Testimony Video

My Testimony and Call to Ministry

I first would like to thank you for taking the time to review my Testimony and the account of how God called me into the ministry. As you know, my name is Daniel Scott Sutton. I had the privilege of being born into a godly family that was dedicated to the Lord and to the ministry. I was born on Sunday, May 31, 1992. By the next Sunday I attended my first church service as a one-week old infant. My parents attended Mansfield Baptist Temple under Pastor Dale Adkins. I was involved in Sunday school and Vacation Bible School from the earliest time I can remember. My parents were firm believers of being at every service and event.

My salvation did not come after years of rebellion and running from God. I was saved at the age of 4 years old. This is unusual I know, but as a four-year-old boy, I was just as much a sinner as anyone else. (Just ask my parents!) Four years old is a hard age to remember. I do not have much memory of anything else during that time period, but I do remember the night I got saved like it was yesterday. We lived in Mansfield, Ohio, in an older two story house. My parents and younger sister had bedrooms upstairs, while I was left alone on the bottom floor. The night I received Christ as my Savior the thunder and lightning was pounding outside of my window. As I lay in my bed, scared to move, I remember having the thought that if I died in this storm that I would go to Hell. Apparently, I had been listening to my Sunday school teacher! In my bed on that stormy night, I remember praying to God and telling Him I was a sinner, I was sorry for my sin, and that I needed him to forgive me. I remember the exact words that I prayed that night. After I prayed I ran to the foot of the stairs and yelled up to my Mom. At that time she was 9 months pregnant with my youngest sister. I told her that I had just asked Jesus into my heart. Expecting her to run down excited, I distinctly remember her telling me to go back to bed and wait until my dad got home. He was working third shift at the time so he usually got home early in the morning. I wanted to give specific details to assure you that this salvation decision was not forced upon me or something that I have just been led to believe. One fact that always has been reassuring to me is that I do not remember being baptized. I have seen the pictures, but that memory apparently was not as important to me. But the day I was saved will always be in my heart and mind. That was October 8, 1996, only two days before my youngest sister was born. (Another event I don’t remember from that time.) I did get assurance of my salvation at 12 during a Neighborhood Bible Time Rally. I doubted that a four year old could really understand. Looking back, I know I was saved at four, but that night I got assurance helped me to move forward in my Christian life.

Since that time, I have always wanted to be in the ministry. As a Christian I could not think of a better way to serve my Lord. So at the age of 10, I surrendered to God’s will for my life. At that point I told everyone that I met that I was going to be a missionary to Australia. Missions has always been a passion and desire of mine. That being said, I did not always live as a Christian young man should. I knew when I graduated high school that everyone expected me to go to Bible College. I remembered surrendering to the Lord, but to be honest that was the thing that I feared the most. I wanted what I perceived as a normal life—a farmer or a pilot. I tried to bargain with God by surrendering to Missions Aviation, but it was just my way of running from what I truly knew God wanted for me. I attended The Crown College of the Bible my freshman year, and things did not go well. I was running from God’s will, and my parents knew it. Within my first semester of Bible College, I was suspended. I finished the year at Crown and decided to go home for the summer to work. While working at McDonald’s, I was involved in a pretty bad accident on my way home from work one night. I was doing my own thing—I had the nice truck, the job, I was going to “Bible College”—but I was as far from God as I had ever been. The truck I was driving that night had been a gift from my grandparents. They told me that if I ever ran from God that I was supposed to give it back. Well, that night God took the truck that I was unwilling to return. I knew the instant that that drunk driver hit me that God wanted my attention, and He had it. That accident led to the chain of events that had me enrolled at West Coast Baptist College the next semester. I had never been to California, and I had NO money, but I knew it was what God was leading me to do. While attending WCBC, I began getting my life back in line with God’s will for me. My sophomore year I surrendered to God’s call to preach. It was during a Student Revival Meeting as Brother Abram Thomas preached that I bowed my head and my will to God. I also met Heather Dunn, my future wife, that year. My junior year was when I first heard of the country of Nicaragua. I honestly had no idea where that was, but always having a heart for missions, my interest was piqued. I began to learn more about Nicaragua. It seemed that everywhere I went this place called Nicaragua was coming up more and more. That year Pastor Chappell sent a mission team to Managua, Nicaragua to help with a Bible College being built. I knew that I needed to go on that trip. However, I could not even keep up with a school bill. How was I going to afford this trip? God took care of that by providing a friend of my girlfriend (Heather) who offered to pay for the entire trip. That week I spent in Nicaragua changed my life. I had been on Missions Trips before to Brazil and Puerto Rico, but I fell in love with the country of Nicaragua. I felt at home while I was there, and I developed a burden for the people. Since the day that I left that place, I have had a desire and a passion to go back. That passion has never left me the past 4 years. I know that Nicaragua is where God is leading my family. As a Bible College student, you hear about the difference between a Burden and a Call. I knew I was burdened, but how do you know if you’re called? You just know…right? Well at least that is what everyone I asked told me. I began to pray and fast to see if God would call me to Nicaragua. It was probably about a year that I prayed. Whenever someone would ask what I was going to do after graduation, I would always reply, “I am praying about being a missionary to Nicaragua.” I was always “Praying about it”– the Baptist answer to everything we are unsure of. Well one Sunday night, Pastor Chappell was preaching on Paul and the Macedonian Call from Acts 16. The main point I remember from that message was Pastor Chappell pointing out the fact that Paul just decided that the vision was from God, and he just WENT! That night I prayed and surrendered to go to the Mission Field of Nicaragua. God was telling me to stop praying about it and commit to going. Since that night everything has been in preparation for getting to the Field.

Currently we are serving as Youth Pastor at Victory Baptist Church in Fresno, California under Pastor Rick Owens. After graduation a professor asked if we would be willing to assist a church while we were still living in Lancaster. Of course he left out the little detail that this particular church was 3.5 hours away. We walked in the first Sunday and fell in love with this church family. God allowed us to drive up every Sunday for 9 months while Heather finished college. After she graduated, we made the move to Fresno. Since then God has blessed us with a son named Jackson and a little girl named Adaelynn! We have spent the last 6 years gaining invaluable ministry experience and been actively involved in the following ministries:

  • Youth Pastor

  • Children's Ministries

  • Counseling (youth/adults)

  • Discipleship (youth/adults)

  • Bus Ministry

  • Soulwinning

  • Nursing Home

  • Preaching/Teaching

Heather’s Testimony and Calling

I was raised in a Christian home and went to church every Sunday, Wednesday night and whenever else the doors were open. I grew up hearing the gospel but never fully understood it until the night my dad took me aside and led me to the Lord. On Friday night, June 22, 2001, he took me into my bedroom and showed me from the Bible how I could know for sure I was going to heaven. I attended Christian school throughout my middle school and high school years. I also went to Christian camps every summer that helped strengthen my walk with Christ. Camp is actually where I first surrendered my life to the Lord. Once in high school, I started to genuinely seek God for what He would have me to do with my life. I prayed and read books about following the will of God, and I realized that God wanted me to go into some kind of ministry for His work. I struggled to find the right college to prepare for the ministry, but through much praying and visiting many different colleges, God led me to West Coast Baptist College in Lancaster, California.

At West Coast, I completed the four year Church Ministries degree. God began to grow my heart for His work while attending school. One ministry I was actively involved in was the bus ministry. It moved my heart to have a burden for children and lost souls. I met Dan Sutton my freshman year and our relationship began developing during our time at college. He was a missions major, and that fact was extremely difficult for me to accept. It seemed God was calling me to be his wife. During my sophomore year, I heard a chapel message by Brother Tim Ruhl. God broke my heart, and I gave everything to the Lord, even if that meant being a missionary. He spoke on Hebrews 11, and said: “Faith is going to a place where you cannot see or don’t understand, and all you can do is trust God.” I then, fully surrendered to go wherever He wanted. My true calling is to fully follow my husband wherever the Lord leads him. Dan and I graduated, married, and still continue in ministry today. God called us to work at Victory Baptist Church in Fresno, CA as we wait on God’s timing to go to the mission field. We are gaining experience under the leadership of Pastor Rick Owens while working with the teenagers and children of the church.