The excitement leading up to this day had arrived. The preparation had been done, the invitations were out, our bags were packed and we were ready to go! On our way, we discussed how this would be a day forever marked, forever remembered. We encouraged each other to soak it all in and embrace every detail of the day. We did and would like to share our day with you.
On Sunday, March 22nd, the first taste of Spring in 2015, my girls and I publicly proclaimed Christ as our Savior and Lord and were baptized. This is not our first time to know Him. In fact, our entire lives we have been following Him. I was born and raised in the Methodist Church and my parents baptized me and my sister when I was four years old. I am forever grateful for my parents raising me in the church and teaching me who Christ is and who I am in Him. My girls were also baptized in the church as infants, much younger than I was, and they too were taught about the Father’s love. Catherine and Lexi went through confirmation just like I did when I was 12 years old. They confirmed their belief in Christ but there was something missing for them. They desired to be baptized like Jesus.
“Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.”Then John consented. As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “this is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:13-17
When we moved, Ashley was concerned about what this meant for her as she was not going to be able to go through confirmation like her sisters. We told her not to worry, once we got settled we would visit with our new church and make sure she was able to proclaim Christ for herself. She was relentless in her pursuit. She never tired of asking. We never grew tired of her asking, and it actually stirred my heart towards being baptized too. After a few sermons at our new church, Currey Creek, the desire continued to grow. Our Pastor recalled his baptism down to the smell of the chlorine in the water. I wanted to remember mine, but I just couldn’t as I was too young. So I visited with Ryan about me being baptized with the girls, and he was excited for us. We took the next step in contacting the church to set up a time for us to come in and meet with our Pastor. All five of us went and sat with him for almost two hours. It was his first official time to meet us and get to know our family, and we really enjoyed getting to know him. He asked us about our backgrounds and our beliefs. He was surprised to learn that mine and Ryan’s background had brought us to Currey Creek. To be honest, I was surprised too. When we began visiting churches we sat down as a family and discussed what we were looking for in our new church home. We weren’t looking at the names on the buildings and the religion in which they practiced, we were in pursuit of Jesus. We wanted to feel His presence and belong to a body of believers that were just as hungry for Him as we were, and we found that in Currey Creek. The Holy word of God is alive in this church and every week Ryan and I feel stretched in new ways. Our girls are growing too. I am grateful that at their youthful ages they have a deep desire to be there with us each week. PRAISE THE LORD!
The sermon before our big day still gives me chill bumps. Guess what it was about…being baptized!!! I wish I could retell it to you and you experience it just like we did. If I try to repeat what was taught, I know I will miss the mark in many ways, and it was too good not to share it thoroughly. I encourage you to carve out 30 minutes of time to watch the video message. It is exactly why we said yes, “I Have Decided.”
Here’s our big take away from the message:
- God revealed our NEED!
- God changed our hearts!
- God enables our belief!
- God is transforming our lives!
When we arrived at the service we took a family photo so we could remember our special family that came to support us. We got our seats and the first song we worshiped to was an old blue-grass hymn that we don’t typically sing. I felt Him so close as we sang the words to “I’ll Fly Away.” My favorite verse and chorus to the song says:
“When the shadows of this life have gone,
I’ll fly away.
Like a bird from prison bars have flown,
I’ll fly away.
Oh, I’ll fly away, O Glory,
I’ll fly away.
When I die, Hallelujah, bye and bye,
I’ll fly away.”
Just as fitting was our closing hymn of “Amazing Grace:”
“Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me…
I once was lost but now am found,
was blind, but now I see.
Twas Grace that taught…
my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear…
the hour I first believed.”
Do you believe? Do you recognize your deep need of a Savior that offers grace to a broken world, to redeem us and wash us clean from our sins? When I asked my baby girl what her favorite part of her day was it brought tears to my eyes. She said, “When I came out of the water mommy, I felt FREE.” What a profound truth! There couldn’t be a better way to describe the day! She is free, all my babies are free, I am free. Are you FREE? Have you decided to accept Christ as your Lord and Savior? Good Friday is a week away, the day Christ was crucified and buried. His act of obedience to the will of the Father was due to His deep love for us! He LOVES you! He is our SAVING GRACE!
“For God SO LOVED the world the he GAVE his one and only Son, that whoever BELIEVES in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us your Son! Thank you for revealing our need for a Savior! Thank you for changing our hearts, enabling our belief and transforming our lives. Thank you that Good Friday is not the end of the story! On the third day He arose from the dead and ascended into Heaven and sat at the right hand of the Father! Easter is coming! Lord, your perfect timing and attention to details will forever remind me of our baptism’s. I love that we too were buried like Christ and RAISED to walk in the newness of life! We are FREE! We will one day fly away and I am beyond grateful that you saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, I was blind but now I see! I love you Father forever and ever! Continue to use me to bare your light to your world and may many many more come into the fold of your eternal Kingdom. In your Son’s most Holy name I pray, Amen!