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To The Embarrassed Man, Who Stuttered… Thank You!

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To The Embarrassed Man, Who Stuttered… Thank You!

 No one knows your name.

You came out of nowhere. You stopped when you saw the car teetering on the edge of the cliff with the front tires dangling out into space.

A young man sat behind the wheel with his foot on the brake desperately trying to keep the vehicle from moving forward. Only a wrecker could pull the car back onto the road. His friends had gone to get one.

Uncertainty showed in your body language. You knew you couldn’t do anything for the car, but yet you came closer. You walked with your head down and only glanced up to make sure you were walking in the right direction.

When you arrived at the driver’s window, you dug into your pocket and pulled out what looked like an old and well-worn Gospel Tract.

You were nervous and stuttered badly as you handed the tract to the Catholic boy behind the wheel.

It seemed like it took you forever to say, ‘I want you to read this.”

The young man thanked you and watched as you shuffled out of his life. But he never forgot you.

He wondered why the tract you had given was old and not new. Was it your personal favorite or was it the last one you had?

What You Didn’t Know!

You didn’t know that the young man had been raised Catholic.

You didn’t know that he had been a gang leader in Los Angeles and a fugitive from justice as well.

You didn’t know that he wanted to turn his life around.

You didn’t know that he would read your old tract slowly taking in every word.

You didn’t know that when the tract talked about the coming of the Lord and asked the question, “Are you ready?” that the young man realized he wasn’t ready.

You didn’t know that you were the first person to ever make him think about his soul being lost and that he needed the Lord.

You didn’t know that he prayed, “God if there is more for me from You, then I want it. If it is real, I want it.”

What You Never Knew!

The power of a single tract.

The young man soon visited an Assemblies Of God Church in Fresno, California.

Rev. Charles Price preached him to the altar that night and he received the Holy Ghost speaking in tongues.

What You Couldn’t Have Known!

The past caught up with him and he went to San Quentin Prison.

He regularly attended a Bible Study group.

His cellmate was a backslider from a Trinitarian church and he once had the Holy Ghost.

The cellmate would watch the others in the Bible Study group but never join in.

One day the cellmate received a tract from his wife about Acts 2:38. She had just been baptized in Jesus Name and wanted him to be as well.

The backslidden cellmate didn’t want the tract, so he gave it him.

What You May Never Know!

The young man you gave the tract to, read this 2nd tract and received a revelation of the Oneness of God and the importance of Jesus Name baptism, and was thrilled with the new knowledge.

He preached his first sermon in the prison yard. “Though Thy Sins Be As Scarlet, They Shall Be White As Snow!”

After being released, he went into the Army and searched for two years for someone to baptize him.

He found that place in Christ Church, Oregon City, Oregon. The Pastor, Andrew Baker baptized him in Jesus Name.

His family disowned him for leaving the Catholic Church.

He married the most lovely and godly young woman you could ever hope to find. They had five children who also were baptized in Jesus Name and filled with the Holy Ghost.

He pastored nine churches, six of which he started.

He evangelized everywhere for twenty-five years and pastored twenty-five years as well.

His sermons were life changing and unforgettable.

All who have his tapes and CD’s still treasure them.

You would have cried and rejoiced listening to him preach under the anointing.

You would have cried listening to him and his wife sing.

His son became a preacher.

Of his four daughters, one died in her teens, the others are involved in ministry.

Two of his son’s in law are preachers.

He has eleven grandchildren who all have received the Holy Ghost and have all been involved in ministry of some kind.

Five became pastors.

Of his nineteen great grand children, those who are old enough have been baptized in Jesus Name and filled with the Holy Ghost.

The oldest ones are presently preparing themselves for the world of the Lord.

What I Want You To Know!

He never forgot your willingness to witness, in spite of your stuttering and embarrassment.

You were the first one to ever witness to him, even though you simply handed him an old tract.

He’s not here today to say thank you.

He died on September 11, 1994. His wife, Content died on January 13, 2012.

So I would like to thank you for him!

You see, I’m his son.

His name was Carl Joseph Ballestero.

Written by Martyn Ballestero

September 26, 2013 at 11:01 am

Posted in Witness

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11 Responses

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  1. I heard him tell the story. Thank for the remnder.

    Steve Epley

    September 26, 2013 at 11:23 am

  2. Thank you for your dad’s testimony !!!! That touched my heart!! I am so blessed to have know them and to have gone to church with them when I was a little girl!!! Your whole family has been blessed because of your parents love for Truth!!
    Hope all is well with you and your wife!!! We miss you both out here in the great NW!!! Hope to see you soon!!

    Love, Mike and Paula


    September 26, 2013 at 11:23 am

  3. Very powerful, Brother Ballestero! Thank you so much for sharing this! Who would have thought, just a simple act of outreach would affect so many? Really makes me think about every small church card I’ve handed out, every flyer, every smile in a grocery store…seems like such a small drop in a bucket, but who knows what God can do when we are faithful to do a work for Him, no matter how “small.”


    September 26, 2013 at 12:32 pm

  4. Thank you for sharing this – you just never know whose life (or how many lives) you will touch when reaching out to others with this life-giving message!

    Peter Connell

    September 26, 2013 at 1:51 pm

  5. This story makes me cry every time. What a debt we owe to a man with a burden for souls. I pray for that same burden! Thank you!!


    September 26, 2013 at 10:25 pm

  6. No matter how small a word it is it can make all the difference in the world! Because the man who stuttered had the courage to witness to the young man on the cliff, that man preached to my father and mother and they were saved and in turn I heard the message! Can I just add my own thank you to yours, please? It has made all the difference in my life as well!

    Crystal (Morris) Smith

    September 27, 2013 at 11:28 pm

  7. This is so beautiful! Never know how powerful something as simple as a tract can be.Thank you so much for sharing.

    Cindi Goodeaux

    September 27, 2013 at 11:35 pm

  8. Beautiful. Thank you for the reminder that just one small gesture can change a life for an eternity.

    Alan's Views

    October 8, 2013 at 4:10 pm

  9. I’m reading this late but I want to thank you for reminding me again of the small thread that my own destiny hung by! I am so blessed to have had the privilege to be saved and called to preach under your father and then to also have you as my pastor. How wonderful God is to reach like he does to save a soul and then through that deed, save others like me! I’m eternally grateful!

    Bro. Dennis Morris

    October 15, 2013 at 10:24 pm

  10. Beautiful … thank you for sharing!

    Ballestero Anthony

    October 22, 2013 at 9:47 pm

  11. Glory to Jesus!

    Del-Evan Canoy Cosep

    November 16, 2013 at 10:18 am

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