I’m Joseph Castro from Youth Ministry. I’m here to glorify the Lord’s Name. I was once from a religion which believes that Jesus Christ is just human like us. I remember saying blasphemous things to God and blaming Him for all the problems I had at that time. I was one of those people who’s really into arguments when it comes to the topic about God. But my friends, who happened to be involved in Youth Ministry here at COG Dasma, kept on inviting me to attend and sharing how relieving it is to just cry out their problems to God, despite the fact that I was always provoking them. They are persistent until one of them finally caught my attention and made me curious how his life has been changed. This friend of mine I’ve known for so long had the habit of lying especially with money matters. I know it and I’ve experienced it firsthand, but never dared to mention it to him. But since the time he became active in the ministry, I’ve seen a significant change in his life. I started to wonder why and how a consistent liar became suddenly honest right now. He even speaks blessings to me. I challenged myself to attend and join my friends since I can see real change in their lives.
My life was not easy. I have experienced almost all kinds of problems – I was physically abused by my drunk father, my brother was accused of a crime he did not commit, I worked as a houseboy without knowing that I would not be given salary in return, not even allowance. Being a province boy, I started to explore Manila where I had nobody to turn to. Friends will listen, but will not always understand. There came a time when I was too depressed that I almost hurt myself physically because I losing the purpose in life.
When I joined my friends this year to a Youth Fellowship, that’s when I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. Being so hungry in knowing the Lord, I also attended ExCEL service where I was told that God is moving and doing miracles. True enough, God strengthened me as I surrendered every pain. I may not have diseases to be healed physically, but the Lord healed me spiritually.
I learned to worship God and I don’t want to give “leftovers” to Him because He himself did not hesitate to forgive me and give us the best; His Son Jesus Christ. Now, I want to encourage everyone that He sees and hears you. Persecutions may come, but I don’t want to give up! But no one can stop this heart from seeking the Lord all the more.
On the verge of giving up, that’s when God found me; embraced, enlightened and even changed me! My biological family may be broken, but God has given me a new family here at church. Despite the problems I encountered, my heart is joyful because I now have the Lord in my life.