I am married to my beautiful wife Elsa and pastor a church bi-vocationally in the Northern part of Ontario, Canada. I have embraced the doctrines of grace early on in my Christian walk and have a deep love for my Lord and Saviour who shed His blood for me.
The Lord saved me back 36 years ago, and throughout all these years, what I find truly amazing is God’s faithfulness toward me in all the highs and lows of my life. I have been able to overcome by His grace. Faithful He remains!
My testimony reflects God’s saving power and His sovereignty regarding our salvation. I grew up French speaking in a good Roman Catholic family. In my teenage years, my life became meaningless and I considered ending it on many occasions. On three occasions the Lord intervened at the lowest points of my life: “Hang on René! I’ve got something for you!” I reasoned that this “intervention” could have only come from God, since I could not produce such a thing and that Satan (if he existed) would most certainly not be cheering for me. I concluded that I must be “destined” for something which could only come from God Himself. I had also come under great conviction that I had sinned against the one and only true God. I had no peace and desperately sought how to get right with God.
In time, I found people handing out gospel tracts on the streets of Toronto, where I was attending college. After several months, I had accumulated a shoe box full of tracts. Many tracts were also picked up from off the ground. I took the time to read every tract and compared them to my French Catholic Bible. I also found many street preachers proclaiming a simple gospel message. Since I was aware that many cults existed and “half-cults”, I could not risk open conversations with any of those doing street witnessing. What I needed to discover had to come from God directly. I prayed the “sinner’s prayer” on a few occasions, but I approached it as a “magical formula.” Finally, having come to the end of my rope, I surrendered my all to Christ. After my conversion experience, the Lord led me to a Christian who brought me to his church.
As a teen, I was a professing atheist for about 3 years, but it was the Lord who opened my understanding and convinced me of His existence. I have maintained, and will continue to maintain, that I had nothing to do with my salvation. The sovereign Lord is the one who had set me apart from the foundation of the world that I would one day come to know Him.
About four years after coming to faith, the Lord opened a door for me to study at Toronto Baptist Seminary back in late 80’s. Subsequent to obtaining a BTh in 1991, my circumstances prevented me from pursuing a Master’s degree. In 2009, I began online seminary studies at a Canadian school in Western Canada. But after a few years, because their course schedules no longer fit my own time schedules, I realized that transferring to a different school was something to consider. A member of my church referred me to Reformed Baptist Seminary and have been studying there since 2016.
I am extremely thankful to Dr. Robert Gonzales and the faculty of this great school for their commitment to the TRUTH. It is vitally important for Christians to build up a solid foundation early on in their Christian walk. RBS will help you to become established in the essentials of the faith. I highly recommend RBS as it is a school committed the teach the whole counsel of God, in the Reformed-Calvinistic traditions.