OFWs in Bahrain Receive a Valuable Lesson
A former Protestant has a life-changing experience after joining the Church Of Christ and shares the impact of the Executive Minister’s visit to Bahrain.Show/Hide Transcript
[On-screen text graphics]
The small island country of Bahrain sits off the western shores of the Persian Gulf. Temperatures here reach up to 41 C (105 F) daily. 1,639,876 people currently live in Bahrain with 60,000 of those being Filipinos as Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW).
Kirby Sarmiento: I have been here in Bahrain for probably 12 or 13 years. When I arrived here in Bahrain, the weather was extremely hot. You could boil water just by leaving it outside the house. That is why when you decide to come to Bahrain, you must be prepared; make sure you are hydrated properly. You wouldn’t know when you’ll feel dizzy; when heatstroke would hit you out of nowhere.
My mother died when I was seven years old. Those were trying times for me. In my time of need, I didn’t know whom I could turn to; whom I could run to. I promised myself that I would lift myself up from that situation. When I started to support myself, having a job was very important to me.
My first goal is to be successful to have a better life. I truly wanted to provide for my family. For me, keeping my job is very important. Having an income means I can get what I want. I didn’t have time about faith. I was inactive in my religion as a Protestant. I applied as a draftsman hoping my salary would increase. I was at ease because it was good and stable considering it was a British company. So, my coworkers and I were saddened and shocked when we heard that effective immediately, they would shut our office down. The reason being that they needed to shut us down temporarily, but we knew that wasn’t the case. I was sad.
That time, I already have my family. We have our child. I didn’t have a budget to pay for the house and expenses such as food. If I didn’t have a job here in Bahrain, I would have gone back to the Philippines.
When I lost my job, I went to look for a religion because I had no one else to run to. I got acquainted with one of my flatmates here in Bahrain. She is a member of the Church Of Christ. When I found out that my flatmate was a member of the Church Of Christ, I approached her and told her I wanted to listen. I asked her how I could join and be a member of their Church.
Sister Cathy said, “Great timing! We are holding an evangelical mission. I’ll take you there.”
When I went there, I was amazed how the males and females were seated separately piqued my interest. I also noticed the dress code. I told myself, “So, this is the Church Of Christ. They are very organized.” As I listened to the preaching of the minister, I noticed that they base all their teachings on the Bible and not on mere opinions. Later on, I started undergoing doctrinal instructions. I would ask questions to the minister.
For example, I learned that there is only one true God and that the Lord Jesus Christ differs from the Father. It was a shock to me. The minister said, “I won’t be the one to answer that. Let’s read the answer from the Bible.” That’s when I decided that the path I was treading on is the right one.
[On-screen text graphics]
Gulf Hotel, Bahrain June 14, 2019
This indeed is why you should join us,
Here inside the Church Of Christ;
So through Jesus, you will be brought to
The Father whom we love,
And together we shall worship
In true service of our God.
[Video – Source: incmedia.org. Executive News]
Brother Eduardo V. Manalo: Do you need God’s blessings? You have to be inside the Church Of Christ. Are we the only ones who say that? No. We’re only following what the Bible is saying. That’s why we’re in the Church Of Christ.
The Bible is teaching us how we will be saved and receive God’s blessings. How will that happen? We need to be united in the same body, referring to the Church Of Christ. Others might think that the Church Of Christ refers to many different religions. It doesn’t. The Bible didn’t say many. What it teaches is “the same body,” Christ’s Church or the Church Of Christ. That is what people need so as to be saved, and receive God’s blessings.
Working is not bad, neither is providing for our needs. If we’re taking care of those things, what’s more, important according to Christ, as we read earlier, is to receive eternal life.
Kirby Sarmiento: I have had great changes in my life ever since I became a member of the Church Of Christ. Back when I wasn’t a member, I didn’t have that peace of mind. For example, the time when I lost my job here in Bahrain. I didn’t know which direction to take. It was different when I became a Church Of Christ member. I can cast all my worries to the Lord God. I can pray to Him and hold devotional prayers.
Brother Eduardo V. Manalo: We received God’s teachings through God’s messenger. We must continue to have faith in those teachings of God, as the apostles instructed us to do. So let’s never allow that we disobey any teaching or command of God. Because that is for our salvation.
That’s why we were called and elected—for us to obey God’s will and be worthy in our services to Him. What do the apostles tell us so that we may stand strong and firm in the teachings we have faith in? We’re told not to waste even a minute, not to squander the precious daylight hours. In what? In frivolity, indulgence, licentiousness, sleeping around, and dissipation.
A Church Of Christ member who’ll stand strong and firm to be saved on Judgment Day renews his life. Isn’t that our current campaign in the Church? Because we know that Judgment Day is near. The unusual things happening in the world are signs that Jesus is about to return. Christ will take those who will be saved and bring them to God. How will we be saved? We must stand strong and firm. We must be faithful. One who’s strong, firm, and faithful will not allow that he doesn’t lead the kind of life that God seeks from him. We must continue to uphold the renewal of life. When we do that, we can be sure that we will be strong and firm in our membership in the Church Of Christ.
Kirby Sarmiento: When I wasn’t part of any religion, my goal was to find a successful job so that I could help my family. But, when I joined the Church Of Christ and understood the teachings, it was instilled in my heart and mind that my faith is above anything else. Education is important. Work is important. But, those things will be given to you, just pray and believe and God will provide. Out of all things, my top priority is my Church Of Christ membership and especially my Church duties.
God tells us that the ones whom He will shelter, defend, protect are His followers who worship Him. That is why our worship services are very important. Whatever we may face, we should never let go of our duty to worship God—if we want to receive His help.
Brethren, do you have troubles in your life? If you want God to help you, do not forsake our worship services. Brethren, if we follow God, He will never forsake us. If we do not let go of our obligations to God, He will never leave us. God will shelter and help us. God will provide us with our needs when we call to Him and if we do not forsake our duties to Him.
Kirby Sarmiento: I’ve dedicated my whole life to my Church Of Christ membership. No matter what happens, even if I am persecuted by my own family, I will never leave the Church Of Christ. This is the true Church, and I fully believe until the end that I will be a Church Of Christ member.
May God help us be devoted to our worship services and life the way He wants us to. That way, we can receive God’s blessings and uphold our services to Him until we reach that promised salvation.
Kirby Sarmiento: Brother Eduardo is the one leading God’s nation to salvation. No matter the obstacle, he will overcome it, just to bring the good news of God’s word to the brethren.