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Introduction by Hayley:

Ian and I started coming to PCF about a year ago when we moved to the area.  Anybody here who has got to know us will know that Ian is the silent type but it’s hard to shut me up.  But I know that my voice is hard enough to “tune into” even on a good day, and even worse when I’m nervous like today, so I’ve asked Andrew to read out my testimony for me.

Testimony read out by Andrew:

I was baptised as a baby and attended our local village church on and off as I was growing up although it didn’t mean much to me.  When I started university, I attended a lively evangelical Anglican church and when the church started confirmation classes it seemed a natural step to get confirmed even though I wouldn’t say that I had a personal relationship with Jesus.  It wasn’t long after the confirmation that I got involved in other aspects of student life and turned my back on the church.

I finally made a personal commitment to Christ some years later in the late 1990’s and was quickly convicted that Believer’s Baptism was the way that God intended it.  Before moving to Stockport I attended an Anglican church in Wolverhampton for over 10 years where infant dedication and Believer’s Baptism was the norm, but I was never challenged about my own baptism.  I was quite happy with the thought that I had been christened as a baby, and as I now had a personal relationship with Jesus, everything was OK!

When Ian and I started coming to PCF about a year ago, we attended an introductory course and Andrew mentioned that one of the prerequisites for membership was full immersion baptism.  Being very stubborn, my reaction was “fine, I don’t need to be a member to come here and I’m certainly not being baptised for that reason”!  Thankfully God had other ideas and what he had done was plant a seed of doubt about my previous thoughts (or lack of!) regarding my own baptism.

When Andrew announced the forthcoming baptisms back in June, after a week or two of procrastination, I signed up – but only because I knew that I could pull out before I had to commit myself.  When I was informed of the date of the class it clashed with a very important shopping date with one of my best mates!  Anyway, I was having doubts, so surely I didn’t have a strong enough faith to be baptised!  Of course, God had other plans – at the service the week before the baptism, He gave somebody a Word of Knowledge that very specifically spoke to my doubts, and just so I didn’t miss it, He gave it to the person sat directly in front of me!  I went up for prayer and was convicted that I should attend the class and go forward for baptism.  By the way, the baptism class was over ahead of time and I still made it to Birmingham in time for plenty of retail therapy!

So I am here today to get baptised as an outward expression of my personal relationship with Christ Jesus.  I don’t have to be perfect to be baptised!  What is I do have is a desire to follow Christ and be obedient to allow Him to complete the work He’s started – it’s a lifelong task!