Reinaldo Figueroa

Music leads to a lesson of grace for this OBU student.

On Bison Hill, imperfection has met up with grace in the life of Reinaldo Figueroa.

The Oklahoma Baptist University senior vocal performance major possessed a mountainous passion for music. However, he quickly discovered that the slightest miscue could plummet him into a valley of disappointment.

At OBU, he came to realize that God made the mountains and valleys, and he’s with us whether we’re on them or in them.

“I am a perfectionist,” said Figueroa who was born in Miami, Florida, and grew up in Cypress, Texas. “When you train in music, there will be many mistakes which can be quite discouraging for someone like me. In those moments, I try to take time to breathe and pray and always remember that we are not perfect creatures.”

The lesson learned stretches far beyond music.

“We will make mistakes all the time even when we try our hardest not to,” he said. “I am comforted by the fact that I am an imperfect being that will make mistakes along my journey towards Heaven, but I do it all for the glory of God. Just like 2 Corinthians 12 says, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’”

He learned of OBU at a college fair during his junior in high school in Texas. Figueroa was contacted by chair of the OBU Division of Music.

“Instantly, I knew that God was calling me to OBU,” he said.

But even the most obvious callings, need a little reinforcement.

“For me, the most reassuring thing was when I met my wife (Raelyn Williamson),” he said. “We were both music students in the same voice studio but didn’t really know each other. During my sophomore year, we started dating and then got married the summer after my junior year. When I met her, I knew that God brought me to OBU specifically for that reason.”

Before OBU, Figueroa was not a follower of Christ.

“I was a cultural Christian but was not involved in church nor did I read my Bible or pray that often,” he said. “The biggest change that has occurred within me has been my faith. I got baptized in the fall semester of my junior year. My eternity has been forever changed thanks to Christ-like professors and friends that have led me to Christ.”

That young man who wasn’t a follower of Christ before arriving at OBU, will now be teaching at a private Christian school in Sulphur, Oklahoma after graduation.

Currently, he is teaching voice through OBU’s Music Preparatory Department which serves the Shawnee area by providing high-quality musical instruction to pre-college and adult learners in the community.

Figueroa said this “is giving me much experience that will benefit me greatly in my career. My only career goal is to serve the Lord through music for as long as I am able.”

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