During my earliest years, I was raised by my Catholic family. We attended Catholic services on special occasions such as Easter, Christmas, and Masses. My life was changed forever when my parents filed for divorce.
As a teen, my cousins recruited me into a criminal street gang. I longed for a sense of belonging to a community and I thought the gang would help me with that. The police arrested me for domestic violence, violating curfew, and possession of drugs. My thoughts at that time were like, “Am I willing to kill, steal, and intimidate anyone for my gang? Am I willing to do time in jail for my gang?”
My attorney worked on my case, helping me to get reduced sentence. Because of my behavior, the court decided to give me probation for two years. I had to meet certain requirements for the duration of probationary period. The probation was lifted once I met all requirements.
One Saturday afternoon in 1988, three men from the Deaf ministry of Falls Baptist Church in Menomonee Falls, WI visited my house. The Deaf ministry director, Frank Rasmussen, showed me the Gospel from the Bible. I finally understood that Jesus loved me and died on the Cross for my sins, and that through His blood, my sins could be forgiven. I was burdened in my heart and was conscious of my sins. That afternoon I confessed my sins and asked Jesus Christ to come into my life as my Savior. No longer did I worry about whether I was left behind or not. What a change the Lord made in my life! I am now zealous for the things of God, God’s Word, and His work!
I was a member of Falls Baptist Church from 1991 to 2005. I am thankful for Pastor Wayne Van Geldren who taught me so much about God and using practical Biblical applications in my life. I worked with the Deaf ministry, Deaf Teen ministry, and the van ministry.
In 2005, I surrendered my life to Holy Spirit’s call to full time ministry. I did not know what the Lord wanted me to do, but I freely submitted to His control and followed His guidance in preparation of His service. My family and I moved to Maryland and transferred our membership to Hampshire View Baptist Deaf Church. I enrolled at Capital Baptist Deaf College and graduated with a degree in Pastoral Studies in 2013. I became an associate pastor of Youth ministry. When I look back on the past years, I can see how God shaped me into the man I am today. He changed my heart and my desires to match His desires. I can also see how the trials strengthened my faith as God brought me through each one.
I hope my testimony is a blessing to you. More than that, I pray it will help you come to the saving knowledge of my wonderful Savior while you still have a chance.