Nigel Irwin shares how an already special day at Gilgal Baptist Church became even better
Sunday 23 June was a day like no other in the life of Gilgal Baptist Church, Porthcawl. We were excited at the prospect of a Baptismal service with Rest Bay Church, another local evangelical church with whom we share a close relationship. An elderly gentleman from their Church was due to be baptised along with three generations of one family; Pam Panter (grandmother), Alison Westwood (mother) and Gareth Westwood (son). But things just kept getting better!
Our pastor, the Revd Martin Gillard, always makes an invite at Baptismal services for any believer who has not yet been baptised, and who can make a confession of faith, to come forward and follow our Lord’s instruction to be baptised there and then.
A lady from Rest Bay came forward, together with Rob Jones of our fellowship. Rob has been worshipping with us since Christmas and had taken Communion for the first time the previous Sunday. He has since given a moving testimony to the Church during a Sunday morning service and has asked for membership.
That was not the end of the blessings, as Martin said that we would leave the water in the pool until the evening in case any others wished to follow the command.
One of our young men, Scott Kilpatrick, gave his testimony in the evening, together with Beth, a lady from another local church where believer’s baptism is not usually celebrated. She is part of the leadership team of that church and the friend and colleague of one of our members.
Finally, Bev Poulton, another friend and erstwhile colleague of our above-mentioned member and Beth, was baptised. Bev had not been to our church before that morning, but during the previous week she had passed by and felt an over-whelming call that she should be there for the service on Sunday morning.
She, and her husband, had followed that call and Bev had felt the Lord speak to her in a very real and powerful way and she knew that she too must be baptised. She gave a wonderful testimony of how the Lord had worked in her life in the past, and how she wanted to re-establish the relationship with Him that He had never severed, but she had allowed to slip. She has been with us every Sunday since and has joined one of our Bible study groups and she too has requested Church membership with us.
So we were excited at the prospect of four baptisms but ended up with nine! God is indeed very good, and we pray that all of those who answered our Lord’s command on that wonderful Sunday will continue to grow in faith and seek to serve our wonderful Lord and Saviour in every aspect of their lives, as together we seek to follow our Church motto: ‘To know Jesus better, and make him better known’.
Nigel Irwin is the Treasurer of Gilgal Baptist Church