I had a chance to go watch an NBA game in Las Vegas with a friend last year. On the night of the game we decided to go for a prayer walk along the strip where we encountered a man holding a giant cross on the corner of a bustling intersection of pedestrians passing by. His name was Koosha, and he had recently surrendered his life to Christ. He’d been on that corner nightly for a few months before we ran into him. During those few months he was physically assaulted to the point of passing out, asked to leave the corner by local bar and club owners and received repeated threats by nearby street entertainers and random pedestrians. Even when we arrived that night, people passing by were yelling all sorts of profanities. Those are the types of reactions the cross tends to get in a place like Vegas but sometimes these aren’t the only kinds of reactions.
The cross has also drawn people to Koosha to ask for prayer and healing. One night a homeless man came to Koosha with something on his leg that had been eating away at it for a long time. Koosha prayed over the man and he was healed and accepted Christ upon being healed. On other nights, people have seen the cross and have come to Christ after hearing the gospel from Koosha. He’s had a chance to pray over dozens of people in dire straits right there on the strip. Whether the cross is met with resistance or surrender, the reaction is usually quite strong on the Vegas strip.
My friend and I sensed some of that the night we first met Koosha. I felt compelled to pray that God would send angels to establish a foothold in that corner and that He would expand Koosha’s territory. During our prayer I could sense a ring of protection around us. Immediately after we prayed people began walking around us as if to avoid us—especially those trying to speak out against God. Their voices became very faint and it was like we had a bubble of protection around us. Then we blessed Koosha and went on our way.
A few nights ago, I had a chance to see Koosha again as I was in Vegas for a tradeshow. This time I took a different friend on a prayer walk along the strip. After a short time, we turned the same corner where I first encountered Koosha, except this time we encountered a group of five people holding signs that read “Trust Jesus.” Another sign read “Jesus says I am the way the truth and the life.” They were playing worship music right in that busy corner. I was blessed to see that God had indeed expanded His territory, and shortly after we got there, Koosha arrived with his cross. After greeting him, Koosha shared with me that since the last time we met, it’s been relatively peaceful and non-violent. In fact, other people started showing up on that corner to help preach the Gospel–among them a 12-year-old boy. People have also been supporting his ministry financially, though he never asks for money, and he continues to be out in that corner six nights a week. May God continue to hold and expand that territory.