We would like to share with you two reasons for great rejoicing. Recently, we had the honor of
seeing two precious souls obey what the Scriptures command to make Christ the Lord of their lives. We give many thanks to God for these opportunities.
The first one was the obedience of Jaquelin (pronounced Jacqueline) Ramirez, Byron’s second cousin. Her conversion came as a result of a casual conversation that Byron was having with her and with her brother, Raul. They were visiting in our home with their mom, Patricia Ramirez, who is already a Christian and assembles with the church in Limon, Zone 18 of the capital city. Patricia had mentioned that Jaquelin and Raul were showing some disinterest in attending the assemblies. As Byron talked more about this with them, he realized that their problem was that they really had a misunderstanding of the Lord’s church and its relationship to Jesus. This led to a study on becoming a part of Christ and His body.
After about 1-1⁄2 hours of study, they were both presented with the Gospel, which caused them to face the fact that there major problem was their sin problem, but that the solution God had provided was Jesus. Jaquelin, who is 15 years old, had tears in her eyes by this time in the study. She was sure that she wanted to accept God’s offer of pardon through Jesus by being baptized for the remission of her sins. Raul, 13 years old, was less expressive, yet still moved by these truths. However, he did not feel he was ready to make such a serious commitment.
Tuesday is prayer night at Linda Vista. And, since the study took place on a Tuesday afternoon, by the time they were concluded, it was a good time to make our way to Linda Vista. We arrived, announced the good news to the brethren, and then Byron had the privilege of taking Jaquelin’s confession and baptizing her into Christ. What a wonderful experience!
The second was the baptism of Jasmine Ramos, a young lady whose family are members at Linda Vista. Her baptism came as a bit of a surprise to us, but it was apparently something that she and her family had already discussed. It was during a Sunday evening service at Linda Vista when she and her mom made known to Byron her decision. While he was in the back of the auditorium adjusting the microphone Jasmine and her mom, Miriam Ramos, were at the door of the lobby and waved for Byron to go to them. As he approached them, Jasmine, with a smile and a twinkle in her eyes asked if he would baptize her because she had made the decision to become a Christian. Byron felt greatly honored.
A few moments later, we remembered that Juan Jose, one of our members, had been cleaning the baptistery the night before. To do this he had to empty the baptistery, so we wondered if the water had come (it only comes every other day in Linda Vista) in order to fill the baptistery. After checking with Juan Jose, we were unpleasantly informed that the baptistery was empty! What a dilemma! A soul seeking redemption and no water in the baptistery! We would not give up so easily, however. After several calls, and after discussing it with Anibal, Juan Jose and others, the idea to call the Ramos and Garcia families came to mind. We used their home before when this situation occurred and it would be great to use it again. Adela Garcia answered the call and said they would immediately fill the tank (it is called a pila and used for holding water for their personal use). At the end of the sermon, Jasmine made her confession of faith and we explained what had occurred and what we would be doing. The reason for this explanation was that the members were giving Anibal a surprise birthday party that night, so we had to be careful not to spoil the surprise, but at the same time to give the needed attention to the one wanting to obey the Gospel. So, we explained that we would be taking Jasmine and her family to the house mentioned for the baptism. We piled the Ramos family in our car—all six of them—and made our way to the Ramos and Garcia home.
When we arrived, the members of four of the families who occupy this home were there eagerly waiting for us, with towels and clothes for Jasmine in case they were needed. We are thankful God provides. After the baptism, we took the William Ramos family back to Linda Vista and went on our way rejoicing! Of course, no one that night was probably rejoicing as much as Jasmine was!
Please pray for both of these two young sisters in Christ. Pray that they might grow spiritually and in their love for God. Jacqueline is assembling with the body in Limon, where her mom is a member. Jasmine is, of course, a member at Linda Vista, and it is good to see her in the new convert’s class that we teach every Sunday.
Thank you, beloved brethren and friends, for rejoicing with us because of these two additions to the Lord’s body here in Guatemala. Continue to pray for us and continue to be the encouragement that you always have been to us.
For the love of Christ,
To see the report with pictures of the baptisms, please go here.