When I was a boy, somewhere in between 6 and 8 years old, I was baptized at the Methodist church that my family was attending. As is common in Methodist churches, our beloved pastor was being transferred to a different church and we were to receive a new pastoral appointment. My parents decided that since I had professed my faith as a Christian it would be a special moment for me to be baptized by our outgoing pastor.
I don’t have a hard opinion on how baptism should be done. I don’t think that the symbolic Methodist sprinkle of water is an inferior baptism. However, there is a drama in going completely underwater and emerging on the other side as a new creation, as a committed follower of Christ. I also don’t think that the age of the baptized is particularly significant. Children can definitely be baptized, because the act of child baptism is a covenant between the parents of the child and the church that they are a part of to do everything that they can to ensure the spiritual growth and progress of the child.
I find myself in a very common place for children that grew up in church. My baptism happened almost 20 years ago. Since then I have vehemently rejected Christ with my actions, struggled with my faith, sinned against my brothers and sisters, and come crawling back into the open arms of the Loving Father. My faith in Christ is now the thing with which I am defined.
I look back on the last 20 years and see someone who never really loved God, or other people, because he was blinded by sin and selfishness. My journey has brought me into a real relationship with God for the first time.
Baptism is the symbolic death, by drowning, of the flesh and eternal rebirth as a new creation. I feel like there are some areas of my life that need to drown. I feel like there are some areas of my life that need to come back to life.
This Sunday I will be baptized by immersion after our morning church service. I have had a longing in my heart to be re-baptized for a few years now. I am really excited to finally get to profess my faith publicly with my family from Aletheia Boston.