Monday, January 12, 2015

Fresh Start - New Beginnings

The first Sunday after Epiphany is a day to remember Jesus' Baptism by John the Baptist - and to remember our own baptism.  For my reflection today I will share bits of the service at our church, and my "reflections" on baptism.

We begin every Sunday morning service with a litany, calling us into worship:


Listen!  God is about to do a new thing;
God is already at work here in this place.
Listen! God is showing us a new way;
God has shown us the Way
through Christ our Lord.
Let us remember our own baptism
as we rejoice in the light!

When I arrived at Church this morning, I spoke to my Pastor and another member about Baptism.  I told him I was actually baptized twice; once as a pre-teen/teenager and again as an adult.  I did not feel my first baptism "took" and wanted to be baptized - again!

I had reached my adult-hood and felt convicted to be re-baptized!  I just didn't feel that I had really known what I was doing at that younger age.

Well, my Pastor and the other member both assured me "it took"; that first baptism was real and I really didn't have to do it again...

But I felt I needed to - so I did!

When we are immersed into the waters of baptism, it represents Jesus' burial;  we are leaving our sins and our transgressions beneath that water...

and, even though I was only a pre-teen or teen for my first baptism, there was a call - a pull - for me to "go forward" and accept Jesus as my personal Savior, and be baptised.  (Perhaps it was a "real" pull; perhaps it was peer pressure!)

When we are raised out of the waters of baptism, it represents Jesus' rising from the grave, in all his glory and wonder!

My sins and transgressions are left behind; buried with Jesus - and a new me was raised out of the waters of baptism.

So, when we hear that call - that pull - He will be waiting for us to come to Him, with open arms!  And, once we are raised from the waters of baptism...

we will be made new!

Spirit Song
(words and music by John Wimber)

O let the Son of God enfold you
with His Spirit and His Love.
Let Him fill your heart
and satisfy your soul.
O let Him have the things that hold you,
and His Spirit like a dove
will descend upon your life
and make you whole.

O Come and sing this song with gladness
as your hearts are filled with joy.
Lift your hands in sweet surrender
to His name.
O give Him all your tears and sadness,
give Him all your years of pain,
and you'll enter into life
in Jesus' name.


Jesus, O Jesus, 
come and fill your lambs.
Jesus, O Jesus,
come and fill your lambs.

One of my favorite hymns in our "Chalice Hymnal" - and the line in the second verse that always gets me: "...give Him all your tears and sadness, give Him all your years of pain...

and you'll enter into life in Jesus' name.

Nothing more needs to be said...

except - 

"Thank you, Jesus!  Amen!"

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