A businessman whose historic family brand made its mark on the automotive landscape, Barry Meguiar has journeyed beyond car care to plant the seeds of faith through Ignite America.
Ignite America is a Gospel outreach organization that aims to invigorate and empower individuals to share their faith in Jesus Christ. In Meguiar’s view, evangelism is more than a mission—it’s a movement, a call to bring hearts, minds, and souls “closer to Jesus,” igniting flames for faith. Ignite America coaches Christians that everyday evangelism need not be daunting but can be approached with joy and authenticity.
For Meguiar, the catalyst came in 1973. Meguiar was the third-generation head of the family business, Meguiar’s, Inc., which was established in 1901 selling car wax to auto body shops. A regular churchgoer, Meguiar recalls a lack of joy despite adhering to “what seemed like the right practices.”
At the 50th anniversary celebration of Meguiar’s church in California, Meguiar encountered keynote speaker Herbert Ellingwood, the legal affairs secretary for Governor Ronald Reagan. Ellingwood’s testimony about discovering joy through sharing his faith deeply resonated with Meguiar. From then on, Meguiar and his wife, Karen, committed to intertwining the practice of sharing their faith with the search for genuine joy.
“For decades, Karen and I have been having the time of our lives sharing our faith,” said Meguiar. “After that event with Ellingwood, I instantly knew I needed to create a ministry to help other people understand how easy evangelism is.”
Three years later, a colleague’s insightful observation that “your business is your pulpit” propelled Meguiar into full-time ministry while remaining chief operating officer of the family automotive business. This marked the establishment of Ignite America in 2000.
“The theme of our ministry is to share the Gospel with everyone, every day, to move them closer to Jesus,” said Meguiar. “And we help people understand how easy it is to do that.”
According to Meguiar, there has never been a more opportune time to demystify the process and gain confidence in sharing your faith.
“80 percent of Americans today are living in fear and looking for God,” said Meguiar. “The fields are ripe for harvest.”
“The time is now to wake up the church,” Meguiar added. “The stage has been set for revival.”
Earlier this year, Meguiar released his book “Ignite Your Life: Defeat Fear with Effortless Faith.” The book’s core message is an encouragement to Christians to get off the sidelines and let evangelism ignite their lives with purpose.
My friend Barry Meguiar of @AmericaIgnite recently released his book “Ignite Your Life” encouraging Christians to ignite their faith.
Love seeing faithful servant leaders like Barry at @NRBConvention.
— Troy Miller (@NRBCEO) May 25, 2023
The book’s subtitle, “Defeat Fear with Effortless Faith,” addresses the prevalence of fear in today’s culture, even among Christians. Meguiar underlines the importance of wholehearted faith and trust in God. He encourages believers to focus on loving God, honoring Him, and living for His purpose, asserting that these practices lead to a joy-filled life unburdened by fear.
Barry reflected on his life’s most poignant challenges: “I lost my 49-year-old daughter. I had my business ripped away from me.”
Despite these heartbreaking losses, “I never lost my joy,” Meguiar said. His conviction stems from living for a higher purpose, one that transcends personal aspirations: “When you live for Him, it ignites your life.”
Meguiar expressed his appreciation for NRB’s role in bringing Christian communicators together to collaborate and cast a vision for the future. NRB’s commitment to unity and focus on the power of Christian communications leaves Meguiar optimistic about the future, he said.
“It’s a ministry of NRB to bring Christian communicators together [as] iron sharpens iron, and to encourage each other and learn, inspire each other and work as a force, not as individuals,” said Meguiar. “NRB encompasses so many different ministries and organizations with different voices and priorities that should and can impact our society together as one voice.”
“NRB is our home,” said Meguiar. “It’s where we come together and join together and pray together.”
Ignite America has been an NRB member since 2013 and Meguiar is the recipient of the 2019 Billy Graham Award for Excellence in Christian Communications, presented to an individual or organization that effectively and creatively uses multiple electronic media technologies, while maintaining fidelity to the message of love, redemption, and hope found in Scripture. To learn more about Ignite America, visit www.igniteamerica.com