Sunday, January 16, 2011

What's next?

Last week in church we were encouraged to “remember our baptism.” At my church, our pastor, Jack, stood by the baptismal font and spoke about the water, picking it up in cupped hands and letting it fall back into the font as he reminded us of all the ways God has delivered us through water. He encouraged us to step forward and touch the water, remembering our baptism.

We did as he asked, dipping our hands into the water, and then kneeling at the altar rail in prayer. I can remember my own baptism, but it wasn’t my baptism that came to mind last Sunday. I had returned to my seat and watched our older son, Grant, come forward, dip his hand into the water, and kneel at the altar rail. I remembered when he was baptized. He was almost a year old, crawling but not yet quite walking. We dressed him all in white, from his shoes, to tiny white slacks, to a double-vested sweater and brought him to church. Our family came and stood with us as God reached down, touched our son through the waters of baptism, and said, “He is mine; I claim this child.” The congregation promised to surround our son with love and forgiveness and to pray for him, so that he would become a disciple of Christ, and walk in the way that leads to life.

Now our son is 17 years old. He’s a senior in High School. He’s taking college entrance exams, apply to schools, and planning his future. On Sunday, as he touched the water, I remembered his baptism. The question on his mind, and on our minds as we help him, is “What’s next?”

It’s not just a question for a 17 year old, it’s a question for all of us. We are claimed by God; now what?

What's next?



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