DAVIS—Members of an Oklahoma motorcycle ministry are putting wheels to their faith by sharing their testimonies and the Gospel with campers at Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center throughout the summer. The F.A.I.T.H Riders arrive on their motorcycles each Friday at the youth encampment with the purpose of modeling to students how to share their testimony in three minutes and rewarding students who share their testimonies with a F.A.I.T.H Riders collector’s pin.
Bobby Shatto, State F.A.I.T.H. Riders Chaplain and pastor of Maud, First, explained that the evangelistic strategy of the Oklahoma chapters of F.A.I.T.H. Riders is sharing Jesus in three-minute testimonies.
“When I first learned about the riders, I thought, ‘Oh, I see evangelism all over this!’ Shatto explained. “We didn’t want our chapter to be a ‘supper run club,’ just meeting together then going to supper. My goal was to be evangelistic, so we practice our three-minute testimonies and share them wherever we go. I always tell people, ‘You don’t have to have a motorcycle to be a F.A.I.T.H. Rider, but you have to have Jesus as your Lord and Savior.’ That’s our passion, bragging on Jesus, how He’s changed lives—and we use motorcycles as ‘bait.’”
James Wilder, Pottawatomie-Lincoln director of missions, is a member of F.A.I.T.H Riders. He believes the ministry can be a direct line of connection between Falls Creek and the local church in Oklahoma.
“If I can bring people with me (as a F.A.I.T.H Rider) from the churches I know,” Wilder said, “they get to see what happens at Falls Creek on campus with the students and take it back to their communities.”
Each Friday at Falls Creek, the riders pitch a canopy tent, park their motorcycles in the plaza near the 1917 Café and talk to the students who come by to look at the bikes. The riders share their three-minute testimonies and encourage the students also to share their testimonies of how they came to know Christ as their Lord.
Students who share their stories are rewarded with a collectable F.A.I.T.H. Riders pin. Pin trading is a popular pastime at Falls Creek.
“We’ve been going to Falls Creek for about 10 years, and we have talked to a lot of students about the Gospel over the years,” Shatto explained. “We trade pins for testimonies. We give away about 400 pins every Friday. One week I remember we had between 16-19 (professions of faith in Christ).”
Vicki Phillips is the director of the Sunnylane F.A.I.T.H. Riders chapter at Del City, Sunnylane Southern. She shared another recent experience at Falls Creek connecting with campers.
“We had 16 F.A.I.T.H Riders (go to Falls Creek), and we had 13 kids (make professions of faith in Christ),” Phillips said. “I also talked to a parent, and as I was sharing a particularly dark part of my past, the mother said, ‘My daughter is going through that same thing right now.’ I was amazed how God put us together. It was just a God thing because nobody there knew about my past, and God put me with the right parent, the right person to pray with, to encourage not to give up on her kid. I can’t wait to go again. I am gassed up and ready to go back to Falls Creek to share the Gospel with more people.”
Wilder said, as an associational missionary, he believes the motorcycle ministry benefits the churches of his association. “(F.A.I.T.H Riders) has been an asset in a number of ways,” Wilder said. “It’s brought people to the table that normally wouldn’t come. I think there are a lot of people in every one of our churches who ride. They own a bike, but they don’t get to ride enough. This provides an outlet for them to do that but also to do it as an act of evangelism. I don’t think that’s an area that we can have too much of. We seem to be lacking in most of our congregations—direct personal evangelism.”
According to the F.A.I.T.H Riders website, the group is a national group of dedicated believers who are “committed to the cause of Christ and to sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ on and with their motorcycles to any who will listen.” There are chapters across the country, and any Southern Baptist church can start a chapter.
There are 77 chapters of F.A.I.T.H. Riders in Oklahoma who participate in a variety of mission trips, programs and organized excursions offered by the group, including mission trips to annual biker gatherings such as the Daytona Bike Week in Daytona, Fla., the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, S.D., and the Bikers, Blues and Barbeque Festival at Bricktown in Oklahoma City.
For more information about F.A.I.T.H Riders contact Bobby Shatto at ShattoBG@gmail.com.
‘F’ is for Forgiveness.
We cannot have eternal life and heaven without God’s forgiveness.
‘A’ is for Available.
Forgiveness is available for all, but it is not automatic.
‘I’ is for Impossible.
It is impossible for God to allow sin into heaven. It is also impossible to please God through our own actions.
‘T’ is for Turn.
Turn means to repent from sin and self to Christ only.
‘H’ is for Heaven.
Heaven is eternal life, here and now and in the hereafter but only through Christ. Forsaking all, I trust Him!