Alpha Hayward loves reaching people for Jesus in a park right in the middle of a neighborhood. His ministry has developed an innovative plan for organizing an outreach day at your local park. On today’s Evangelism Podcast we will talk about park ministry and about how to activate your local church in evangelism.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (00:00):
Alpha Hayward loves reaching people for Jesus in a park, right in the middle of a neighborhood. His ministry has developed an innovative plan for organizing an outreach day at your local park. On today’s evangelism podcast. We will talk about park ministry and about how to activate your local church. In evangelism.
Evangelism Podcast Host (00:33):
Welcome to the evangelism podcast with Dr. Daniel King, where Daniel interviews, full-time evangelists, pastors, missionaries, and normal everyday Christians to discover how they share their faith, their powerful testimonies, and amazing stories that will inspire you to reach people with the good news. And now here’s your host, missionary and evangelist Daniel King.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (00:57):
Welcome to the evangelism podcast. I’m Daniel King, and I’m excited about telling people about Jesus today. I have a very special guest Alpha Hayward. Thank you so much for being with me today.
Alpha Hayward (01:08):
Hey, thank you, Daniel. It’s a pleasure to be here with you today.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (01:12):
Now you are doing days in the park in, so you have put together a manual that helps people that want to do an evangelistic activity in a park. Tell me how did you get started doing that?
Alpha Hayward (01:29):
Yeah, so years ago, I’d say back in 2006, when I was still a youth pastor the Lord gave me a vision at a park with doing music and providing food and games for children and also doing a three on three basketball tournament. And so that’s where it got birthed. And just ever since then each year we just kept doing it. We just kept doing an annual park event based off of the scripture out of Luke chapter 14 where Jesus talks about the parable of the great banquet.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (02:05):
Give me just a second here.
Speaker 5 (02:09):
Yeah. All right. Looking good, looking good.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (02:17):
So you had a vision of the, this great banquet. Yeah. And you decided to start reaching out in the park. Tell me what does one of these park outreaches look like?
Alpha Hayward (02:28):
So it basically looks like a, a party at the park, like a, like a festival or even, even you, you could say, like, it looks like a really huge birthday party, you know? It’s a barbecue it’s music. The difference is, is that it’s like live music, different artists coming out. There’s people who are speakers that come out there’s professional athletes that come out. And when we started this, it was pretty basic, you know, it was, was just using resources from the relationships we had of people who were willing to come for free so that we could do it on a budget of 500 bucks. And so that’s, that’s how we started. So share with me some of the testimonies of what God has done through these outreaches. So it started with me talking with my church. So I was a youth pastor and the only real evangelism type ministry that was happening in our church was happening through our ministry because my wife and I have been evangelistic ever since we were involved in ministry.
Alpha Hayward (03:37):
So, and so what we thought was we would talk to a couple folks that we knew around the neighborhood that had like, like one guy had a skateboard shop. And so we asked him, Hey sorry, we haven’t met before, but I see you have a skateboard shop. It was called skate Legion with Greg Maxwell, me and I said, Hey, Greg would you like to help us reach some teenagers by coming over and setting up some ramps and you can promote your business if you want to, but there’s, you know, there’s teenagers that like skateboarding. So would you like to come join us and help us with this once in a while? Maybe like whenever you’re available. And, and he said, you know, that sounds like a good idea. I think I would want to do that.
Alpha Hayward (04:25):
And so that’s kind of what got the ball rolling. That’s what kind of got things started. And then I came outside one day and I just, boom, just had this vision and, and I called a friend. I said, Hey, I think God just gave me this vision of doing like a concert outreach event at this park with food and stuff. And so I just started sharing it with people that I know. So with Greg Maxwell me with some pastors at my church with some friends that I knew, and then that’s how I started making connections because I met Tim burn through Greg Maxwell mirror through one of my friends. I heard about the Louis plow association. And so I just started wherever there was an opportunity to meet someone. I just took it. And I just started talking with people and just started sharing with people with no no agenda of like, I gotta get money, I gotta get money.
Alpha Hayward (05:19):
My focus wasn’t on getting money. My focus was on Lord, put me in touch with people that would like to do something like this. And through the years of building relationship, the, the ministry of day in the park grew because of the relationships, not because of the money, the money came as the ministry grew so completely different mindset or, or even model of doing outreach. And what’s different is this is like neighborhood outreach. So the focus isn’t a huge citywide event. It’s focused on a specific neighborhood. So instead of maybe thinking 2050 or a hundred thousand people, you’re thinking maybe a thousand people, 500 people, maybe, maybe even 5,000 people.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (06:10):
So now if someone drives past a park, they see your event going on, mm-hmm <affirmative> what are they going to see? What’s going to attract them to stop and say, Hey, I wanna see what’s happening. Right?
Alpha Hayward (06:23):
So of course we do our mailers. We do some door to door. We do some talking to some business owners and stuff. And what we do is we put up the flyers the posters, and it says the day in the park, it doesn’t advertise any specific person. There’s not even an image of a person’s face on it or anything. It just says the day in the park, and then underneath it, it says something like community event or family friendly event, something like that. So that the neighborhood knows, Hey, this is something that perhaps me and my kids can check out. And so they’ll also see things on their like games and prizes and or cotton candy, snow cones, or they’ll, they’ll see stuff like that, all, all over the banner and poster.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (07:13):
And so not only are you doing day in the park, but you’re also pastoring a church, right. And you are by vocational because you also have a business that you run. Right. So how do you juggle all these different balls?
Alpha Hayward (07:29):
It’s it’s difficult at times, but one thing that helps me for sure is that my, my wife is side by side with me through all this. Another thing is my business is at the stage where I have a good manager. That’s able to run the business when I’m not there. And at the church, there are several elders and leaders that do a great job at taking their role and serving and doing what they’re supposed to do. So it gives me the freedom to be able to move around a little more and, and to be able to kind of put on the different hats at the different seasons. So when it’s time to get ready for day in the park, I can put on that hat when it’s time to be pastor alpha, I can put on that hat. And when it’s time to run, Alpha’s auto detail, I can also put on that hat.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (08:17):
Do you think that there’s different skills that are needed for each of these different areas?
Alpha Hayward (08:23):
Well, certainly there are some skills, right? Because auto detailing, you you’ve gotta know how to run a buffer in shampoo carpets correctly. But for the most part, what it takes is having absolute faith in the Lord, having a good work ethic and having vision and being willing to be the kind of person who can train up some other leaders and then release them to do things so that you don’t feel like you have to be a hundred percent here and a hundred percent there and a hundred percent there so that you can kind of spread it out.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (08:53):
Let’s talk about your church. I have a lot of pastors that listen to the evangelism podcast and they’re looking for ways to get their church involved in reaching out to the community. How do you create an atmosphere of evangelism within a local church,
Alpha Hayward (09:13):
Pastors that wanna see more evangelists in their church have to lead as an evangelist. Your approach to ministry needs to shift to being very missional. So you have to be thinking more like a missionary than you are a American church planter and your agenda and focus becomes different. You’re, you’re not focused so much on getting people in the seats. You’re Mo you’re, you’re more focused on reaching the lost, and then having them have a love for Jesus to where they want to be discipled. So you, you just do a little bit of focus and, and shifting of how, how you think and just make sure that your heart’s in the right place, which is being very kingdom and being very mission based.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (10:01):
Now, I, I know that you put together a manual for how to have a day in a, in the park. Yes. And so people who want to take this idea and run with it, maybe do it in their neighborhood or, or, or their community. And I understand that the manual is on the, the website of the global network of evangelists. And so I’ll put a link to where, so people can download the manual, but kind of just give us a breakdown what’s in that manual. And, and what secrets does it share for doing one of these outreaches?
Alpha Hayward (10:32):
Sure. So what the manual will do is the manual will give you at, at, at the very least a starting place. And it’ll also encourage you so that you would know that you can do outreach and not have money, be the hangup some, so many times we think, man, I don’t have the money for that. Or, or we think that it has to be humongous in order for it to be good, but that’s not true. I would just encourage you to, to peruse it, kind of look at it a little bit, download it because it is free take from it, what you can use and then add to it. What fits your neighborhood? What fits your church, your community, or your missions trip that you’re doing take from it and use it the best that you can. You might even find some things that you would be able to modify to make it better.
Alpha Hayward (11:19):
So I would just encourage you to check it out and see it as a good, at anything else, a good starting place. And just also re just also remember this, that food and music are universal languages. You can go to any country and if you’re gonna offer food to bless people, and you’re gonna have some music there, that’s gonna help you attract some attention. And at even if it attracted 10 people, a hundred people, whatever, you’ll be able to use that opportunity then to be able to share the love of Jesus with anybody who would come for at least some free food and to hear some music.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (11:55):
That’s awesome. Well, I so love what you are doing day in the park, alpha Hayward. If someone wants to find out more about your ministry and about what you do. Sure. Do you have a website or a way that people can connect with you?
Alpha Hayward (12:08):
We do it is called the day in the park.com.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (12:12):
Awesome. Well, if you’re listening and you have a heart to do evangelism in your neighbor, your neighborhood they, they have some great resources to help you out. Brother alpha. Thank you for being on the evangelism podcast.
Alpha Hayward (12:23):
You bet, brother, thank you so much. And if anyone needs help, just reach out to me. God
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (12:27):
Bless you so much for listening today. I am excited about telling people about Jesus. And I want to invite you to be a part of helping us to rescue people from hell and take them with us to heaven. There’s two things you can do to help. First of all, can you go find the evangelism podcast on apple iTunes and leave us a positive review by giving a review, you will help other people find these valuable resources about sharing our faith. And second, would you become a financial partner with king ministries? Every single dollar that people give us enables us to lead at least one person to Jesus. And so that means for only $1, you can help start a party in heaven. And so today I want to invite you to become a monthly partner. You can start out for just a dollar, but if God puts on your heart to do more, of course you can do more. But please go to king ministries.com and become a monthly partner with us today to help us to lead more people to Jesus. Thank you so much. And God bless you
Evangelism Podcast Host (13:47):
For more information about how to share your faith or to financially support our worldwide evangelistic outreaches. Visit king ministries.com. Again, that’s king ministries.com.
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