreams that got

stripped but he also had dreams that got

him equipped don’t you know that God

will allow you to endure a stripping but

it’s only because he’s trying to

position you in the for a future

equipping understand that when you are

down to nothing it’s only because God is

up to something

you you realize nobody can really strip

you of what God has for you but God will

allow you to be stripped so that he can

have you before he gives you what he has

we’ve got to understand that what you’re

going through is for testimony

somebody’s life is going to be preserved

by your stories so you can’t give up

because we’re being preserved by this

testimony if my parents were to stop

because they were stripped of elder a

Dale Turner we wouldn’t be in here right

now preserving people’s lives the

testimony has to start in the read but

it’s only so God can move you to the

black and you can say it wasn’t me he

did it as I recount that story in my

dad’s story and LDL Turner because I

didn’t finish it

we got stripped and I remember him

telling me that he went in to talk to a

former linebacker of the Dallas Cowboys

named Bob runic Bob runic was in there

and I don’t know what my dad was doing

but I could probably guess don’t have

anywhere to go

Bob Bernick plays for the Cowboys maybe

it was to get a check

because he’ll talk about some given now

make sure we’ve got lights and so he was

in there talking to Bob brunette they’re

great friends are probably just

explaining to him that I had God’s favor

and now we’re stripped of a place to go

and so the church was homeless for a

little while and so he was explaining

that to Bob runic in his office but then

some random guy walked past the room and

he walked past the room and then he

backed up and stood in the doorway so

Nomad is talking to Bob but he’s looking

back over his shoulder like who is this

cat okay so he’s trying to figure out

who this dude is being nosy about our

conversation so he’s starting to feel

you know when somebody’s in your stuff

you start to kind of feel some kind of

way about why are you standing there

keep on moving and then the guy who’s

standing there gets comfortable on the

doorway and crosses his leg so now he’s

giving him a hint that I ain’t going

nowhere I’m gonna stay here and watch

and listen to what’s going on then that

dude comes and sits down next to my dad

so now Tony Evans got smoke coming out

of his ears and fire coming out of his

nose because he’s trying to explain to

Bob runic what’s going on with the

church then the dudes start asking

questions and so now my dad is giving

him short answers yes No

why are you here in his mind he just yes

you know okay we’re trying to do this so

the guy is as it’s probing him for

answers and giving him questions and he

tells him well you know there’s this

this little chapel that we have right

down the street and we’re looking at it

we’ve been talking to the people about

it but we just don’t have the money for

it so we’re trying to figure out what

we’re going to do and that’s when the

guy asked a question he said well how

much does it cost and my dad said in his

brain what’s it to you why are you here

my dad told him he said well you know

it’s just $200,000 then that man pulls

out his checkbook and he opens it up now

the countenance on my father’s face just

changes all of a sudden now he he’s

popping his suit and he’s answering

questions well you know my overall

vision is to have all of the land and he

started doing his sermon kicks you know

he started he started stepping around

because he trying to figure out what’s

about to happen up in here but that man

he wrote a check for $200,000 and handed

it to my father then got up out of that

seat that used to be a nuisance and went

back to that hallway and just walked

right off this church has a testimony

God will allow you to be stripped but

it’s only so that he can show up and do

some equipping up in here so that you

can talk about the goodness of God so

that you can see how you got to from

point A to your point B don’t forget you

didn’t get here because of yo two feet

you got here because of his mercy and

His grace you got here because of where

he’s taking you then he has a testimony

he’s telling his brothers you meant it

for evil but don’t worry it’s okay

because God meant this thing for good

and the last time I checked when he cast

that check it went through because when

God comes through his stuff don’t bounce


so I want to use our church our

testimony to encourage somebody in their


you can’t quit in the pit you can’t stop

you can’t give up you got to understand

that this good God wants to use that bad

scenario to bring you to the pinnacle

point that he created you for and it may

not be me it may not be Tony Evans it

may not be Carolyn it may not be but

it’s yours and what’s yours is yours

he’s telling him you meant it for evil

but God meant this thing for good so God

really was stripped you got that but I

want to show you how else God took that

same scenario to turn it and make it

good it says that the pit Genesis 37 it

says verse 24 it says that the pit was

empty without any water in it now I was

thinking to myself now why in the world

sometimes you have to read the Bible and

then step back and think a little bit

why in the world would the author go

into so much trouble to tell you the

nature of the pit it’s good enough that

he got stripped and he in there why are

you telling me that it’s empty and it

has no water in it so I prayed about

that for about three days what is the

correlation between Joseph’s having to

experience not just a stripping not just

a pit but also a pit that’s also empty

and doesn’t have the provision of water

in it then the Spirit threw it up into

my mind and said this is how it works

God will always prepare you for how he’s

about to use you if you see in chapter

41 he’s giving Pharaoh answers to his

dreams that there is a famine coming

Pharaoh puts him in charge over a famine

a famine means you have people who are

experiencing emptiness no food and who

are experiencing no water so what God

will allow you to do is experience the

purpose of what he’s going to do when he

puts you in the palace because he

doesn’t just want you to have the

information when you preserve somebody’s

life you need to be able to sympathize

with their weaknesses so he has Joseph

in a pit that’s empty and waterless

because I need you to be able to

sympathize with some people who are

about to be empty and waterless when I

reclose you I need you to know what to

do you can’t if somebody’s experiencing

sexual abuse well that’s nice that you

can talk to me from a book but I want to

know that you feel my pain

if somebody’s experiencing a falling out

of the family or a divorce where it’s

nice that you maybe even the pastor but

let me talk to somebody that’s

experienced what I’m going through

there’s the way that God wants to use

you and you can always get the

identifiers by how he’s going to use you

by keeping your eyes open in the pit God

will always give you evidence in your

struggle see most people are thinking

about the struggle but they don’t have

their eyes open to the evidence if you

have your eyes open to the evidence then

even though you’re in the pit you know

what God is gonna do later you know that

he’s gonna use it that’s why people are

passionate about things they previously

experienced have you ever noticed that

your passion to help somebody comes from

the very thing you used to struggle with

God uses that and turns it upside down

so that you can have a testimony to

preserve somebody’s life realize this is

not just about you okay we like to to

correlate scriptures you know from the

New Testament I can correlate scriptures

you know you got Romans 8:28 God will

work all things out for good for those

who love God and are called according to

his see we jump over pews and we

swinging from the rafters on the first

part but he works it out for good

because of his purposes he’s thinking

about whose life he needs you to

preserve he’s thinking about the

outworking of his kingdom a lot of

people sit in the pit for an extended

amount of time because they want God to

change things for their own Christian

narcissism they want God to bring a

cloud down to sit on them for

for their throne for their omniscience

for their omnipresence for what they

want to do in their life

you ain’t the King boo boo Jesus is

trying to do this for his kingdom for

his glory that’s why you’re going

through what you’re going through so you

can’t quit you can’t give up we’re

sitting in these pews because not

because we haven’t been stripped but

because we kept walking and God equipped

he put us in this place Joseph’s got to

a point

it’s 41 51 he named his son Genesis 41

51 he named the fruit Manasseh he named

him Manasseh because it means the Lord

has made me forget about all my troubles

hold on you forgot so you don’t remember

what you went through

no he remembers cuz in Genesis 50 he

said you meant it for evil so it’s not

that he forgot it’s not that his

cognitive capacity has failed it’s just

that where he is is so plush where God

has taken him from is so good that where

he’s been no longer controls him where

he is so even the fruit that comes from

me has to get named based on where I am

I didn’t name him pain I named him

Manasseh which means I don’t even

remember that stuff my mom could tell

you I told you about the sweat factory

but you know when I asked her about the

sweat factor you know she would always

call my sisters in there to help and you

know they’d be like oh here we go as hot

you know you get frustrated when it’s

hot you know so they’re in there trying

to help my mom out in the sweat factory

and when I asked her about those days I

said man I know that was rough because I

wasn’t there I uh I got the best

position in the house baby at a family

all of that rough stuff is over it’s

just party sleep have fun bring me

something to drink um

having fun but they had it hard but when

I asked her about it she says yeah that

was tough but now we got a ministry that

just pumps that stuff out but now we’re

on a thousand stations in over 130

countries but now I’m not in the sweat

factory anymore I’m in this

air-conditioned building that we

purchase that pumps out the Ministry of

Tony Evans but now I’ve been the

executive director for a national and

international ministry for 30 years but

now because when God shows up he makes

you forget a little bit you got a little

bit of amnesia when it comes to what’s

going on in your life not because you

forgotten but because he’s just that

good um my wife our first child for all

of you pregnant ladies in the room right

now this won’t be your story but our

first child

sweet Kelsie if she is down there I’m

not looking at me now I know why God

used me and why my dad used me

illustrations all the time easy pickins

but it wasn’t her fault

we got induced with Kelsie probably a

week before she was scheduled to be born

because they said she was gonna be a big

baby and sure enough she came out at 8 8

so if we would have waited a week

she might have hit that 9 ok our two

sons were 9 5 and 91 so so we ain’t

playing no games but we went in and they

laid down and they gave her medication

we know now that she doesn’t need

medication to have babies because her

Labor’s are quick our last child from

the start of her labor to the delivery

was an hour and a half I mean she she

like a bullet but this one we didn’t

knows our first time and so we we had

some medication we got induced that

medication had a negative effect on my

wife she had contractions with no breaks

so she would have exactly all the ladies

that had babies left

that’s whack so so her contractions are

going up because I’m looking at it on

the monitor and then it’s falling down

and I see her breathing soon and that

thing goes right back up and she would

say Oh Lord here it comes again

and I’m like Lord Jesus and I’m thinking

you know I’m saying out loud I wish I

could take it from you I wish I can in

my mind I’m like man forget about that

thing I can say that now I kept it in

then that’s not right they know heroes

around here we go then we went through

16 hours of labor okay this is not gonna

be your experience though and then

finally the baby came and it was just

yay you know what I was so I had already

shut down in my mind that because of

this experience we just had we done

well who we want and out of there I’m

pretty sure that my wife is not gonna

want to do this again after going

through that type of experience we can’t

so after about ten months past she came

to me and she said I’m ready for number

two I said hmm I said but don’t you

remember what happened with number one

don’t you remember

she said I remember but look at this


so what she was looking at overrode what

she remembered about the pain of the

birth so I said are you sure you want to

do this and she said I’m sure I want to

do this now start getting excited

because while she was telling me she

wants another child I’d kind of know

what that means for me so while she was

talking I was just like this I’m ready

whenever you ready I was just doing the

stanky leg I’m like you take just give

me a word Cornelius just give me a word

I didn’t know we were gonna do it but if

you’re gonna do it just say something

it was that funny yeah it was the baby

see when God delivers what he’s gonna

deliver in your life you’ll look at that

baby and say oh it was worth it

let’s do this thing again there is a

testimony and he said it was so good

that I can’t even remember my troubles

in my father’s household that God is

trying to do something in your life he’s

trying to birth something and produce

something and bring fruit about but you

can’t quit you can’t throw in the towel

in the middle of your testimony or the

stripping from the enemy would have won

that he’s taking you down and you never

lost the father’s favor just because you

lost a little bit of physical evidence

physical evidence those doesn’t override

God’s spiritual providence so never get

it twisted as you’re walking through

this life that I got to keep doing

because somebody’s life is going to be

preserved based on my testimony let me

tell you a story about my testimony just

for a second and most people know I was

a sports guy was the thing is over now

but I was a sports guy football player

played at Duncanville high school won

the state championship then one debate

went to Baylor got educated we don’t win

no games but my parents thought I was a

winner cuz I got a full scholarship that

means you won I care less how many games

you win so I’ve got a full scholarship

full ride to go to Baylor University and

I had a dream everybody knows my dream

was to to play in the NFL I wanted to

play in the NFL and I told God just

allow me to run out the tunnel I just

want to run out the tunnel I just want

to feel the fire and see the planes and

and hear the crowd I just wanted that

opportunity to play a few games in the

NFL and I got a chance I was picked up

in the 2005 draft class by the Dallas

Cowboys some of you cowboy fans know

that’s the draft class of Marion Barber

and DeMarcus Ware and J Ratliff and all

of those guys you don’t know me because

they were better but I was there they

still write checks to everybody I was in

there so I was there but three weeks

into being equipped I was stripped I

walked up to the door and the guy that

we called the Grim Reaper he stepped out

and put his hands on my chest then he

reached out and he took the playbook he

didn’t say a word he just pointed that

way because you know what that means

he’s just going back now only had 20

minutes to mope because I’m playing for

the Cowboys I’ll be home in 20 minutes

so it’s not like I got a flight to cry

about it know I’ve got to go home and

try to reassemble and then I got a call

from the San Diego Chargers I said okay

God let’s make this thing happen

let’s make this dream come to life and

then they said but we’re going to

allocate you to NFL Europe so that you

can develop I was like develop I don’t

need to develop so I go to this NFL

Europe league and things keep going

downhill we’re in training camp and you

have a two hour practice then they let

you take off your helmet and eat a

banana and an apple put it back on and

go do another two-hour practice I said

this ain’t for me I don’t want to do

this we’re out there in Tampa it’s hot

we finally fly to Germany it’s white

walls white sheets no english-speaking

channels for several months I wanted to

quit I called my dad and I told him I

said I’m gonna quit football I’m out I’m

done this is not for me

so I said book a flight cuz I don’t have

no money me and my brother always

talking about we ain’t got no money and

he needed him to co-sign I don’t need

him to co-sign I need you to sign by


I need you to book this ticket so I can

get home because this is not for me I

can’t handle this stripping that I’m

going through my favor it seems like

it’s been lost or gone I need to go home

so he he said are you sure son I said

I’m really sure booked the ticket he

booked the ticket I go sit in the

coach’s office and tell him I’m going

home he said well we really don’t want

you to go home cuz you’re a good player

I said literally I don’t care what you

want it’s Jonathan Evans talk I care

less what you want because I was

frustrated and I’m 22 years old 23 years

old I’m going home right now and he said

well you can’t go home right now because

you haven’t done your exit physicals you

can do your exit physical tomorrow night

because that’s a liability you let a

player go home before he does his exit

physicals they can come back and say I

was hurt on the job and try to get paid

that way so I called my dad and said I

can’t go home till tomorrow night my dad

said don’t you think it’s interesting I

said our Lord here goes this philosopher

that you couldn’t leave when you wanted

to leave he said so I want you to do

something for me I want you to go out to

one more practice and I want you to ask

God if he wants you there and spider

whether you think you want to be there

so I went back out to that practice and

I kid you not

in the practice I was crying you know

when you’re really crying because you

can’t control your neck

I’m crying my neck is cocking back I

can’t do nothing about it because I

don’t want to be there this is a pit for

me it’s a pit experience but I asked God

if you want me to be here then you’re

gonna have to give me a peace that

surpasses all understanding and I kid

you not the next time I put my hand in

the dirt that’s exactly what I felt made

the next play and turned around and

looked at my coach and I said I’m

staying and he said okay great I don’t

know where this came from but then I

realized by the end of the season my

teammates had given me a new nickname

they call me Reyes seven players

accepted Jesus Christ

so now I know the business transaction

that has to take place to get on the

field in the NFL so I like I do is pray

for people and lead people to Jesus now

you gonna let me run out the tunnel

right so I’m young so I’m trying to

manipulate God for him to put me in the

palace where I see myself so I go to the

Titans I’d do it what God has called me

to do but I still get cut I go to the

Washington Redskins I do it but I still

get cut but finally in 2011 I’m standing

in the tunnel I circled back around to

the Dallas Cowboys and I called my dad

and I said dad we did it we here I’m

about to run out the tunnel for the

first time and my dad said Amen son Amen

now what you should be wondering is why

in the world you got your cell phone in

the tunnel because the first time I ran

out of the tunnel for my first NFL game

I wasn’t the player I was the chaplain


because God has a plan for your

testimony now it may not be your plan

but it’s a good plan and it’s to give

you a future and to give you a hope you

have a testimony in the room what I came

here to say this morning is the church

has a testimony but it’s to preserve

somebody’s life you have a testimony but

it’s to preserve somebody’s life don’t

think it’s about you unless you end up

like a fruit that’s eating itself

rotten you’ve been placed here to

preserve somebody’s life by the blood of

the Lamb and the word of your testimony

Jesus Christ has a testimony the reason

why we have a testimony is because he

has a testimony he was rejected by the

people who he came to save but he lived

a perfect life he experienced death and

then he rose to be with the Father and

the only reason why you can be grateful

in your testimony is because of his

testimony the only reason why we can

celebrate a Jackie Robinson anniversary

of 42 years is like you remember Jackie

Robinson he would go into the stadiums

where he was rejected but he would still

hit homeruns Jesus stepped up to the

plate over 2,000 years ago the enemy

tried to throw him a curveball but he

had a perfect swing with his life and he

knocked that thing over the centerfield

wall he ran around first base of his

humanity second base of death and

rejection third base of resurrection but

then he came home to be seated at the

far by the right hand of the Father and

we can celebrate our testimony because

of the home run that he hit we can get

excited about our testimony because he

gave us a good at-bat we can be excited

about who we are because of who he is

and I’m excited about our testimony as a

church because Jesus knocked that thing

over the centerfield wall and the crowd

goes wild because Jesus made that thing

happen because he has a testimony we

have a testimony and you have a


tell your story live your story because

it will preserve somebody’s life

somebody ought to praise them because

that’s why we have a testimony in the