The Lord does hear our prayer and our cries out for him. Through mentors and discipleship, I have learned that miracles aren’t just something that happen to you, they are something that happens through you.
Just over a year ago I was asking questions that no one person could give me answers to… Do I have what it takes to be a devoted husband? What does that even look like? Do I have what it takes to be loving father? With my past failures, do I have what it takes to run my current business successfully? Growing up as a third culture kid, and no father figure to connect with at age 40, I felt lost, alone, and without identity.
One day, a “below the radar”, faith-filled conversation with a mentor changed everything for me. It’s interesting how our words can plant the seeds for impact that miracles are made of. A close and trusted friend, Tom Telesco, said to me, “Pablo, I don’t have the answers to what you’re asking, but my wife and I prayed about it, and we’d love to send you to a men’s retreat where you may be able to find the answers you seek.”
After sharing Tom and Tonya’s generous offer with my wife, I let her know the reasons why I should not go: I need to stay home to run the business; we have a three month old and what kind of father leaves for six days with no contact? We only have my mother to help and she works a full time job.
My wife, Andreina looked at me as she held our little Luca, and said, “It’s for those exact reasons, of why you have to go.” Now I knew I married up… but up until that point, I didn’t know how far up!
One month later I boarded a flight from BWI to Dallas and got on a bus with 20 strangers to embark on a journey to get my answers, having no clue what God had in store for me.
It was on that retreat when I first heard the Lord’s voice… it was in a farm field approximately 500 miles north of Dallas, in Kingfisher, Oklahoma. After I cried out God’s name in search of him, he spoke to me instantly through my tears, bringing me to my knees, and overflowed me with more love than I have ever felt… right in that very moment. I could feel his caring embrace, and in that encounter he assured me that he was always there for me and I had nothing to be ashamed of, for my debts had been paid and I was going to be an incredible father, husband, and child of God.
I realized sometimes we need to sacrifice and go on a journey past what we feel comfortable doing in order to receive the greatest gifts God has to offer. I had been saved in a field 1500 miles from home… and it changed everything. In a sermon at Grace, I once heard Pastor Tae say, “Pain is positioned for purpose.” And that has stuck with me, because I used to believe that pain was designed to keep us stuck.
I still have a long way to go in my faith walk, but there have been some impactful upgrades in my life. For starters, I arrived back in Maryland with 20 new brothers in Christ that I can call close friends. My family has a man covered in the armor of God, and my heart is a pilot light that has been turned up to full blast for the Lord. This new path and perspective on life, love, and manhood has revealed to me my purpose: to advance the Kingdom of God by sharing my testimony and the gospel through me onto others.
Grace Community Church has been a blessing to me and my family in many ways, but let me share just this one. My great friend Brandy Edwards, who I met through the book study of Acts, shared his testimony with me and about his baptism held here. His words and heart about it planted a seed that led me here ready to be #dunked to proclaim my faith and love in the Lord Jesus.
My story has been a miracle that has happened through other people and their words. I hope my story has in some way inspired you to share yours and be a light for those lost in the darkness and may be seeking the love, forgiveness, and answers that only our Heavenly Father possesses.
— Pablo Troncoso, Being Baptized April 2019
If you’re interested in being baptized at Grace, click here to learn more and to sign up to attend our next Baptism Workshop.