One of the best events we have at House of Refuge Sunnyslope is when we baptize residents. Here’s a story from the Spring 2008 Newsletter by former Executive Director, Paul Williams.
This is difficult to put into words:
On Sunday morning of the Baptism, one of the men informed our General Manager, Roby, that he would like to be baptized. I spoke with Roby by phone and said that I would speak to the resident when I got there. Well, it wasn’t until about 15 minutes before we were starting that Manny and I got time to speak. I asked Manny why he wanted to be baptized and he said because he believed in God. I asked him, “What about Christ? Where does he fit in?
He replied that he knew that Christ had died for our sins. Now, I don’t know why, but I felt that I wanted to say, “Well, that’s great, but we have five guys already and only five robes, so why don’t we wait until the next time?” But God had a different plan and I said, without really realizing what I was saying, “Let’s go into my office.”
We went into the office and I asked Manny if he had ever asked Jesus into his heart and he said, “No.”
I asked him if he would like to and he said, “Yes.”
I asked Manny to follow me in a salvation prayer and when he said, “Amen”, he jumped out of his chair! He was crying and laughing and hugging himself and yelling, “What’s happening to me?”
I had never seen a response like this before and I guess I stood dumbfounded for a few seconds, (probably about 20), and he kept laughing and clutching himself and jumping and saying, “What’s happening to me?”
Finally, I yelled, “It’s the Holy Spirit!”
So then the two of us went back and forth a couple of times, “What’s happening?”
“It’s the Holy Spirit!”
At the same time, I got a sense of chills that started at my feet and went up to my head. the hairs on my arm stood up like spikes. Meanwhile, Manny starts saying, “I’m so cold,” but he was still laughing and crying and hugging himself. The whole room dropped about 5-10 degrees. It was God! What a blessing!
There was a knock on the door; the other five guys were back with their robes on so we could pray before we started. I was trying to tell them what happened, but I was still flabbergasted but I know that I was sputtering something. I told Manny to go tell Roby what happened and he did and the hairs on Roby’s arms stood up like spikes!
Amazing Love, How Can it Be!
We baptized 6 men. There is so much that can be said, but John 3:16 definitely does say it all.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16