It was a cold day. The ocean mist hung over the city like the wet blanket it was. We were all wrapped up like cocoons, trying to find some warmth against the cool, heavy humidity that penetrated our bones. Yet, in spite of the cold, there were some who were about to demonstrate their love for Jesus.
Two brave souls endured the cool air and even cooler water in the baptismal pool. Two demonstrated their love for Jesus in a work that is only two months old. We had hoped for more; but we rejoiced with the two.
Because the work is so new and because of a shortage of national workers, I found myself doing the baptizing. It's not my preferred method of working here. I am that school of thought who wants the locals to do the work. The man we baptized was not a good candidate for that; I won't go into reasons why. I just intend to rejoice over the the first fruits of this new work.
Now, I want you to meet Hilario. I am including this profession of faith because of its uniqueness. Hilario saw us gathered like sardines in our little building the community designated as the "temple." He chose to stop by on his way home with his tiny bag of herbs for his meal that day. He listened to the story from Acts 16. He watched intently as I baptized the two new believers. And he gave his heart to the Lord. I asked Hilario his age. He is 91. And yesterday he met the Savior for the first time in his life.
But Hilario was not the first that day. A 14-year-old named Junior was the first to profess Christ yesterday. I wrote about Junior sometime ago. Junior is the one who tried to kill himself with rat poison. Yesterday we celebrated the death of the old man and the birth of the new Junior. He stood before us with a big smile telling us about his conversion. A child led Hilario. A young man will now become a warrior for Jesus.
It was a day for rejoicing and celebration. It was the Lord's Day. It was Strong Tower Baptist Church's first fruits.