I talked a little about my baptism when discussing my testimony, but really I wanted to go through and talk a little more about what led me to wanting to do it, as well as what has happened in my life since then.
I was baptized on February 19, 2017. I only made the decision to do it a week and a half before the actual date, mainly because I was wrestling with the idea of recommitting myself to Him, with the enemy very strongly in my heart saying I didn’t need to and that I was fine where I was. For a while, I listened to the enemy, thinking that I wasn’t good enough to recommit myself and to turn myself over to Him completely. Knowing what I know now in my heart, this was a ridiculous assumption to make, but it was extremely present and in the forefront of my mind and heart for quite a while.
Eventually, I was sitting in youth worship, listening to the lyrics of the song and just in silent prayer, focusing my heart on what He wanted me to hear and making sure that what I was hearing was from God, not from the enemy. In this silent pause, I just heard Him say very clearly that I was, in fact, good enough for Him and that He wanted me to take that next step and give an outward commitment to Him in front of my church.
Speaking with our youth pastor, he presented baptism to me in a way I hadn’t thought of. He related it back initially to the flood where God destroyed all sin and cruelty in the world. He then brought it into the New Testament and John the Baptist where John discusses baptism saying, “After me comes the one more powerful than I, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” (Mark 1:7-8. NIV) It was a good reminder that there is nothing magical with the water involved in baptism, in fact it merely was in a kiddie pool/spa thing. What it represented, however, was the symbolic cleansing of sins through the Holy Spirit and renewal of life in Him.
At the time of my baptism, I was kinda awkward standing up on the stage with everyone else involved. Next to me was our Young Adults leader who happened to be there, and it wasn’t until we were praying and he put his hand on my shoulder that it really hit me I was giving my life, this time on my own volition, to God and that I was going to be renewed in Him. From then until the actual baptism, I found myself fighting back quite a few tears through everyone else’s baptisms. When it was my turn, however, there were no tears, more like relief and a weight being lifted when it happened, following roughly twenty minutes of cold before I was able to change.
In the month following my baptism, I have noticed a definite change in how I try and interact with people, as well as how I have focused my life on the whole. I’m not getting angry with people as much when things go wrong between our interactions. I still get frustrated when things happen not according to my plan, but I am reminded that He has a plan and that He probably is putting these road blocks in my way for a reason. My friend told me a couple of weeks ago, “Nowhere in the bible does it talk about people being blessed when everything is going right in their lives, but they are blessed when they are going through trials and are walking with God throughout that time.” I believe that following my baptism, I am growing in an ability to focus my life in spending more time in His presence, and that is allowing me to have a more peaceful demeanor and finding the beauty in whatever situation or place I am put in.
Anyways, those are my thoughts on my baptism and a brief reflection of how it has changed my life for the better following it. I hope soon to be able to talk more about my walk and about whatever is on my mind!