Andrew Palau is the son of Luis Palau. He gave his life to Jesus at his father’s festivals in Jamaica. Now he is an evangelist who boldly shares the good news. On today’s podcast, he shares his story of how God saved him, called him to be an evangelist, and opened the door for him to minister across Africa.
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Please listen to The Evangelism Podcast with Evangelism Coach Daniel King
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (00:00):
Andrew Palau is the son of Luis Palau. He gave his life to Jesus at his father’s festival in Jamaica. Now he’s an evangelist who boldly shares the good news on today’s podcast. He shares his story of how God saved him, called him to be an evangelist and open the door for him to minister across Africa and in many other parts of the world.
Evangelism Podcast Host (00:34):
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.
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (00:58):
Welcome to the evangelism podcast today. I have a very special guest, Andrew Palau, the son of the great evangelists from Argentina, Luis Palau. And so we are sitting in the nation of Malawi tonight. The festival begins here in Blantyre brother. Andrew, thank you for being with me today. Good to be together,
Andrew Palau (01:20):
Daniel. Thank you. Thanks for coming. And we get to serve together again. It’s amazing, right?
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (01:25):
Yeah. So let’s start at the beginning. How did you come to Jesus? I know it’s a really great story and it involves coming to a festival.
Andrew Palau (01:34):
I love festivals. I am the jokes on me. I always say I came to the Lord out of Luis Palau festival in Kingston, Jamaica at the age of 27. And I was born and raised in that great Christian home. You said the great evangelist. I’m like, he was great. He is great. He’s greater than ever. Now six months ago, he went to be with the Lord and you know, the doctor said three to six months at first and the Lord give us three great years, so much accomplish so many great family dynamics advance. It’s just a tremendous blessing. But yeah, dad and mom you know, had their third son. That was me, twins, Kevin and Keith, then me and then my little brother, Steve, but you know, the Bible says all of us like sheep have gone astray.
Andrew Palau (02:21):
Each one has turned to their own way. So mom always says you, everybody wants to hear your testimony, but I had just as much trouble with Kevin, Keith and Steve, you know but my, my, you know, if we each go our own way, my way was longer away from the Lord, more burdensome, I suppose Kevin and Keith and Steve taming in their time. But I took so much longer, just ran off into the world and all the garbage of the world, alcohol and drugs and all those relationships of that lifestyle. And you know, had a great relationship, mom and dad, because I wasn’t an angry, you know belligerent rebel. I was much more difficult than that. I was just, you know, you just couldn’t pin me down. I was happy, nice out this facade on the outside, happy and peaceful. And, but inside there’s turmoil and a real selfish self-interest and they were trying to figure that out.
Andrew Palau (03:16):
What do we do? 27 years? I wandered away and they never gave up. And that’s how I came to faith. Really. I would, you know, God has chosen to use people who deliver the gospel, who lived the life. And that example, their love for one another. He says they will know about me and that, that they’re following me by their love to one another. I saw that in the world around me, eventually it impacted me, but mom and dad prayed for me and that’s really foundational, right? The power of prayer is so critical in the salvation story of anybody. And I see that so powerfully in my life, they lived the life. That’s the second thing they did. They were just faithful, you know, and they weren’t perfect, but they were changed and you could see it. And when everything crumbled around me in that sense, you know, and it became evident.
Andrew Palau (04:04):
I looked around and like, where can I go from here? And it’s like, there’s that island of strength of people with peace and in this troubling world and you, you gravitate to it, right? It’s like the aroma of life to you then. And I moved towards it. So then they shared with me the gospel and in so many ways, one-on-one sending people after me, you know, sending me books, writing me letters. But ultimately I was living in Boston five years out of the university working my way up, the corporate ladder. That sounds better than it really was. But I was out there in Boston working and they, they just said, son, we’re having this festival. It’s in Jamaica. Do you want to come? And I was like, I don’t really want to go to the festival, but I do want to go to Jamaica.
Andrew Palau (04:49):
And when I went out there, the Lord had been orchestrating things in such a way, unbeknownst to me or them really. I think they just moved in obedience to the spirit. Like they had a lot of festivals. They didn’t invite me to, but when the spirit prompted them, they were faithful and they invited me. And I went out there and long story short, you know when I heard that gospel message for the thousands of time, I would suppose. It’s just like, like we hear you hear people say this all the time and maybe, you know, some of you have experienced it where you’re in a crowd and it feels like it’s just you and God. And I sense that it’s like, I know dad’s preaching. I suspected he was needling me and, you know, going for me. But it wasn’t really evident by the message.
Andrew Palau (05:32):
I think he was preaching about the rich, rich young ruler that night. I’m like, I’m not rich. I don’t rule anything. This isn’t for me, but it was for me. And the spirit was pushing me and, and, and the hound of heaven, you know, getting me and I, I finally relented and just said, God, please, will you forgive me? And of course he is faithful. Cleansed me in that moment, lifted me up, took the shame and the guilt field, me of the many addictions that were harassing me, that I brought into my life and, you know, getting a new desires of my heart. And really my calling for the ministry came in that very moment. I’m kind of consolidating a couple moments really. But in that season of repentance, the Lord brought me this calling, which was very simple, which was that he just said, you’ll tell everyone what I’ve done. I had no idea what that meant, but I was like, of course, what else would I do look at what’s happening. I didn’t realize what he was saying. It came in sort of phases of revealing itself, you know what a good God we have. Huh. And that’s how it happened. And my wife was very involved. Her testimony as a Jamaican woman, her family involved in the festival. I saw her testimony and the testimony of her brother having recently come to faith, all these things come together. Don’t they?
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (06:49):
And then how did you start to grow in your understanding that you had the calling of an evangelist upon your life? Because of course your, your, your father was an evangelist, had that strong calling on his life. How did that desire to preach the gospel, start to grow in you?
Andrew Palau (07:05):
I wanted people to experience what I’d experienced. You know, you, you experienced that radical transformation for me. Some people are really in longer slower seasons and then they come, but for me, it was just that incredible radical transformation and lifting. So it was startling to me and stark, you know, from death to life, from dark to light. And I wanted everyone to experience it. I just thought I’ll do whatever it takes. So I see my dad is Luis Palau, his work as effective as I’ve experienced. I want to empower it with any small thing I could do. So I started carrying his bags and learning and growing. I had no intention or idea in my mind at all of being a preaching evangelist being up on in front of people was like, it was so far outside the realm of my interest or capacity. It was horrifying to think of, of it.
Andrew Palau (07:59):
So I was just thinking of, maybe I can serve dad and become part of the team. I would spend my life for this and the, whatever, whatever it is. But as I began to do that, opportunities would come in. The cities, people would think, oh, there’s lease plus son. He will maybe he’ll come to our school or maybe we’ll come to this. And I resisted it so much. I was like, dad don’t do that to me. I don’t want to go up front. And he was like sympathetic, but not really. He would put me in front and say, just tell them what God did. And I would, I remember the first time ever, I was so angry at him. I just couldn’t believe he would do it to me. And he, we were at a school. I think it was in Guatemala, my first international trip with him.
Andrew Palau (08:38):
And there was a school and I, I, I thought of trying to share my testimony. It was confusing to me even to think, what did God do? I don’t know how to describe it, but I did my best in many tears, bawling. The interpreter couldn’t even interpret practically. He probably made his own message up because I was so myself. And but I think it was, you know, 80 boys came to faith that day. And I, and I think dad noted it. I just thought, wow, that’s crazy. It just goes to show there’s power in the gospel, because that was weird. But that, that was like a moment. I always think back to my friend Dan Owens, who is a great evangelist. Do you remember Dan? You might not have met him. He went to be with the Lord. He was on our staff at that time as a really a right-hand man to dad an encourager and evangelist.
Andrew Palau (09:26):
And he, he took me under his wing and right after I got back, he said, Andrew, come with me. He was doing a crusade in a little town called Brookings, Oregon, tiny little coastal town in Southern Oregon. And I was so excited. Oh, I get to go with Dan and carry his bags and learn and grow from him. And on the on the, on the ride in the van, down to the coast, he said to me, just like an hour out of town, it’s like a six hour drive. He said, on, on Saturday night, you’re going to share your testimony, Andrew. And I was like, no, you’re insane. I’m not going to do it. I just did it in Guatemala. It was a disaster. I hate it. It’s agony, I’m terrible. And he’s like, you’re doing it. And I was like, okay. I said, I would do what, you know, he’s my boss.
Andrew Palau (10:10):
I got to do it. So I did it. Same thing, tears, almost indecipherable, you know, but I tried, he reminded me of the simple facts. Don’t miss the cross. Don’t, you know, deliver the gospel, share your story. Trust the Lord. Many people came to faith and, you know, I just had a little moments of opportunity along the way. And it, it became evident. It was many years later. I think it was probably 12 years of serving dad and in directing crusades and directing festivals, eventually that at a point in time the pressure came. I was like, Moses, you know, I suppose I’m pretty sympathetic to Moses because he, when he said to God, like you got the wrong guy, I don’t talk so good. You know, he probably, it probably was true, right? It’s not like you have some massive eloquent driven. Like from the day he was born, just give me a crowd.
Andrew Palau (11:05):
He felt what was true in the flesh and the human side. He probably was terrible, but God didn’t care about that. He said, I told you to do it. Are you going to do it? Yes or no. And I remember in this season where I was being moved into the preaching evangelism part, I’m kind of fast forwarding to that. It was agony for about a year. Things were getting tense and you know, my disobedience to that call began to reveal itself, even in relationships and with me and Wendy. And she’s like, what is wrong with you? Don’t you see, you know, like you guys are trying to push, I thought they were operating in the flesh. Like you guys all just think that just because I’m an Elisa son that I’m going to be evangelists, that doesn’t even make sense. But it w it was, it was what God had for me.
Andrew Palau (11:48):
Finally, I was reading about Moses and in, just in this disturbed season resisting and I read that story. And then I got to the part where zipper, Torah, Moses, his wife realized that it said the Lord was coming to take Moses’s life. Like, you look at the texts, you think, oh, it looks like God. And Moses worked it out. Right. But Moses was going to get it, you know? And I, I, it’s just this revelation in my mind of like, that’s you. And I really felt this genuine sense that like, I’m dead. You know, that the Lord has given me this opportunity and he’s coming to take me. I don’t know if he would have taken my life or just taking the opportunity for me, whatever it would have been. It was serious. And it was like an immediate, like in the same way, my conversion was immediate.
Andrew Palau (12:39):
I just immediately repented. I’m like, I it’s like you. I came to my senses. Right. And I was like, oh God, please. I’m so sorry. If it’s not too late, forgive me. I will do it. I’ll do anything you say. I said, I’d do anything. And now it comes to this and I’m resisting. Please forgive me. And he was so merciful opened up the opportunities that came from them to, to be in cities and serve. I love the cities. I love the unity. I love since I see how it, it got me to that place. I see how it can get others to that place. And so I really believe in the model, how it brings unity, furthers, unity, really how it provides opportunities for for people to you know, it says as an evangelist, you’re going to be inefficient for preparing God’s people for works of service. So I see how the environment of the festival provides a lot of that. So you’re fulfilling that you’re proclaiming the gospel is pure joy to me. So long answers, Daniel, sorry,
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (13:36):
Your father was very well known throughout Latin America. And then later doing lots of festivals in the United States, but it seems like the door that God has really opened for you over the years has been right here in Africa. And so right now, we’re in Malawi. This is actually the second time that we have been in Malawi. In 2016, the Palau team came to Lilongwe, which is the capital Malawi. And at that time I came and collaborated on one of the satellite festivals. It was, it was Mizzou, which is like three hours north of long way. And it was me and Keith Cook, collaborating. And, and it’s, you know, it’s such a privilege to be a part of the global network of evangelists, which is your entire network of evangelists all over the world that you’re encouraging and helping, and, and this idea of collaboration that working together, that we can accomplish something much greater than if we all work apart. And so now we are in Blantyre. The city is named after the birthplace of David Livingstone, the first missionary Explorer who came through this part of Africa. And tell
Andrew Palau (14:51):
Me kind of what you have seen in this journey here in Malawi and kind of what the strategy is and what you’re hoping that God does in this nation. Yeah. Well, God gave me my once I’ve relented, I went to another mentor of mine, Tim Rob net, who has really been super involved in all of our evangelists, networking and relationships. He’s been such a great mentor to us all and discipler. He, he said to me at that time, I said, look I I’m I’m, I’m in, you know, forgive me. I had to ask everyone to forgive me for causing such a, you know, upheaval at the team. And he said, that’s fine. Ask the Lord for where you should be. And I said, what do you mean? He meant, he said, just geographically. And I began to think quickly, the Lord gave me this geographic understanding.
Andrew Palau (15:40):
Like, if you are involved in these areas each year, taking any open door that comes, that will be the fulfillment of what I’m asking to do. So it was a number of places in the U S Latin America, very obvious. The UK, there was a strange burden to say persist and a few other places, but Africa wasn’t there yet a year later. So that’s how I think, by the way, that’s why, if we have one festival in each of those places every year, six to eight, then I know like we’re on track. But Africa came when we adopted our daughter, Sadie from Ethiopia, the Lord added it, because at that time, dad had never been in Africa. We didn’t know anything about Africa, so it didn’t, it didn’t the Lord didn’t put it on my mind. It wasn’t a natural kind of supernatural thing.
Andrew Palau (16:27):
It was, it came later uniquely supernaturally to Wendy and I, when we were there in Addis Ababa, getting Saidy, the Lord just said, add it. And I said, happily, yes, but where do I start? I went back home to Tim Robinett and I said, Tim, you’re not going to believe this. God just, you know, God doesn’t speak to me like that much, maybe three or four times that clearly, and to me and Wendy together was like, whoa, what are we going to do? And I said, Tim, what do you think we should do? And it was amazing. He just put his hand on his desk and had a piece of paper on it. And he said, that’s very interesting because here’s a, an invitation for you, not Louise because everybody invited Lewis. And then if, if I, if he couldn’t do it, then they’d invite me and say, oh, okay.
Andrew Palau (17:10):
You know? But and it was for me, will Andrew plow come and do a festival in Kigali, Rwanda? And I was like, I was just floored. You know, I was like, what do you mean? Where does this come from? I don’t know anyone there, but somehow the Lord had orchestrated it just to confirm this thing. And Tim reminded me, I had been doing some things in Poland, Romania, India, with Tim’s guidance. Like we all have gone with Tim, right. He just a set us all up so beautifully and giving us chances. But, but he said, don’t forget. Also last year you were in Cairo, Egypt. And I had done my first African festival already and long story, I’m sorry, I get excited, but I’ll bore you to tears. But so he was like, God said 10 capital cities in 10 years, which was again, very weird, like very precise.
Andrew Palau (17:57):
I’m like, that sounds like a marketing campaign. Lord. I can’t tell anybody. And he’s like, well, then don’t tell anybody, but that’s your calling? So we had been in Cairo kind of a confirming, like, again, like Tim was right, just so you don’t think it’s your bright idea he had already begun to do at Kira was one Kigali. Now we went through the 10 capital cities. And from there he’s given us freedom to then expand to non-capital cities as well. So now I feel like we will push to when my, when I’m dying, I will have an African festival on the books, I suppose that would be my dream. And that’s why Africa became such a, such a passion for us. But in the beginning also, I thought I don’t ever want to go to the cities alone. I want to go with a team.
Andrew Palau (18:39):
Dad set the example. He gave us all these opportunities. And so in this festival here, like this week, there’s a ton of us, you know, spread out across the city. I have my part, but man, we’ve seen far more people come to faith in the schools that I haven’t had. I haven’t even had the privilege of going to the schools yet. It’s been all Malawi and evangelists in there. 12,000 people have come to faith already before the festival starts. Most of them, I think in those schools, you went to the schools, you and Wesley went.
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (19:08):
Yeah. And I came actually 10 days early and we did events in Balaka and Luchenza and Mulanje, and just saw tremendous results. I think Desmond Henry has added up all the numbers. We had total attendance over 60,000 people. So before even the big festival comes here to Blantyre, there’s always already been a tremendous harvest of what God is doing here. And
Andrew Palau (19:35):
Your festivals that you guys did have collaboration. My festivals have a massive collaboration. Yours has a massive collaboration and the whole thing is a massive collaboration. So that’s kind of, my vision is like to whatever degree we can just empower people in their gifts and introduce networks to each other. Then, you know, you really are building a strong momentum for the future that we can. We’ve been invited back. I know you guys have been invited back to Malawi because of the alliances over a thousand churches participating in Blantyre over a thousand churches, participating in your cities that you went to. It’s really beautiful. And we’re excited that there’s great days ahead for the, for us together and all of you you’re in it.
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (20:18):
Yeah. So if you’re an evangelist, I’d encourage you to go to evangelism.global. And that’s the website for the global network of evangelists. And you can find out more about how you can be a part, how you can join the GNE and how you can participate in helping to reach the world. Yeah.
Andrew Palau (20:38):
Thanks for bringing us together, Daniel. This Is great. Thank you for being on the evangelism podcast. I appreciate it. Keep going, tune in.
Evangelist Coach Daniel King (20:46):
Thanks so much. Listening to the evangelism podcast today, our ministry is supported by people like you, who help us go to the nations to preach the gospel? Our goal is every soul. It only costs us an average of about $1 for every person. We’re able to tell about Jesus. And so could you do me a favor, go to my website, king ministries.com and become a partner with us for as little as $1 a month, you can start to partner with king ministries and help us lead at least one person to Jesus every single month. Imagine for $1, you can start a party in heaven every single month. So right now, go to king ministries.com and partner with us and help us to preach the gospel to those who need to hear the gospel. The most, the least reached people in the world. Also, I’d like to ask you to go to apple podcasts and give the evangelism podcast a five star review. Your positive review will help other people find this podcast who are excited about evangelism. Thank you so much. And God bless you
Evangelism Podcast Host (22:04):
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.