David Bradshaw didn't simply develop a relationship with Jesus over time.
At the age of 15, Bradshaw received a radical introduction to Christ and the Holy Spirit during the famed Brownsville Revival in 1995 at Brownsville Assembly of God in Pensacola, Florida. He came back from Pensacola a totally changed teenager, one "bursting" with enthusiasm and on fire for Jesus.
More than 25 years later, Bradshaw is still serving God with his whole heart and soul as the founder of Awaken the Dawn Missions Base in Fredericksburg, Virginia, a movement dedicated to helping people get into the personal presence of God and to launch a new season of awakening in America to God's goodness.
Considering the manifestation of the Holy Spirit that occurred in Brownsville during the revival, it isn't difficult to understand what happened to Bradshaw during his visit there.
"I got filled with the Holy Spirit very dramatically," Bradshaw told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. "Prior to that, I wasn't really engaged with the Lord very much. But I came back from Brownsville completely and utterly transformed.
"I was 15, just starting high school. I was a young man and I went to a Christian school. Nobody at that age I knew was actually a believer. But it was such a radical encounter with God's love and His presence and the reality of Jesus' person. That's what transformed my heart. It wasn't moralism. It wasn't just a moral code or even just a fear-based pursuit of God but a hunger that had burst in my heart.
"I got so desperately hungry for God and came back to my high school and just began to boldly tell my friends to preach the gospel. They put me in front of the chapel, and I think I made 100 friends and 100 enemies. Honestly, a move of God started among young people in our whole city."
Little did Bradshaw know that years later, he would become a pastor and help lead a nationwide Pentecostal movement.
"Of course, I didn't know when I was a teenager that I'd go into full-time ministry," Bradshaw says. "But the heart of what David says in Psalm 27, 'for one thing you've desired of the Lord, that one thing to see the beauty of the Lord, to dwell in intimacy with the Lord,' absolutely consumes my life.
"I mean that in every sense of the word. It's the healthiest way to live. That was the Genesis, the birthing really, of what became Awaken the Dawn."
Awaken the Dawn is mobilizing a new Jesus movement in America. His new book, Awaken the Dawn, poses the question, "What if the presence of God became so real in people's hearts that it revived the church?"
For more of Bradshaw's inspiring story, tune into this episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network.
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