In 1957, my Father and Mother became baptized as adults and joined the little Baptist Church in our village. My parents, my three sisters and I attended that church until we left the country in 1965. When my parents became Baptists, my Father had one of those father-son conversations about the major change in his life and how that was going to affect us. On the positive side it meant that he would no longer get drunk or be gone from the home without my mother knowing his whereabouts. On the negative side, being a practicing Christian in a communist land presented a host of problems. In this father-son conversation, my father mentioned three simple things: 1) I will never be alone because God has promised to be with us all the time; 2) God made me smart and I should use my brain to the utmost of my ability, 3) If I ever needed his help he would always be there for me. As we children grew up, my parents’ desire was for us to commit our lives to Christ and to find as life partners people who love the Lord and were involved in the work of God’s Kingdom. Three of the four children were baptized in Detroit on April, 1967, and my youngest sister kept my parents in praying form. She was baptized in Los Angeles in 1976, and I still remember my father’s prayer of thanksgiving because all of his children committed their lives to Christ. The next stage was to find life partners with whom we can serve in God’s house. My youngest sister is still single. The three of us who got married all married musicians who are involved in God’s house. My wife is a piano teacher, and a pianist, youth bell choir director and adult choir accompanist in our church. One of my brothers-in-law is an organist who plays in two churches on Sundays - one in the morning and one in the afternoon. My other brother-in-law is the choir director of his church, the treasurer and a deacon. God has blessed our three new families with 9 children. Out of the nine children, 8 gave their lives to Christ and were baptized. My youngest daughter is too young to be baptized, but she has assured me already that very soon she will be baptized because she loves the Lord and has given her life to Him already. In the meantime, my parents have gone to be with the Lord - my father in July of 1996, and my mother in February of 2005. This year the weddings began. In August, 2007 I had the great privilege and blessing to co-officiate the wedding of my oldest daughter. She married a young man who is preparing himself to be a pastor in the near future. Then this coming Saturday, I will officiate the wedding of my oldest niece whose future husband has joined the Baptist Church.
One generation goes and another comes. The heritage that we have received from my parents is a heritage of faith in Jesus Christ and commitment to His kingdom. As I look at my children and my nephew and nieces loving and serving the Lord, I can ascertain with the well-known missionary David Livingstone that the future is bright as the promises of God.