Cross Making Ministry
My name is Johnny Blackmon and I have a cross making ministry. I’m from Visalia, California. I’m the father of three amazing children, Cooper, Trinity, and Johnny. I’m currently working part-time as a Psychotherapist at a children’s clinic. I recently started working in ministry and love the ways God uses us to minister his message. I was raised by my grandmother, a faithful Christian, until I was 11 years old. She exposed me to the Gospel of Jesus at a young age. By age 12, I went to live with my aunt and uncle, and eventually found myself in the foster care, juvenile detention and state prison systems.
Through hardships, I became interested in helping others and obtained college degrees which allowed me to become a counselor. In time, I married and built a family. But the windy storms of life eventually hit hard and I stumbled, learning that self-reliance and worldly solutions are not the way. I found myself baffled and broken after going through a rough separation/divorce and potentially losing my children (my little angels). The grief I experienced was overwhelming to the point at which it seemed coping was hopeless. I was much like the lame man who couldn’t see or walk on his own. Self-reliance proved to be a losing battle and I was defeated feeling spiritually dead inside.
Christ answered my cry for help on December 24th, 2017. With no hope left, I went to God out of desperation and the miracle began to unfold. The old me died and by his grace, I rose up a new man. Salvation! My new faith was unlike anything I had experienced before. I tapped into his loving and powerful existence. The Spirit has delivered me from problems of chronic depression and alcohol/drug addictions. God’s love and his promises in the Bible have given me freedom, courage, wisdom, and strength I never had before! I seek out knowledge regularly by reading his word, fellowshipping/worshipping in church and ministry, studying at Christian Leaders Institute and sharing on CLI networks. These tools have exposed me to a walk of life that provides my true purpose and a greater sense of direction.
I’ve gotten involved by using my talents to serve the Lord and help people in my personal life and community. One of my talents is landscaping and I’ve recently discovered a talent in woodworking. My friend from church called me one day and said she had dreamt about me handing out big crosses on one of the busiest streets in our city. I did not take it very seriously as I had never made a cross before. After all, where would I gather the time or materials?
A few weeks later a man randomly dropped a pile of old wood at my house. I decided I would make my friend a cross for her birthday the following week. I made the cross the best I could which did not actually turn out to be too difficult and presented it to her. Soon after, my Facebook account lit up as requests for the crosses began to pour in for my cross making ministry. People were asking if I’d sell them and how much would I charge. I prayed about the crosses and remembered the purpose of making them was to honor other people and spread God’s message. I decided not to charge but would take donations for resources instead.
I’ve personally made over 45 crosses in my cross making ministry and the list continues to grow each day. Complete strangers are requesting them and I never imagined a small act might touch so many people. I have invited other men to get involved and fellowship if they’d like to learn to make crosses and grow in faith in Jesus. We regularly look to award crosses to ambassadors or servants in the ministry, who lead others to the light, in our cross making ministry. And just as important, we try to present crosses to people going through hard times in life to help lift up their spirits (Jesus walks with them).
We pray with people and hope that the crosses will bless their hearts with a reminder about how Jesus sacrificed it all for them. We named the cross making ministry “Men of Crosses”. Today some of the crosses are being sold in a Christian Bible Store, which is located on the busiest street in our city. The money from the crosses is used to buy materials and one day fund a restoration home for single mothers in Visalia.
I’ve also started a business to increase community service which already employs two men who are growing in their faith. I teach landscaping and we fellowship as we seek to share God’s message of love and freedom in Christ. This business has been going two months and we are flooded with referrals, the name is “Johnny B. Good Lawn Service.”
The Lord saved me and would save anyone who’s willing to have faith. I feel he’s brought me through the firing lines to find wisdom and carry his message to the lost. I’ve surrendered to the Lord so he can guide my feet and my thoughts daily. I feel a calling in my life like never before. I read the Bible and seek out his purpose daily. As Paul said, I feel his spirit inside me. I mostly identify with the word Pastor or Minister, as I follow Christ and feel compelled to share the truth about God’s unconditional love whenever I can.
I would like to continue my education at the Christian Leaders Institute because I’d like to grow as a servant of Christ and unlock additional talents and opportunities to serve him. By receiving a scholarship to attend CLI, I’ll get good guidance that will enable me to be a stronger vessel to spread the Gospel of Jesus. I thank you for the opportunity to learn about the Lord and new ways to help others. Peace and blessings to all in Jesus name!
Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.