Alfonso Lemus and his family
We are the Lemus family. I am Alfonso, my wife is Eileen, and our two sons are Andrés and Sebastian who are 16 and 14 years old respectively. We are members of Petra Bible Church in Managua, Nicaragua.
God brought us to Petra Bible Church in 2009. At that moment, we were trying, through our own efforts, to rescue our marriage, which had been established on lies, deceit, unfaithfulness, bitterness, anger, lack of forgiveness, etc. But the root of all these problems was that our hearts were far from God.
We became married in 2000 in Guatemala, my native country, and were together during 3 years, hiding in an apparently “happy marriage”. After those three years, I made the wrong decision of leaving my family to work in another country in order to earn a better income. I thought that was a good reason, but it was neither right nor Biblical. Once I left, my wife and children moved back to live to Nicaragua.
My plan was to be out during a period of six months to a year, which was later extended to 5 years. During those 5 years, our hearts kept accumulating more sin. Pain, rejection, resentment, unsteadiness, and fear grew in my wife’s heart because of my abandonment of the family. My absence was also provoking damage in the hearts of my sons.
However, the Sovereignty of God and His perfect plan was already in progress in our lives. In 2008, the Lord moved the heart of my wife and mine, putting a strong desire to get together and start our life once again–this time in Nicaragua.
In 2009, we counted on God’s favor and arrived for the first time to Petra Bible Church in Managua, where we experienced the love of Christ through the discipleship given by our pastors, leaders, and other married couples. By God’s Grace, we were able to understand that for those who are His children, nothing shall ever “separate us from the love of Christ” (Rom. 8:31-39).
We are so blessed to be part of Petra Bible Church, where through expository preaching of God’s Word and discipleship, we have understood that nothing is about us, neither as individuals nor as a family, but everything is about the glory of Christ.
In His mercy, God saved us from eternal death. He restored our marriage by letting us to grow up in the knowledge of Christ, and He healed our hearts and our children’s hearts too. He has given us a life of freedom in Christ, where our joy is complete in Him no matter the circumstances.
As a family, we have experienced the power of God who changes lives through the gospel. We are just a testimony of many families, which have been blessed by God through Petra Bible Church. Everything is related to Christ’s Grace. We thank God and pray for people like you who obey the voice of the Lord and contribute to build the Kingdom of God in Nicaragua.
To God is the Glory.
José Domingo “El Papi”
My name is Jose Domingo Baldelomar. I was a vagabond. I lost my wife and daughters due to my addiction to alcohol; my parents abandoned me, throwing me out of the house. I eventually moved to Ometepe Island to continue drinking and waiting for death. I tried to visit some evangelistic/pentecostal churches to help me, but everything was useless. I felt alone, without family, without relatives, without home.
I went to Balgue but people could not stand me. I unloaded my pain with the people from the community. Alcoholics Anonymous didn’t help me either; I was a slave of sin.
One day, at the launch of Petra Balgue, I was drunk and I entered the service. I thought they were going to take me out, but it was not like that. After the service, they prayed for me, which called my attention. The pastor of the church continued looking for me to tell me about the Gospel. I used to sleep on a bus station, and he used to go to preach to me about the true love and mercy God. I understood that the reason of my addiction, my failures were the results of my enmity with God. My whole life was an offense to the Creator, and only Jesus could intercede to the Father to forgive me. I now believe that God forgave me in Christ Jesus.
Now I am a song of God. It was hard for me to understand the safety of my salvation, how He is faithful to a 60 year old man with many sins from his past. Now I know that nothing can set me apart from His hands.
After more than 30 years, God gave me the opportunity to once again see my wife. I asked her forgiveness for all the time I caused her pain. She is now married. I was also able to ask forgiveness to my daughters, and now I have peace with them. They now come visit me, but I realize that my real family consists of my brothers and sisters from the Church. I have my Lord Jesus and many brothers in Christ, and I am saved by grace of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Rafael Aragón and his family
Many years ago, my wife Daniela and I felt a desire to become closer to God, so we visited many “Christian” churches in the places where we had lived throughout many years in our marriage (Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua). At that time we hadn’t known the true Gospel, but the Lord had put in our hearts His wisdom to discern that those weren’t healthy churches.
I wasn’t a good spiritual leader in my home and our marriage was failing in many areas. In the depth of our hearts, there was sadness and bitterness. I had exposed to my wife and our daughters to many dangers and very sad situations because of my wrong decisions and sins.
During the time we have been a part of the Church, we have received sound doctrine that has brought us to know the true Gospel and to receive Christ as our Lord and Savior. We have learned to know the true God, thanks to the fact that constantly we have been exhorted to read the Scriptures and recognize that the irresistible grace of God is the one who preserves us and makes us to persevere by standing in Christ despite the fact that we are unworthy sinners. (Pr 30:5)
The Lord has showed us His grace and mercy by teaching us through our pastors, elders, and leaders to pray and rest and trust in Him at every moment. In the middle of tribulations, we have been highly provided for and sustained from the Lord in supernatural ways. We have experienced the love and care of Christ by using the congregation of our church as an instrument of His divine grace. (Jn 16:33)
Now we can experience the peace and joy of living a Gospel-Centered Life. With broken and humbled hearts, we thank God for having the undeserved privilege of being part and to serve in a biblical church with a sound doctrine where all the glory and honor is for Jesus Christ our Lord. (Col 1:15-23)
Thank you for joining our church and for supporting the ministries in Nicaragua! I want to invite you to pray for physical and spiritual protection for our churches, pastors, and families. Please pray for that all these churches continue glorifying God and preaching the true Gospel.
I am 38 years old, and I am married with three children. I grew up in a catholic family where they taught me religious traditions: to serve others, to go to religious processions, and worship idols. Through reading God’s Word, I now realize that these things were mere lies.
On November 11th, 2013, God called me to recognize that all my religious actions offended Him. The Lord touched my heart, and I received Jesus as owner and Lord of my life. Since that day, my life has changed. I have learned to be obedient, to love my fellow Christian brothers, to be patient, and to have self-control.
My marriage was a disaster and before the best solution for me was to get a divorce or be a widow (I used to say), for my husband was a violent, harsh man because of his addiction to alcohol. However, through the Wonderful Grace of God and His mercy, my marriage has been reestablished, and God is teaching me to forgive every day and to be a submissive woman to my husband as his Word commands us to be in Colossians 3:18, 1 Peter 3:1.
I have also learned to love Christ more than my own extended family, something that is contrary to Chinandega’s tradition, where they place more importance upon caring for the extended family than the husband/wife, kids, or even Christ.
Harold José Mantilla and his family
I am 47 years old and was born in Matagalpa, in the northern of part Nicaragua. I was a lost man in this world. My life had no direction. It was filled with failure after failure. I was without a family, was exceedingly proud, and was a vile man with great anger and resentment in my heart. I did not know Christ. I was a Catholic where I only knew that God exists and that Christ was crucified on a cross by the Romans. However, through Petra Bible Church, I heard the gospel of Christ being preached that told me who God is and the true reason Jesus was sent to the earth. It is in this way that I understood what was happening with my life because it allowed me to see with God’s Word that I was a sinner and that I was spiritually dead.
Through Petra Bible Church, God taught me that Jesus was the answer for my life, and it was in His Word where I could believe to be a new man, leading me to repentance and asking forgiveness for my sin against a Holy God.
In my 16 months of being in the church, my life is different. It has been a wonderful change. God restored my family to me after 26 years of being unfaithful and unloving to my wife and my daughters. We became married because I considered that marriage was what men should do. However, I am now set free to love, and God has restored my marriage by His love. Today, I have my spouse who also loves Christ. My children and me serve as a family to Christ in the church. As his body, we are committed to Christ and the church.
I thank God for having established a church in Matagalpa, for teaching us sound doctrine, where everything leads us to Jesus Christ and to praise and glorify God.
Note: Since Harold and his family belonged to the church; they have faithfully served in the church. Harold is the audio manager, and he is seen as a future elder of the church. His wife is a teacher of children along with their daughters; one is part of the worship team, while the other serves in the children’s ministry.Testimonies