Skip to main content

Celebrating a Life Changing Moment

Today is the ten year anniversary of one of the biggest, and the most important moments in my life. Honestly, one could go as saying this moment helped shaped and provide the very foundation of the person I have become, and will continue to transform into as I grow older. 

Ten years ago, on August 4th, 2012, yours truly was baptized and declared to the world my intention to follow my Lord and savior, Jesus Christ. 

As with most baptisms of new Christians, or those who waited before the moment was right like myself, I was asked to give a brief speech, a testimony if you will, before my baptism. Traditionally, I decided to share with those who were in attendance a little bit of my life, and what brought me to that very stage on that day.

Today, in celebrating this10th anniversary, and continuing to live a transparent life through this little blog called Dome Pondering, I've decided to shared with you the text of that very testimony. 

It is not much, as at seventeen, I was lucky enough to find and accept Christ at the early age of twelve. Therefore, I warn you DP devotee, it is not as climactic or interesting as some who have lived quite the life before finally doing business with God. However, reading and looking back on that time, the text itself serves as a template for exactly what change my life forever. 

The seventeen years I lived before that moment surely cannot compare to the ten that followed to this point in terms of experience, decisions, temptations, trials, and tribulations. That's clearly obvious in any individual's life - unless you're some type of child star. Nonetheless, at that point, sharing such a personal issue at such a young age was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. Among the many, many, public speeches I've made through High School, College, College debates, Grad School, and now my professional life, this one still remains at the top. 

And today, revealing this to the world is still just as hard. 

However, ultimately, it is in celebration of a changed life, a triumphant moment, and most of all, a loving God. 

Without further adieu, below is the testimony of yours truly given on August 4th, 2002. I hope you enjoy. And most of all, I hope it somehow sparks interests of faith for you as well. 

I grew up as a kid being taught about how good God is and what he did. I believed it, but never really understood it completely. I was very arrogant and self-serving in everything that I did in my life. Whether it was school or life, I did what it took to make sure I got ahead. I made sure I got what I wanted. Despite my actions, and like most people, I thought I was on my way to heaven because I was a "good person" and hey, I didn't kill anyone!

However, in January of 1998, a friend and I were walking by this very church when we noticed a few guys playing basketball. While watching eagerly and in admiration, a man who we will later become close with named "Mr. V" approached us and invited us in. After playing basketball, a little football, and some pool, everyone made their way into an indoor basketball court of the church. It was here where my friend and I began to wonder what we got ourselves into. Little that we knew, the meeting was a weekly boys church youth group. Mr. V talked about life, current and the future, death, and the question of whether we knew where we were going after we died. 

It was a really free and open conversation among the hundred or so of us ranging from twelve to twenty-five.  Questions and numerous topics were discussed. 

From what I remember, the discussion, lesson, and his message were so powerful, that many were scared of leaving and possibly dying that night. 

Over the next few weeks I attended the youth groups regularly. Surprisingly I began to attend for the lessons and the discussions more than for the games. 

On a Friday afternoon in April of 1998, I rushed home after baseball practice to attend the seven o'clock youth group. During Mr. V's message, he challenged us to speak with him if we were really serious about what he spoke of. After the youth group, I stayed, along with others, and spoke with him. Firing question after question. Receiving answer after answer. 

It was then I realized I was not as good as I thought I was and that simply "believing" was not enough. In fact, I knew at that point that I was not good enough before a perfect God, and that something most people scoff at and offer up as usual "religious" stuff, that Jesus was indeed the way, the truth, and the life. That night I decided to give my heart, life, and will over to God. 

Shortly after, I regularly attended Sunday servies with my parents, and this time made it a point to actually not sleep or daydream through them. A couple months later, I began volunteering, and before you knew it, I was working here as the media supervisor overlooking the very power point presentations you see on the screen, the lights we use on this stage, and managing the sound for the awesome band that we have every Sunday morning. 

In the year 2000, I gave up playing baseball on my H.S. team to pursue this part of my life through further missions and projects that have further changed my life forever. I focused all of my attention on my new love, Jesus Christ. 

As opposed to living for myself and going through life claiming to "believe", I now live for Jesus, and I now know for sure in my heart that I live to see His will go forward. 

Recently Read Posts

Sunday Sundown Rundown - 5/22/22

3 Up 1. NY Times Investigative Series on Haiti - The history of Haiti is such a complex (and unfortunate) one. Really, it's a story that goes untold, specifically for the context of how the country is viewed. From being forced to pay operations to enslavers (yeah, you read that right), to so many other historical setbacks - including American interventions - the nation's history is so well laid out in this latest NY Times piece. I urge you to give it a read.  2. Equal Pay for US Women's Soccer Team - Kudos to US Soccer on coming around to giving the USWNT their due - equal pay for prize money from the World Cup. It's a start, and more importantly, it's a push forward for women's sports that do in fact push the needle in comparison, or more so, to their male counterparts.  3. Kate McKinnon - Random "UP" here, but I'm doing it anyway...A few SNL usuals are rumored to be walking away, including Kate McKinnon. The show obviously doesn't carry the

Sunday Sundown Rundown - 4/10/22

3 Up 1. Ketanji Brown Jackson - The new Supreme Court Justice is a win for black and brown girls everywhere. Representation matters.  2. Women's College Basketball Ratings - I'm giving the women's tournament its due as it garnered the highest television ratings ever for the national championship game in eighteen years. And that was head-to-head with the Grammys! Spare me the "women's sports don't draw" tired narrative. Invest in women's sports, period.  3. Baseball Returns - Sure, the sport bothered fans over the winter with its ugly and insulting labor spat. However, it's back, and that's cool.  3 Down 1. Ukraine Images - Unfortunately, I had to put the ongoing acts in Ukraine back in the tops spot. Have you seen some of the images coming out of the country? For me, it was the image of parents writing children's information (i.e. names, details of eating habits, etc...) on their backs - on their backs! - in anticipation of being separated

Sunday Sundown Rundown - 5/15/22

3 Up 1. California Church Heroes - It's soooooooo weird that the top spot is a result of something so horrific as our ongoing domestic terrorism problem of mass shootings. Still, the courage shown by the five members who stopped the shooter deserves it. Those individuals tackled the shooter and tied him up with an electric cord, while wounded.  It's so tough to fathom that those possibilities are within the realm of your Sunday worship, within the sanctity of your church.  But such is America... 2. Olivia Rodrigo & Drake - Rodrigo continues to reap rewards on an excellent album in 2021 as she topped the Billboard Music Awards with seven awards. There was also Drake who I'm beginning to sense we won't really appreciate his body of work until he's near the end of his career. But yeah, Drake poured in a few more for the legacy debates and discussions.

Sunday Sundown Rundown - 5/1/22

3 Up 1. Harvard Statement on Enslavement Past - We're currently in a world where dealing with slavery and oppression and all that it was in the past has created further division of the present, as well as ideals to move forward. We're all still trying to figure that out, but as we do, props are given to those who do it without the trendiness of the gesture.  Harvard can be slammed for a whole lot in this arena, but they get the top spot this week for taking steps in a major way - just admitting its connection - is a great start.  2. "Out of Pandemic" Phase - The world surely feels as "normal" as it's felt in a long time. While Dr. Facui's comments were well...confusing and required some cleaning up, the gesture is very much understood - we ain't that bad anymore! Things are definitely not going to snap back to pre-2020, but it definitely feels as close to non-pandemic-ish as it ever has.