Faith Story : January 25,2009

I was asked by Pastor Abet Nazario to tell how Powerhouse helped our family during our transfer-so I read this short testimony on January 25, 2009, one week we were accepted as regular members:

 

Our lives are filled with stories. So I think this is a good time to introduce my family and I to you. And to let you know what you mean to us.

 

I accepted the Lord, with dengue H-fever, 40-42 C , Oct 20, 1981-1st year college, UST Hospital-through witness of Lolo and a nurse-angel. I was immersed at Cubao Baptist Church –under the Church of the Risen Lord, Easter 1982.

 

My wife Mabel , accepted the Lord in 1989 through the ministry of Pasay City alliance church. She was also immersed the same year.

 

In 1982 I became a member of a Christian Reformed Church-Bread from Heaven Christian Fellowship, Paranaque. Get Married in 1993.

Moved to San Pedro Laguna, became a member of Presbyterian Christian church-later named “Jesus Lord of All Presbyterian Church”. Where we served for 15 years.

 

June 2008, while I was reading or looking for a different material in the Internet came to an article about the new covenant basis for believer’s baptism especially regarding the following verses:

 

Jeremiah 31:31-3 4 31″Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah —32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the LORD.33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34 No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”

 

And John 1:12-13 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

 

And Galatians 3: 6-7 6 just as Abraham “believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” 7 Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham.

 

My children were all baptized as infants to apply the covenant promises made by God to Abraham- as he circumcised his offspring and household-so should I baptized my offspring-even if it is only I who was saved. That’s how we interpret this passage in Acts 2:39 39 For the promise is to you and to your children…

 

And how wrong I was –for the last 26 years of my Christian life! And how I put my children in harm ways. There they were considered as not unbelievers and yet not as believers. They have a semi status in the covenant. I was afraid of the salvation for my children.

 

But my former pastor did not share the same enthusiasm for the said discovery.

 

I will pass over these matters, which happened between the elders of the church and us. Suffice to say that –with deep sorrow, we left our church of 15 years and started to look for another.

 

For your peace of mind-We did not started a faction, a group or a party spirit when we left them. Much as I want to share the truth- some things cannot be easily shared with ordinary members and new attendees. We also have to abide by the decision of the church elders.

 

So by July- August 2008, I found myself at the age 43 years old, seeking AGAIN for a home church.

 

Except for a few church mates, like the one I introduce to you last Christmas caroling, most started avoiding me.

 

And the one that hurt me the most is when they also started avoiding my wife Belle too. They did not even try to visit us in our house.

 

casting crowns

 

 

At my age I realized –that people you have been with for 15 years could easily forget you.

 

In the song “who am I?” of Casting Crowns which I first heard here, though not really that new –I really felt these lines:

 

“I am a flower quickly fading,

Here today and gone tomorrow,

A wave tossed in the ocean,

A vapor in the wind”.

 

Madali pala tayong makalimutan. Sandali lang.

 

I came here first through Saturday afternoon inquiry. The worship team was practicing. I just asked if this was a Baptist church.

I returned here after 3 weeks. Almost did not return.

 

The first 3 Sundays I was here the message that spoke to me was one of the illustrations of Pastor Abet (I don’t know if he still can remember it) where he said that the sheep –gets tired and lost and have to get back home to rest. That simple illustration spoke to me. It is not clever illustration-it is simple and Jesus called me through it.

 

We try to linger here for a while –since we can be anonymous here –without being bothered to be close to anyone as fast as possible. It is not easy to get to know each other-when you are not yet ready for another church relationships again.

 

We also came back here again and again because of the music:

 

We heard Him in your voices: As I said before that your voices are very good-it is not meant as a compliment-it is just a plain observation-In fact kung minsan I don’t want to mention it kasi baka parang hamog na niglang mawala pag nasambit mo na. Kaya lang baka di ninyo alam na we appreciate you a lot.

 

That you had helped us. In your singing I understood this ;

 

“Who am I?

That the Lord of all the earth,

Would care to know my name,

Would care to feel my hurt”.

 

I really don’t know how you did minister to me in my pain- ang theory ko lang : Maybe during August to November, some of you are also in pain, lonely, or in doubt and yet keeps in holding on-and tried to stand here and minister to us-and sing His Songs. And so your pain resonated with my pain. Our pain. That is where I heard his voice.

 

You are God’s treasures in earthen vessels-or jars of clay. God displays his strength in your weakness.

 

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And you ministered to me, to us –my family.

 

I always tell my children and my wife that they should come early since the first part of the message is in the music.

 

I am still in pain. Yet I have to strong for my children. Sometimes it’s not easy going to church. I just wish to stay home and just listen to music and read books and forget –as they did. I have not fully recovered. Yet I hope.

 

Some say “everybody’s broken” – I still feel some hole in my heart –that still aches. You observe that when I hesitate. Sometimes I think that I can no longer fulfill those things I told my Lord when I was still young. I already feel the weight of the years. Pacencia na po. Please be patient with me. Anyway, here are my children to replace me

 

I’ll just read some lines from that song again:

 

“That the voice that calmed the sea,

Would call out through the rain,

And calm the storm in me.

Not because of who I am,

But because of what you’ve done.

Not because of what I’ve done,

But because of who you are.”

 

Salamat po sa inyong lahat . Salamat po Panginoon.

 

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