Surfers Of Faith

By Rebecca Hagelin

Every day my e-mail inbox is bombarded with the worst the Internet has to offer. It was inevitable that the purveyors of porn and smut would be among the first to seize the technology of the Internet as an effective method in plying their wares as they seek to enslave a new generation with addictions that are destructive to their spirits, character and families.

It can be depressing to be constantly reminded of the depravity of mankind through such unwanted solicitations. It breaks my heart to consider how many minds and hearts are being damaged through the Internet being used in this manner.

However, I quickly remind myself about how much good is being done around the world through the Net, too. My spirit rejoices and marvels at the way the good news of Christ is being spread and shared with younger generations through the wonder that is the Internet. Allow me to introduce you to one such site that is designed for those who like to surf the net and surf the waves: Surfers Of Faith.

Before you read any further, I must tell you up front that the young surfer who was given the vision to encourage other surfers to share the message of Christ on the beaches of the world also happens to be my brother, Josh Redd. Although it is the fact that he is my brother that first caused me to log on to Surfers Of Faith, it is the quality of the site and the purity of his vision that has caused me to want to share his site with WND readers.

The purpose of Surfers Of Faith is simple. As Josh writes, “Surfers Of Faith Ministries is dedicated to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to the surfing community by means of various activities: Bible studies, Christian concerts, surf contests, community outreaches and through the Internet.”

The organization has been around for just over a year, but its Internet component has already reached surfers around the world as evidenced through the e-mail it receives from such far away places as Australia, South Africa and Brazil. The site includes daily devotionals, global surf reports, testimonials, a photo gallery, opportunities for mission trips and a chat room for surfers to encourage each other in their walk with Christ and in their efforts to share the Gospel.

Founded in Central Florida, SOF attracts surfers from ages 17-55, both male and female, and seeks to establish local chapters on every continent. Weekly, Josh receives inquiries from readers who see the value of sharing their faith with those who share the love of the sport of surfing and want to know how to start an SOF chapter in their areas.

But the vision of SOF is far greater. According to Josh, “We seek to reach every surfable nation with the message of Jesus Christ. Some of the most unreached places around the world are along the coastlines. There are villages that have yet to hear the Gospel. It’s our responsibility to reach these people and get the harvest ready.” SOF seeks to establish Christian surf camps in Third World countries like the recently terrorized Bali, and all across Central America and along the shores of South America. Josh believes that “as we continue to reach and build up surfers for missions, churches will be planted and lives will be saved.”

“There are surfers and villagers along the coastlines of the world who would never enter a church. These people can be reached by Christian surfers who care enough to share the life-giving message of Jesus Christ. When I realized that the surfboard could be my pulpit, I immediately felt a calling to encourage other surfers of faith to see the wonderful opportunity for missions through a sport we love. Surfers are very mobile people, frequently traveling to beaches around the world. If we become equipped with how to share the Good News and are given a supportive network, we can reach people in distant places who are often isolated and lonely.”

Josh and the few volunteers that work with him to run the ministry and the site are young 20-somethings who are using the Internet for the greatest purpose of all. Their slogan, “Across the generations, in every surfable nation” speaks of the love and vision in their hearts. As of now, the site and activities are funded by the items sold in the online store, donations and what they are able to provide from their own pockets. To find out more about SOF or how you can be a Surfers Of Faith partner, send an e-mail to Josh.