(journal entry from March 3, 2016)
Yesterday was a beautiful day in the journey of my faith and personal walk with God. I took yet another step towards forgetting my past and becoming the new person God created me to be. I feel closer now to my calling and am anxious to see what the future holds. I made a public declaration of my salvation and recommitment to Christ. Yesterday, I died to my flesh so that I may live according to God’s will. I was baptized.
When I was about nine years old, my Paw Paw, who is now a well known and loved retired pastor, baptized me at our old church. It was a good day. I had told my parents that I wanted to live for Christ all the days of my life and I wanted everyone to know about it. Of course, they were thrilled. My Paw Paw wept as he baptized me because I was the first of his grandchildren to be baptized, and he’s a very emotional man. It was a day full of happiness and spiritual highs. But my nine year old self had no idea what would happen to me in the next ten years of my life. I didn’t realize that the memory of my baptism would quickly fade into the background of my mind as I began high school, fell in love, got my heart broken, and entered the thrillingly sinful world of college. The public declaration to live for Christ no matter the cost that I had made as a kid seemed rather insignificant once I reached almost adulthood and the freedoms that came along with it.
Thank goodness for God’s grace, mercy, love and conviction. Ever since I made the return home from college, He has been blessing me in mighty ways and opening the door for many opportunities. He has been doing a work in my heart and in my life, speaking to me about my destiny that He planned out for me before I was born. He has allowed me to have an amazing job at my church where I get to serve Him and be around people who lift me up. He has convicted me in the areas where I was wrong and showed me where I need to be heading. God has forgiven me of all of my sins and has proven that His hand has been on my life even when I ignored it. He has done that and so much more. I wanted to do something to show that I am ready to take my new relationship with the Lord to the next level. I wanted to show everyone the good things He has been doing in me and that I am turning over a new leaf in my walk with Christ. That this time, I won’t settle for sin, but only for what is best for me. So I called my Paw Paw and told him that I wanted him to baptize me again.
So yesterday, almost ten years later, I climbed into a baptismal with my Paw Paw again. It was our First Wednesday Service at church and a few people had been baptized before me. The whole afternoon my stomach was in knots. I was anxious and nervous but it was the exciting kind. The water was freezing and I stood there close to my Paw Paw as he told everyone how proud he was of me. We both teared up a little bit. After I came up from the water I heard everyone cheering for me and I felt this rush of energy and excitement. My Paw Paw and I embraced in a big hug and he told me he loved me and was proud of me. It was a very special moment I will never forget.
Now it is the next day, and even though it will not be easy, I am ready to truly live my life for God. Not some, not half way, but one hundred percent. Yes I am a human and yes I will mess up, but I serve a God who is bigger than my sin and has the power to redeem and restore. I thank Him for what He has done for me and will continue to do as I recommit my life to Him and try by absolute best to life according to His ways.
Yesterday I was washed by the water and today I am living free.