I know, shame on me, I didn’t post anything last week. But to make it up to you all, I am going to post three things (one today, one tomorrow, and one on Monday), so I hope you enjoy!
So as you can tell from the title I am now 19 and baptised!
Man I didn’t want to turn 19. I mean I can understand when you celebrate turning 18, 20, and 21, but 19 just seems like an odd year.
For my 18th birthday I had had two parties so originally when I was thinking about my 19th birthday, I hadn’t wanted to do anything. But then I realized, for my next four birthdays I will be away at college and a lot can change in four years. I realized that there are people here now in my life that I wanted to celebrate it with and that some of these people may not be in my life in four years, which is saddening but true. So I wanted to make the most of it.
So. I put together a last minute planned party. The party turned out to be so awesome! I had so much fun and I actually felt closer to the people that were there. I got to see some old friends and many of the people there this year were at my parties last year, but I felt like in the year from 18 to 19 I got closer to many of the people in my life and it felt great. And I am so thankful to God for that.
The party was two days before my actual birthday and on my actual birthday I got baptised.
Getting baptised was something I had had on my heart for a while, and when I found out my birthday was on a Sunday I wanted to do it on that day; I figured it’d be special and nice to be able to do that. But now I had to figure out the where and how.
For the past year or so my family was done church at home. We had been looking for a church and then had found one that we attended for three years but it closed down. It actually closed down the week or so that we were planning on joining. It was a weird turn of events and after that happened my family decided to spend some time together at home on Sundays and we did our own thing. That was great and we definitely grew together and learned new things, but after awhile I was craving fellowship. I wanted to be a big part of something, of one thing, not be a little of many things.
But in August my family and I started going to a church and I love it! It’s an amazing church and after beginning to go regularly I knew I wanted to get baptised there. But this church met in a public school (and there’s nothing wrong with that), I just wasn’t sure if they did baptism except in the summer. I knew that they had done a baptism Sunday in the late summer at a nearby pool, but that’s all I knew.
So in December, I asked the head pastor about it and he was like “yeah we have a baptism Sunday planned in January.” My first thought was “no way!” So I asked him when it was and it was actually planned the Sunday after my birthday. I tried not to let my hope sink and dared to ask if it was possible to do one the Sunday before the Sunday they had planned. I was relieved when the head pastor said sure it should be no problem to do it, he just had to ask the church they were borrowing the baptism tub from. I was so happy and so excited.
But with Christmas taking up a service and missing the first two services in January, I wasn’t sure if the whole baptism thing was still happening. I mean I definitely didn’t want to ask during Christmas time. So the Sunday before my birthday I asked again and he said oh yeah they said that’s fine, I’ll just check again. Later that week, actually the Saturday before, my dad gets an email saying everything is set and all my siblings can get baptised too if we wanted.
My first reaction was no way. I didn’t feel it would be as special and it was something very important to me that I had wanted to do. But I didn’t really say anything and tried to think about how actually doing that with all my siblings could be extremely special after all. And it was. The water was freaking cold though.
My dad actually baptised us, youngest to oldest as I requested. That felt really good. Lol moment: I forget to take a breath of air before going under water so when I was lifted out I was trying to catch my breath and make sure that my greatest fear hadn’t happened with that: a wardrobe malfunction in front of the whole church. But I was all good and so happy about that. But then the pastor wanted to pray over everyone and all I’m thinking is I want to dry off, I want to dry off. The experience was a great one and I would definitely recommend it to other Christians who haven’t done this yet. And it doesn’t matter the age.
The only sad thing about the experience is since it was last minute planned that my siblings were getting baptised, we didn’t really invite people, and there were so many people that would have loved to come. I mean I had talked to three friends about it and two of them came (including my boyfriend and his family). Another friend of ours tried to come but my brother told him a later time so he missed it but I was so grateful for the people who did come and was so glad they could share in that experience.
After everyone changed (I got to see what a public school middle school boys’ locker room looks like for the first time), everyone joined in for a great time of pictures. God is so good and I am so happy that my birthday dreams came true!
I wanted to leave you with a few Bible verses and quotes on baptism:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” Matthew 28:19-20.
“For by one Spirit we were all ba[tized into one body–whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free–and have all been made to drink into one Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 12:13
“Baptism is faith in action.” Watchman Nee.
“We may never be martyrs but we can die to self, to sin, to the world, to our plans and ambitions. That of the significance of baptism; we died with Christ and rose to new life.” Vance Havner
Water baptism doesn’t make you a Christian. And when Christian say they are baptising their newborn baby, it’s really just dedicating their child to Christ, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but you can’t mix the two up. Baptism is when a born again Christian knowingly wants to show the church that they have become or are a believer. It’s a statement, an important and sacred statement. But it doesn’t make you a Christian. Watchman Nee says it best, “Baptism is an outward expression of an inward faith.”