5 minutes with Steve Ramirez

At age 33, Steve Ramirez walked into Immanuel Baptist Church Fort Stockton for the first time and, within a few months, accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior. Later, he began helping teach an adult Sunday school class and became a deacon. He served as the church’s youth minister and eventually became the pastor, a position he has held the past 16 years. Ramirez also serves on the executive board of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. He and his wife, Becky, have three children and four granddaughters.

What is something you’ve been able to celebrate at Immanuel Baptist Church Fort Stockton recently? 

After COVID, attendance dropped and remained low for quite a long time. We wondered if things would get back to the way they were. Now, as many have made their way back, we have also been blessed to have many newcomers join us, which is very encouraging. But it’s just as encouraging to see the hunger for God and His Word and the love that is shown to God and to one another, and the unity within the church and with God. 

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in your ministry lately?

As a bivocational pastor who works seven days a week, time has always been a challenge: making sure I have my time with my Lord in prayer, time to read His Word, time with family, time with work, and everything else in between. Trying to balance everything out is a challenge, but God is good and always makes it work out.

What is a lesson you’ve learned to this point in your ministry you know you’ll never forget?  

Staying in a close relationship with the Lord is the most important thing. There are always going to be challenges, problems, and different situations that come up in the ministry, but we need to stay focused and not forget what we are called to do. Keep the main thing, the main thing. Stay close to God with much prayer and listen to His guidance in all matters.

What is one thing you’d like to see God do specifically at your church this year?

This year and every year, my main desire is that everyone who walks into IBC who does not know the Lord would come to know Him. That we all be prepared to meet Him when that day comes. That we all may have an urgency to let others know about salvation through Christ, for without Him we have nothing. 

How can other churches of the SBTC be praying for you?

I ask for discernment to be able to hear the Lord clearly. For wisdom and courage to fulfill what He has called me to do. To be able to lead the beautiful people of IBC, that we all may become more and more like Christ. To God be the glory!

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