“January 21 is this man’s new birthday!” said Ronald Brumble, security manager for Samaritan’s Purse Haiti. One of his security guards, Fenel Calixte, had accepted Christ into his heart earlier that morning. Fenel has worked with Samaritan’s Purse for four years and attended daily devotionals with the rest of his co-workers during that time. By bringing Fenel to Samaritan’s Purse, God began pursuing Fenel many years before he accepted Him as Savior.
When asked why he decided to come to Christ, Fenel explained that he had dreamed about dancing in a Raa Raa Band, which is voodoo practice in Haiti.
“In my dream I was running late to work,” he said. “I called my supervisor and said that I couldn’t come to work. My supervisor told me that he knew I couldn’t come to work because I was at Raa Raa. My supervisor warned me that I could be hurt in that circumstance. He said, ‘If you give your life to Christ, all will be good. You can see that I have given my life to Christ, and I am well with Christ.’”
When Fenel woke up, he was in awe. In response to his dream, he made the decision to accept his Savior.
On January 25, Fenel was baptized outside of the Samaritan’s Purse base in Haiti. The entire Samaritan’s Purse Haiti family joined him on the beach, singing praises to the Lord in Creole. Pastor Paulo and Pastor Pierre, who work with Samaritan’s Purse, prayed with him beforehand, and then Pastor Pierre guided him to the edge of the ocean. Clouds scattered the sky, and the sea was a clear aqua. All of his newfound brothers and sisters in Christ were present for this pivotal moment in his life.
Pastor Pierre led Fenel into the waves while the Samaritan’s Purse Haiti family continued to worship. When Fenel’s head emerged from the water, there were shouts of joy and people crying, “Hallelujah!” Once he was back on the beach, everyone welcomed him with hugs and handshakes of congratulations.
“I have never felt such a peace,” Fenel said. “I was already thinking of leaving voodoo. The way that [the people at] Samaritan’s Purse treated me encouraged me to give my life to Christ.”
From the many voices in worship to the rhythmic sound of the waves crashing, there was evidence of God’s presence everywhere. Being baptized brings newness. We are made new because of Christ’s love, and baptism is our public proclamation of the new life God has given us. In response to God’s love, we answer, “Lord, I’m on your team, and I’m not turning back.”
When I was baptized, I felt an overwhelming sense of peace come over me; time was suspended underneath the water. As a child of God, I’m constantly enveloped by God—I’m in the middle of his embrace each and every day. I’m thankful that God pursues all of our hearts, and he doesn’t relent until we accept His invitation to become a part of His kingdom.
“Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name” (Psalm 100:3-4, NKJV).