Ramny Perez was born in the Dominican Republic and grew up in Florida and New York. He studied literature and philosophy at The City College of New York. He currently works as a insurance sales representative and is a full-time seminary student. He and his wife, Dayami, live in Louisville, Kentucky, and are members of Immanuel Baptist Church, where Ramny serves as an elder.
What do you do every day?
I work in sales. As soon as I get to work, I look through all my leads and tasks, determine a plan of attack for the day, and try to keep my inbox under control. I spend the rest of the day interacting with clients, and making and receiving calls. I’m also a full-time seminary student and an elder in my church. Most evenings I’m either taking classes, meeting with people for discipleship or counseling, or having people over.
As an image-bearer of God, how does your work reflect some aspect of God’s work?
In at least two ways: communicating with people and meeting their needs. In my sales work, I sit down with people, or talk to them on the phone, to figure out what kind of protection they need. Client needs vary, so I must listen well and address them clearly. That’s what I do as an elder, too—listening to people and speaking God’s truth to their situations. As God spoke the world into existence and upholds it by the word of his power (Heb. 1:3), so I—in a much smaller, yet beautiful way—get to reflect his image by speaking and bringing blessing to people in need.
How does your work give you a unique vantage point into the brokenness of the world?
With a growing family and a compensation that partially depends on commission, the temptation to use deceptive methods is real. When I’m sitting in front of a single mother who clearly needs life insurance, I could push her toward a policy I know might hurt her financially but give me a higher commission. Also, who ends up getting credit for a given sale can cause significant friction among coworkers. So a concern for justice and for relationships above things is essential in my job. As a Christian, though, my main consideration is that I’m a servant of Jesus. I have to ask myself whose interests I’m seeking first, and have an open-handed approach to all God gives or withholds.
Jesus commands us to “love our neighbors as ourselves.” How does your work function as an opportunity to love and serve others?
Recently, a very distraught lady in her 40s came into the office. She wanted to cancel her life insurance policy because she had become ill and unable to work. She has young children, and for months had had no income. Fortunately, as I explained to her, the policy we sold her allows us to cover her life insurance costs in case of illness. Also recently, in the case of a young gentleman unable to work due to a sudden mental disability, we were able to help him make his mortgage payments. Those are just two examples of how my job allows me to love and serve people going through difficult times, and to glorify God by doing it.
Editors’ note: TGCvocations is a weekly column that asks practitioners how they integrate their faith and their work. Interviews are condensed and edited.