Patrick’s Salvation and Calling Testimony
I grew up in a very unstructured environment. No father, drugs and alcohol, welfare and other issues. Math and science gave me the structure, predictability and rules I craved. But our school systems teach that to really do well, to really be smart, you had to start with the understand that there is no god. I wanted to be smart and special so I completely bought into the idea. Except I kept running into issues where science and logic could not provide me with adequate answers. One day, I came to a scientific fact that I could not look at as just random chance or statistical luck. I can take you to the exact place where God became real to me and I started to believe in Him. When my wife and I were counseling with her pastor, he asked me if I was saved. I told him about how I came to believe in God and he said, “Ok, but are you saved?” I repeated my story to him and he said, “Ok, but are you saved? Because I can’t marry you if you’re not saved.” So I told him, “Yes, I’m saved” and we got married. At that point in time, I had no idea what Salvation was and because people often ask leading questions when it comes to salvation, that was my salvation testimony for my entire time in the Army as well as for many years after that.
A missionary to the US military in Germany came through our church. I went up to him to tell him thank you for what he did. A missionary had been there for my wife and I when we were in Germany and I personally knew how great the need. Except when I went to talk to him, I couldn’t get out any words. I was so overcome with emotions that I couldn’t talk. I spoke with my Pastor about this and some other things in my life that were leading me to believe I might be called to preach. He suggested I make no decisions but take some Bible college classes to see where that led. As I got ready for college, God was working on my heart. One day while out door-knocking with my Pastor, my Pastor started asking me some very pointed questions about my salvation. I admitted I didn’t think I was saved and finally, actually settled it by asking Christ into my heart instead of just God.
While in Bible College and after graduation, I knew I wanted to work with the military in some form. I candidated at a church near a large military base, looked into a serviceman’s center near another and numerous other options, but each time God told me no. I eventually came to the place in my life where I told God that if all I was going to be allowed to do was what I had already been doing and to raise my daughter as a second generation Christian in a good church, then I would do it to the best of my ability and be happy doing it. It was when I let go of what I wanted to do that God gave me my heart’s desire. The very same missionary came back through our church and after counseling with him, my Pastor and several other people, my wife and I put our application into Baptist International Missions, Inc. to be missionaries to the American Military in Germany. In less than 6 months from the time I let go of what I wanted to do, God had given it back to me and turned my burden into His calling for my life.
I grew up in a Christian home and attended a Southern Baptist Church in Radcliff, KY. At the age of 11, I made a profession of faith. I continued to go to that church until I married my husband, who was a soldier in the Army. Six months after our wedding, we got orders for Germany where we learned about Independent Baptist. I still claimed my profession of faith at the age of 11 as my salvation testimony. It wasn’t until we got out of the military, moved to Mississippi and started attending Bethel Baptist Church that I realized my need for salvation. In May 2004 my pastor, Dr. Ron Westmoreland, was preaching a convicting salvation message and after battling doubts about my previous profession for several weeks, I realized I wasn’t truly saved. On that Sunday morning in May, I walked the aisle and trusted Jesus as my Saviour.
Alana has been in church her whole life. She has shown a love and gift for working with children that has allowed her to be one of the youngest unofficial bus workers in our Church. She received Christ as her Saviour at 6 years old during our Public School revival. She had shown interest in salvation many times before that but never an understanding of her sin and it’s penalties. It was always more about what her friends had done and baptism than salvation. Finally all she cared about was getting saved.