Guest / Limited Access /
The Ultimate Wave
Gregschneider.com

Bryan Jennings wasn't any different from many other surfers who grew up on the California coast—on the beach and hitting the waves by day, partying and getting laid at night. He occasionally attended church "for all the wrong reasons, namely free pizza and pretty girls," but when he met Jesus at age 18, his life turned around in a hurry. He cleaned up his act and his game, and was soon surfing professionally. But what he enjoyed most was telling people about his faith and riding the Ultimate Wave.

At age 20, while attending Point Loma Nazarene University, Jennings hosted a Christian surfing camp and called it Walking On Water (WOW). Ten kids showed up. Now, 15 years later, WOW is an internationally known ministry. Its summer camps have reached thousands, and its mission trips and outreach events take the Good News to surfers around the world.

Today, WOW is best known for its films, which combine surfing footage with music and powerful testimonies to reach a global audience. Jennings, 36, estimates that three million people have seen the movies, and says thousands have come to Christ as a result of the ministry.

Question & Answer

Where did the idea for Walking On Water begin?

My first year as a believer (at 18), I was in the Lord and in the world, trying to live both ways. My best friend said I couldn't keep living the way I used to; no one had discipled me, and at first, I didn't understand. Finally, I realized I had to step it up, and I did. When I started having some success [as a pro surfer], kids were looking up to me, and I wanted to do something with that and with my faith. So I organized the first camp, and we've been going ever since.

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Support Christian thought journalism. Donate to our nonprofit ministry today.
From Issue:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
Also in this IssueThe Art of Glory
Subscriber Access Only The Art of Glory
Cape Cod's newly completed Church of the Transfiguration embodies the belief that beauty can nurture our communion with God.
RecommendedI Went From Fighting in a Cage to Living in a Hut
I Went From Fighting in a Cage to Living in a Hut
How an MMA fighter found Jesus—and discovered his calling in the Congo.
Trending‘Worst Year Yet’: The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Hardest to Be a Christian
‘Worst Year Yet’: The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Hardest to Be a Christian
Islamic extremism now has a rival, according to 2017 World Watch List.
Editor's PickCompassion Has 'Very Little Hope' for India, Sets Deadline to Shut Down Sponsorships
Compassion Has 'Very Little Hope' for India, Sets Deadline to Shut Down Sponsorships
About 145,000 children have already lost its assistance with food, education, and health care.
Christianity Today
The Ultimate Wave
hide thisOctober October

In the Magazine

October 2010

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.