by Eddie General, Pastor of the Filipino-Amer Greater Seattle Seventh-day Adventist Church
Two years ago, Arnel, who is one of my Filipino church members, introduced me to Yolanda as his fiancée. She is a Christian and attending one of the protestant churches in California where she came from. A few months later the two married in California. A month after their marriage, Yolanda moved to Seattle to live with her husband there.
From time to time she would attend church with Arnel. She was nice, although I could tell that she wasn’t ready for any Bible study that would prepare her for church membership. Being Hispanic, she gradually began to feel at home with the Filipino culture in the church. The church members began get to know her and soon friendly conversations were taking place between her and other members.
I made sure to greet her whenever she came to our church and at times I asked her a few questions about her family as well as her spiritual walk with God. After a year I sensed that she was still closely connected to her protestant church in California. I had prayed for her ever since Arnel first introduced her to me. The church family also began praying for her that she would be open to Bible studies.
Then one day, she came to the church one Sabbath and gave me a great surprise. She told me that she’s ready to join the church and that she wants to be rebaptized. What a day of rejoicing that Sabbath was. I could tell that God was actively working in her heart for a number of months. I believe that God has been also answering the prayers of His people. The change in her life was gradual but it’s miraculous, nonetheless. From that Sabbath on, she began to attend the church regularly.
The following Sabbath I got her started on the Amazing facts Bible Study Guides, We met and discussed what she had been learning from the Bible through the lessons. It was evident to me that she was just absorbing all the new truths that she had been learning.
The Sabbath before the recent evangelistic meetings that we had, she had more good news for me. She and Arnel told me that she is pregnant. I rejoiced with them and had a prayer of celebration right there and then. Arnel, jokingly, said that when she gets baptized after the evangelistic meetings, it’s not just her who is getting baptized, but the baby within her as well.
On October 18. 2014, Yolanda was baptized with 9 other new members. I told the church family, during the presentation of the baptismal candidates, that God is growing our church spiritually though conversion and biologically through new babies. We have been praising God because He is still in the business of changing lives.