«And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, ‘If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all’ » (Mark 9:35).
I REMEMBER IT as if it were yesterday. It was the first evangelistic campaign in which I participated as a preacher. Those were some very stressful days. There were nights when I hurried home with my two children and, since I had to finish the sermon I was going to preach, could not give them supper. I did not have time to take care of them. Concerned about that situation, I asked God, «Lord, why am I here? Are you the One who wants me to preach in this campaign? Am I wrong? Please let me know clearly if I should give up this responsibility. I see that my poor children are hungry and I am exhausted. I have no energy for anything. If it is better for someone else to take over, tell me clearly.»
That very night, in the middle of my confusion, my worry, my uncertainty, my anxiety, and my stress, I preached with such fervor that I surprised myself. I understood that the Holy Spirit was doing a great work for us. I preached about the historical change of the observance of the Sabbath to Sunday, and at the end, after the call that I made to those present, eight people who made the decision to be baptized stood up.
At the end, a young pregnant woman came up to me to say, «I asked God to give me proof this evening whether I should get baptized and be a member of this church. He replied to me through your sermon. You made me see that the Bible is very clear concerning the law of God. I no longer have any doubts. I want you to know that I was going through life errant, with bad friends, drinking alcohol, and doing worse things, but I have decided to follow Christ.»
I had the privilege a short time later of seeing her go down in the waters of baptism along with seven other people. It was then that I understood that God is always in control. Just like Gideon asked God for proof that he was the chosen one, I made my own request to God, and the pregnant young woman who decided to get baptized did as well. God hears us and transforms our lives so that we may enter into His service. He wants to use us to take the gospel to the whole world. Do you want to respond to the call?