January 29, 2014
CENTRAL — Davey Blackburn, a Southern Wesleyan University religion and media communication graduate, founded Resonate Church with the mission of doing whatever it takes to see people in the Indianapolis area have a closer relationship with God.
Blackburn and his wife, Amanda, started with four people meeting in a living room just over a year ago. Since then, they have seen 70 people introduced to Christ as their personal savior.
As a member of the Warriors Baseball Team, Blackburn developed a passion for evangelism as he shared his faith with numerous teammates. While he was a student at Southern Wesleyan, Blackburn helped start Ignite, a ministry he described as “for athletes, organized by athletes.”
“I played baseball on scholarship at SWU and it allowed me to have lots of time with guys who didn’t know Jesus and were at the school purely for education and athletics,” Blackburn said, adding that seven players gave their lives to Jesus.
He feels that this ministry helped usher in a spiritual awakening among student-athletes at the university.
“In the first year of Ignite’s existence, 40 athletes came to know Jesus as their personal savior,” Blackburn said, noting also how the Ignite experience was a major factor in developing his leadership skills.
“One of the most influential classes for me was Dave Tolan’s Evangelism and Discipleship class,” Blackburn said. “In that class, we read a number of books, including Bill Hybels’ ‘Just Walk Across the Room’ and Erwin McManus’ ‘An Unstoppable Force.’ These books, along with the class discussion and outside assignments, really helped shape my passion for the local church and seeing people far from God come to know Jesus.”
After graduating from Southern Wesleyan, Blackburn spent four years on the staff of NewSpring Church in Anderson as a youth leader. NewSpring was a springboard for Resonate, providing him with personal coaching and financial backing for the new church.
Blackburn’s brother Jonathan and sister-in-law Tessa Morrison Blackburn are also Southern Wesleyan graduates, as are several of his relatives.