We are excited to baptize this group on Easter Sunday at 2:00 P.M. at Kitsilano Beach. Below are their written testimonies.
I grew up in a Christian home with godly parents. My parents had me baptized as an infant, as well as my siblings, as they dedicated their children to God. We were active members of a church, and I was sent to a Christian school that taught me a lot of Bible knowledge.
However, as the eldest son, I grew up feeling that I was primarily pleasing my parents and fulfilling the expectations of others. My faith was not my own- it felt more like a duty or an obligation.
When I started university, I started exploring faith for myself. I stopped attending church and instead joined a Christian club (IVCF). When I moved to Vancouver in my mid-twenties, I continued the search by joining a church. But it still felt like a duty or obligation, and in my late twenties, I left church and made a deliberate choice to live without God. At the time, it felt more honest- follow God with integrity, or don’t follow Him at all. Looking back, I think the real reason is that I did not yet have a genuine personal encounter with Christ.
This two-year period of my life culminated in travelling around the world to “find myself”. I ended up one day in Thailand at the top of a hill overlooking Burma, talking with a refugee that had lost everything they owned fleeing with his family to Thailand to escape the evils of the Burmese army. When confronted by this stark story of the evil of man to man, I was overwhelmed by the thought that “God is bigger than me”, and “a world without God does not make any sense”. I was convicted of my selfishness and self-centeredness, and this started the process of “finding God” for myself- which really was the start of my repentance and returning back to Him.
After my travels, I returned to Vancouver and began attending church again. I met my wife who is a committed Christian, a godly woman, and who truly loves Jesus. She has led me into the joy of a Christian marriage. We have been happily married for twenty years, and now have four (tall) boys. We deeply desire that they know Jesus as we do.
I can tell you today, with absolute certainty, that I am a child of God. I have experienced life without Jesus and life with Jesus, and it is like going from living a life in monochrome to a life in techni-colour! Getting baptized is an opportunity to remind myself and to tell you of God’s faithfulness in my life, even when I have not been faithful to Him. He has always been walking with me, even when I have not been walking with Him. It is my chance to tell you that it is not about me, it is about Him!
I still struggle at times with feeling accepted as a child of God. On some days, I don’t have confidence of my status with Christ in the midst of a struggle or temptation. It helps me to be reminded that surrendering to and trusting in Jesus is a daily process- each day is a decision to follow Him in the midst of daily choices, big or small.
My favourite scripture is Psalm 139: “O Lord, You have searched me and known me!”. My verses for my baptism are Lamentations 3: 22-23: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” and Hebrews 10:23: “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”
I grew up in a Christian family, so I have always known Jesus, but I did not trust him until grade 8. Before I trusted Jesus, my friends were the biggest and the most important thing for me. Friends are good things but when you idolise them, they tend to disappoint. When I moved schools in grade 4, I had no friends, and I was very shy, and it took me until the third term to make any friends. This was a big challenge and I felt alone especially because God was more of a side thought for me and I did not pray to him other than at night with my parents. Eventually I met some friends, and I stayed with them until grade 6. In grade 6 COVID hit in March so that meant that I would not see my friends for a while. I started TL (transitional learning). TL is an online class that we would attend in the morning, and they would give us instructions on what to do. This was good for a brief time, but after a while I started to become disconnected from my school friends. I did TL and they went back to school, so I was not even seeing them on zoom. I finally came back to school (in February)in person, and I was excited to see my friends again and get back to the ways things were. When I got back to school my best friend was different than before. She was sad and could not see happiness in anything. Earlier that same year my grandma passed away. All of this made me feel so alone because I did not know that you could talk to God about your problems and that you needed him. I thought that God was a side note and that I saw him at church, and we prayed to him but that was it.
In grade 8, I went to RCS (Richmond Christian school), and I found God. They taught me that God is not just a side note – that he knows all and loves you for who you are. More than that, you can always talk to him, and he will listen. I was 5years old when I said the prayer of confession that Jesus is the true God, but I do not think that I really surrendered to God until I was in grade 8. I took control of my life and did not let God in. Sometimes I tend to think that needing help from God means that I am weak. I know now that I was blocking him out and that I always need his help no matter what. Ireally surrendered to God in grade 8 by letting him into my life. I stopped blocking him out or only praying to him if I needed help. Jesus died for my sins even though he is perfect, and I am sinful. He died for me and everyone around me.Jesus, God’s Son, came down to earth and died on the cross. I did not understand how unbelievable this is and how much Jesus had to love us to do this for us.
Now that I am walking with him, I am more confident and less worried about things because I know that I can give it to God, and he will listen. I know that when things go wrong it is for a reason and that God will be with me through it all. I am never truly alone because God is always here. He lives within us and loves everyone. This experience brought me closer to Jesus because I had no one else to trust. I believe that bad things happen in life because the world and people are sinful, but God makes the best out of a tough situation.
I did not grow up in a Christian family nor did I have friends who were Christians. I did know about God but I didn’t know how to develop a relationship with him or that he had a plan for me. Due to the lack of knowledge, I thought I controlled my own destiny. I thought if I worked hard and put enough effort into something, it would or at least should work out the way I wanted it to. If things did not, I worked harder. As I achieved and accomplished more life goals, I had the desire to want more. I never seemed to be present or satisfied with what I had. If I encountered challenging or heartbreaking situations, I always relied on myself to turn things around.
A few years ago, a friend of mine told me about the Alpha course. I decided to check it out one September evening. I remember walking into the building nervous because I did not know anyone but the community was so inclusive. I felt like I fit in right away. During the session on Prayer was when I truly felt God’s presence. I had been attending these Alpha sessions with a broken heart because I was burdened by the fact that my husband and I were unable to conceive a child for at least 2 years. Infertility affected all areas of my life – emotionally, physically, mentally and financially. It was tough on my marriage and affected many of my friendships. I said a prayer that evening. I prayed for forgiveness of my sins and if God truly knew me and had a plan, then I would relinquish control. It was too much for me to constantly be in control of everything in my life. Immediately, I felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. As I started building relationships with God and his people, he and they helped heal my broken heart and see different perspectives on life. The church community lifted me up and I was much happier. As a group, we prayed for many things, one of which was to have a baby. 10 months later, a miracle happened and I was pregnant with my first and only child.
A year ago, through an invitation, I attended Easter service at Christ City with my son and my husband who had never attended church with me before. I can feel the love and support of Jesus working through the friends we have made at Christ City. A month ago, my 3-year-old son asked me to pray for him. I know that God is working on me and my family and He has led me to baptism as my next step in my spiritual journey. I am declaring my faith in Jesus Christ because he sacrificed his life for me so I can have eternal hope. I am excited to outwardly declare my love for Jesus Christ, my saviour and I want to devote and commit to living a life for Christ.
As far as I can remember I didn’t have a life before Christ. I have known Jesus my whole life and I know Him as my saviour, my teacher and my helper. When I was three and four, we started to realize that I had Celiac disease, and I was really sick and in pain so I had to lay on the couch most of the time and I had nothing to do. And the Lord comforted me through that time. I learned that the Lord is with me through very hard times and that he takes care of me and protects me. When I sin and I pray to Him and say I’m sorry for what I have done He forgives me and He pierces my heart with a love far greater than I have ever known.
I love to worship Jesus in songs that express how wonderful He is to me. The Secret Place is my favorite worship song right now because it feels like I’m drawing near to God whenever I listen to it, and so I always sing along with it. To be drawn close to God reminds me that God knows me perfectly and He knows everything about me. Yet God loves when I tell Him things and share with him. I’m thankful for how He has given me shelter and a wonderful church to learn about Him and worship Him and praise Him and how I get to build upon that and continue to learn more about Him. My baptism is a way for me to show people and tell people what God has done for me already. That God has saved me and already changed me.
I love the memory verse about Jesus as the rider on the white horse because it describes how powerful and wonderful he is.
Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in[a] blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.
I believe that Jesus is my King and He’s the main thing I live for in my life.
My life before becoming a Christian looked a lot like it does now. I’ve always gone to Church, Youth and/or Sunday School for as long as I can remember. Growing up in a Christian home, I’ve always known about Jesus, but I didn’t always want to know him. I remember thinking Church was a chore I had to get through.
Moving to Vancouver brought a lot of change and difficult situations to my life. When my parents decided to move here, I felt like I lost all my friends and family. I felt like life became sad and a little depressing.
I remember during that time I started praying more, asking God to take away my sadness and to give me friends. At the same time, I remember being in the DTES and seeing homelessness for the first time. I felt sad for those people, and their hardship, and I remember starting to pray for them. It also helped me to see the good things that God had put in my life.
Jesus gives me my purpose in life. When I’m afraid or feeling alone, I turn to Jesus, and I know he’s there for me. I trust that Jesus died on the cross in my place so that I don’t need to pay for my own sins.
Since I became a Christian, I’m becoming more and more interested in my faith. I want to know God, and I’m excited about Church and reading my bible as I learn about my faith. God has given me lots of opportunities to share Jesus with people in my life that don’t know him. I’m learning to trust Him as He helps me to share the gospel.
I feel my conviction growing too. God is helping me to turn away from sin. When I do sin, instead of just feeling bad for myself I now want to repent and turn back to God. I also feel a growing desire to try not to sin.
I want to be baptized because I’m a Christian, I love Jesus, and I want to obey him.
My favorite verse is Psalm 25:5 – “Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.”
I had belief in Jesus from my childhood since I was born in a Christian family and studied in a Christian institution. However, I had many questions in my mind because in the place where I lived people followed other religious practices and traditions that were not given in the bible though they were Christians. Even thought I had questions about this I never tried to sort it out, it was always a simple discussion with my close friends and then I just moved on.
Jesus answered me through my marriage. After getting married, my wife helped to answer some of my questions as she is someone who faced a similar kind of situation. I started reading the bible and God helped me to correct my mistakes even those that I had been doing without my own knowledge.
After coming to Canada, we came to know about Christ City church through my friend. Jesus had made a lot of differences in my life through this church. I think now I can say I’m a complete believer in Jesus. Though my parents took me to church and baptized me when I was born, I want to be baptized again because I want to show that it is my own decision to follow Jesus.
I was born and raised in a Christian home and have always been aware of Jesus. As a kid, I was always aware of my faith, but I never really took it into my own hands. I understood what Christianity was and the basics of it, but I never knew how to love God or fully appreciate what Jesus did for me on the cross. At times, I even dreaded going to church as I was just not very passionate about my faith. However, I would consider myself to be a Christian at the time, but more of a luke-warm Christian.
A turning point in my life was during the pandemic. The stress, uncertainty and isolation every day was overwhelming. I decided to start reading my Bible every day and to pursue God. God revealed to me that He is always in control and that I need to put my trust in Him.
Since growing closer with God and having a passion for Him, I feel like I have been truly blessed and have been so much more fulfilled spiritually. I have realized that Jesus is the only thing that can satisfy me and that I want to have God as the authority of my life.
I want to get baptized because I want to proclaim my faith and make it my own as I head off to Trinity Western University this Fall in the next chapter of my life. I know that I will face trials and temptations, but I want Jesus to stay at the center and number one priority for the rest of my life. Now, I am ready to take my faith into my own hands. I want to continue to grow in my relationship with Jesus and to share His love with others. I am excited to see where He will lead me and what He will do in my life. I am so grateful for His grace and mercy, and I am excited to see what He has in store for me as I continue to walk with Him.
Before I came to know Jesus, I was a pretty lost person. Always striving to find happiness and avoid loneliness. I would jump from relationship to relationship thinking that on my own, I couldn’t find happiness. I guess that is true but I was turning to the wrong person. In addition to this, I wanted to control every aspect of my life. I would spend sleepless nights thinking of all the things I need to do to accomplish what I wanted and have it done in a certain timeline; but then I would fail and be upset and continue the cycle of seeking happiness.
I always knew of God – as a child, funnily enough, I was exposed to the bible through JW followers who would come knocking on your door. They had dropped off a kid friendly version and I really enjoyed reading the stories about this saviour. So even as a child, I would “pray” to God but never knowing if he heard me or if I was doing it right. It wasn’t until I started dating Trevor that I attended my first church service. However, I don’t think I was really attending for the right reasons – I was going more so to appease Trevor rather than really building a relationship with God.
It wasn’t until I went through a rough patch in my relationship with Trevor and I hit a major low in my life; I had lost what I thought would give me happiness and I lost control of the situation. This threw suicidal thoughts in my head and after a failed attempt, I knew I couldn’t control it on my own and I asked my parents to check me into the hospital for monitoring. It was then, while I waited in the hallways of VGH, did I feel the calling of God. For some reason, I felt that nothing else could give me peace besides reading the bible at that time. I asked a nurse for a bible and she looked at me and said, “what do you think this is? A hotel?” Needless to say, I didn’t get a bible but that moment was a true turning point for me. After I was discharged, I started attending church again with another friend of mine but this time, the sermons were reaching my heart in a new way and I knew that God was the only person who I could truly rely on to give me happiness.
It’s been a few years since I’ve been a follower of Christ. I can’t say I don’t still love to have control but I now know, I can want something but really it’s not up to me. I have to trust that God knows what’s best for me and that only He knows the perfect plan. I find comfort now knowing that it’s not through my merits that I have been saved because I could never be perfect enough to be saved if that were the case! I want to be baptized because I want to publicly proclaim that God is my Lord and saviour and only through his birth, death and resurrection can I be saved.
I grew up in a Christian family so I have known Jesus since I was little. A few years ago, I went to Awana which is a weekly bible school. They taught me about Jesus and what he has done for me. They took a lot of time to tell us about how Jesus died for us and what we should do to be saved. One day I prayed with them to have Jesus be the lord of my life because I had a feeling Jesus was calling me to be a part of his kingdom. I recognized that I had sinned and that I needed to repent.
Now that Jesus is with me, I have hope and I feel like he has helped me sin less, he made me more aware of my sin and now I know that I can ask him to forgive my sins. Often, I will feel him telling me that I have sinned and that I need to talk to him. The Bible says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
I know that I am a Christian because I have asked Jesus to lead my life. He has saved me by dying on the cross and I know he is always present, and I have the gift of being able to talk to him, hear him, and find comfort in him. I want to be baptised because I want to show others what Jesus has done for me, and that everyone needs to be forgiven and have a personal relationship with Jesus.
I had a pretty up and down childhood, having friends across the board, experiencing good and bad, and struggling with identity and inferiority. Throughout, the one constant was that I always felt there was a higher power “in control”, putting me through obstacles and challenges, although I never knew why.
Jesus came into the picture a long time ago through basketball. My friend became a Christian, and it was through him that I had my first exposure to Jesus. Between 1995-1999, my friend’s church held basketball sessions every Friday for free at Killarney Rec Center. For those 4 years we had to listen to a 10 min speech from the Bible before the start of each basketball session. That was the start of my journey of getting to know Jesus, absorbing Bible stories over those 4 years, whether I was actively listening, or not.
Between 1999 to 2006, there were many different people who came into my life, and many of them were Christian. I started a relationship with Jayne, who is now my wife. She was a Christian, and so suddenly the idea of being Christian wasn’t just floating in
my head but was right in my face. I knew that continuing on with her but without knowing Jesus would be trouble. But I also knew that accepting Christ just to be with her would also be trouble. By God’s grace, I was sent on an 8 month business trip. I was alone for those 8 months, spending time at work and a hotel. On hindsight the 8 months was God’s way of giving me space to really consider what my journey had been up to that point, and to show me that He was the one that was always in control and guiding me.
On the last week before the end of my trip, I went to a church that had been referred to me by Jayne’s Dad. I had been supposed to go at the beginning of my trip, but procrastinated till the last week. After the service, I met up with Pastor Wilfred, the Pastor at the church, and we talked about my journey. Through that talk, I realized that there wasn’t anything I needed to become in order to be Christian. I had previously thought that I needed to be a good enough person to be a Christian, but it was then that I realised that the only thing that I was missing was faith. Pastor Wilfred prayed with me and I accepted Christ in faith.
Since then, I’ve realised that accepting Christ and repenting of your sins doesn’t change you right away. I still struggle with identity and inferiority. But now I struggle in faith, assured that Jesus is the “higher” power and will guide me in my struggles. It’s also taken me a while to understand that we have to continually come back to God and repent. However, I also now live with the confidence that my identity is in Christ, and my longing for who I am is fulfilled. There’s a new sense of energy in me knowing what He did on the cross and who He defeated. There’s a new understanding and spark of joy in me that what I try to do in my life for God is a response to what He has already done for me and conquered for me, even though I really didn’t deserve it. Getting baptized is the outward expression of what He has done for me, and of my new identity as a result. It’s about time I did it.