Shawn Bolz is a man with a prophetic gift, who is using his ability to hear from God to help others, including entertainers in Hollywood.
Efrem Graham sat down with the author at his home and studio in Burbank, California to hear about his mission.
EFREM: What’s the importance of prophecy in people’s lives?
SHAWN: I think we have this omnipresent God who is everywhere at once, and He is the only God who will have relationship, be present and connect with us right now, in the here and now.
Prophecy causes us to know that the God of all the universe, who is able to look at 7 point whatever billion people, is stepping into our moment and is saying, "I value you."
People have this experience where they completely deny it or they go, I’m going to allow myself to be changed by this great love from God.
EFREM: You are really big with ministering to people on the street—to people who unfortunately, to the rest of the world, are invisible. Why does that group touch your heart so much?
SHAWN: There’s things that God wants to do that He said He will always do. Isaiah 58 talks about loving the poor, loving the people who no one else sees. You can’t hear God’s heart without having compassion. You see what He sees. He’s looking at every act of injustice on the earth and He doesn’t turn His face away. He looks, and the closer you get to His heart you can’t help but see these kinds of things.
When you hear God’s voice, He actually breathes over issues in your heart and so for me, it’s been extreme people groups. We go to red-light districts, we go to prostitutes and pimps, we go to war zones and we are actively involved in war zone ministry. People look at me and go, "You live in Hollywood and you go to war zones?"
It’s like, yeah! You’ll see a level of who God is there that you can’t see anywhere else because the level of injustice is so strong, and I’m a junkie for that. I’m a junkie to hear God’s love do something in these impossible situations that only happens in those situations when you hear God’s voice.
EFREM: You feel and know that you are called to Hollywood. How would you describe that ministry and what God has called you to do here?
SHAWN: You know, when we moved here, I wasn’t going to start a church. I’ve given the church over to my best friend. For nine years, I was the senior pastor.
I heard when I first came here, "Shawn, I’m homeless in Hollywood, will you build me a home?" It felt like an orphanage for five years. It felt like a foster care system. The average person only lasts two years in Hollywood pursuing their dreams, and then they go home because it’s too hard. If they stay for longer than two years, there’s some baggage that happens because of how hard it is here.
When we came here, all I knew was the people, and loving them was my mission. I didn’t know how to build a structure around that, so we built a church, and it’s a beautiful church. In this phase, we’re mostly working with people to find their empowerment and who they really are so that they can go into it maybe before they come into their fullness. They can have a great sense of self-connection and God-connection so that they don’t make the same mistakes. We have a lot of older, seasoned people helping to pour into that, and it is a beautiful process to watch.