As we reported earlier this month, a pair of survivors of the deadly Pulse nightclub shooting in 2016 was set to bring “Freedom March” to Orlando with a powerful message of God’s abundant grace and mercy offered to anyone who will turn from their sin and follow Him.
This event is a follow-up to last year’s Freedom March in Washington DC, that Elizabeth Johnston, the Activist Mommy, was honored to attend and speak at. We are so excited to see this Spirit-filled movement continuing on!
Although the event was preceded by a fair amount of pro-LGBT pushback from those who equate the gospel message of Freedom March with spiritual abuse and “conversion therapy,” Life Site reports that the rally witnessed a massive turnout of people whose lives have been changed by Christ.
Life Site reports:
For over four hours on a brutally hot, sunny Florida afternoon, one after another took the stage to declare freedom from their former ‘identity’ as ‘gay’ or ‘trans. ’ And this happened through a real, personal experience purposefully turning away from the empty promises of the world and to the person of Jesus Christ.
At the start of the rally, held at Lake Eola Park, just a five-minute drive from Pulse Nightclub, shooting survivor Luis Ruiz corrected the mainstream narrative about the ex-gay movement.
“This is not conversion therapy,” proclaimed Ruiz to the cheers of the crowd. “This is not electrotherapy. This is not shock therapy.”
“This is all the Holy Spirit,” he added. “This is not a gay to straight thing: This is a lost to saved thing.”
Amen!! We’re not after mere conversion, we’re after revival!
“Their definition of conversion therapy is not our definition of conversion,” Ruiz told Life Site.
“Change is possible,” said Angel Colon, a fellow Pulse Nightclub survivor. “Freedom in Christ is true, and it’s real, and it can happen. If it can happen to me, it can happen to anyone.”
“Jesus wants your heart,” Colon continued. “He doesn’t just want your (sexual) identity. He wants everything of you.”
Several other Freedom March attendees shared their powerful testimonies that day.
Former lesbian activist Charlene Cothran told Life Site that she is proud to “stand with her brothers and sisters from across the country and show the entire world that we are free from homosexuality.”
“In a world and in a culture where people believe that can’t happen,” Cothran said, “we are the evidence, and that’s what I represent.”
“We taught people ‘gay theology’ through the pages of my publication,” she added, recalling the day the Holy Spirit convicted her of her rebellion. “The Lord said, ‘Look around you. This is leading people to destruction. Look at the generation who’s coming behind you,’ and conviction fell upon me like never before on that day.”
“I gave the Lord a complete and total ‘Yes,’” declared Cothran.
“There are so many people that are saying … ‘my convictions are not to pursue a gay life,’ said Ken Williams, who traveled from California to attend the rally. “There are thousands of people like that who are looking for help.”
Williams, a former homosexual who is now a married father of four, worked with Elizabeth Woning to co-found Equipped to Love, a ministry that helps others down the path of abandoning their sexual sin.
“Our stories are that God met us and led us out of that life, into great fulfillment,” Williams told Life Site. “So I stopped being suicidal, after I found encouragement to leave that life… And so that’s all we’re doing. The people that are coming and asking ‘Is there any encouragement for me to leave [homosexuality]?’ We’re saying, ‘Absolutely, that happened for us.’”
Remembering the fateful night when he was trampled in the chaos of the Pulse shooting, Luis Ruiz called the attack a “tragic event, but the Lord used it for good… Now I am sharing the love of Jesus.”
“People are being radically changed,” Ruiz said. “Not just a little change. They want Jesus.”
The left wants us to believe that people like Ruiz, Colon, and all the Freedom Marchers don’t exist. Share this message far and wide to show the world that Jesus is mighty to save any sinner!
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