About The Writer

Anawangin, Zambales

Photo by: Joash Maramara

[Hi. I’m Rebekah, and I live in the Philippines. I am a teacher by profession; a poet, a daughter, and a soul saved by the grace of God alone through faith in Christ alone. I think at this point it is important to say that before I am anything else, I am first and foremost a Christian. Thus, though this blog is dedicated mostly for my literary works, I would like to tell you first my story. I presented this testimony earlier this year to the congregation for an evangelistic night. An evangelistic night is a vesper service modified to accommodate the sharing of the gospel to unbelievers, and one part of it is the sharing of the members’ testimony of how God saved them. I was one of the first ones to share.

If you find this post, or any others in this blog, to be helpful or inspiring in any degree, please do drop me a message. It would be an encouragement for me to keep on writing and weaving stories.]

Salvation Testimony

A friend once asked me a just few months ago for my written testimony when I applied for this church. I didn’t think there was any problem, but when I thought more about it, I realized that my testimony I wrote for the church 6 years ago is not something I could share anymore. Not because my salvation story then wasn’t true, but because a lot of God-given, life changing lessons happened after I was saved. I guess the first thing I realized is that testimonies are always changing, because God never stops writing our story. For this afternoon I would to share who I was before I knew God, what God did to save me, and what God taught me after being saved.

As most of you would probably know, I grew up as a Sunday Schooler. I faithfully attended Sunday services long before I could walk. I read the Bible quite regularly, thanks to the Sunday School Reading Chart that comes with stickers and stars when you’ve completed it. I also got used to taking notes faithfully, which was a friendly competition between my church friends—whoever gets the longest notes gets bragging rights. In the most general sense, I did nothing that the societal standards of morality can be against.

But what most you probably did not know is I grew up as a hypocrite. I liked the religious activities I had not because I loved the Lord then, but because it satisfied my intellect. I enjoyed the fact that I know church history, that I know a lot of theological jargons, and that I could explain things like Calvin’s TULIP and stories and characters in the Bible that other people have never heard of. It’s not really that I did not believe the gospel. But for the longest time I treated Christianity as a favorite academic subject. My head knowledge of who God is did not affect my life. I didn’t feel anything about it. I didn’t love the Word, and my outward decency was not good enough.

I was saved when I was 13. Nothing drastic happened on the outside. It just all started with one family devotion on John 12. It was about Jesus condemning the Pharisees for being hypocrites. I couldn’t explain what the trigger was then. I’ve read that chapter a lot of times. But at that time it suddenly dawned on me that I was no better off than the Pharisees. I could recite the law of God, but like the Pharisees it didn’t mean anything to me. One realization led to another, and few days before my 14th birthday, I was accepted as a church member.

I thought I’ll have life easy after becoming a member. I thought I would be walking on a rainbow of happiness as I draw closer to God. But what came after my conversion wasn’t exactly rainbow-filled. The first thing I had to learn is to look at the right direction and person. As a child who grew up with the standards of the scripture, I was pressured to see the fruits of my newly found faith. I kept trying to make the fruit of the Spirit appear—tried hard to be patient, loving, kind. But the first blow of hard lessons that God taught me after my conversion is that I’m not supposed to focus on the fruits, but on Him, the root that gives me life. Six years after, He is has taught me the same lesson in various ways and areas. But the message stays the same: focus upon God. Fix your gaze upon Jesus.

And ultimately I guess what I want to point out in sharing my story is that no one is ever good enough before the standard of God, no one is too young or old to listen and obey the call of Jesus to salvation, and no one is walking in the faith long enough to ever run out of spiritual lessons. And I’m sure the lessons won’t get any easier, but one thing is also sure—the grace will always, always be sufficient to hold us through every trial and temptation.

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