From Your Pastor's Heart September 26,2022
One of the most exciting aspects of my role as pastor is the joy of leading someone to accept Jesus into their heart as Savior. I had the privilege of doing that very thing this past Sunday, as Alex Conner came forward at the close of the service. We will be scheduling his baptism soon, when it best suits the family. Yet, we rejoice now for his decision to trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and to affirm his commitment with baptism.
A baptismal service is the perfect time to talk to young children about their own faith commitment. It always raises questions in the minds of those young people who are present to witness this significant event. In my first pastorate, we had a service where three children were baptized on the same Sunday. One of my members shared with me that, on the way home that day, her niece and nephew, who were in attendance, told her: “Aunt Virginia, I don’t think our mom is going to let us come to your church anymore.” She didn’t know if there was a problem, but was going to wait to talk to the parents about it. Then, the little girl asked: “Does the preacher try to drowned all the kids that come to your church?”
I can honestly say that, after 42 years of serving as a pastor, I have never lost a single person in the baptistry. Over the years, the baptismal candidates have included people of all ages. Some have even been much bigger and taller than me. We have had a few times where the water was a bit chilly. Yet, thankfully, I have always been able to complete the process without incident.
We understand that baptism is a symbolic act to demonstrate outwardly what we have experienced inwardly. In baptism, we paint a living picture of our death to self, being buried with Christ, and rising again to walk with Him. It is the believer’s opportunity to bear witness to the world that they have given their heart and life to Christ. Please join with me in praying for Alex’s new life with Christ and for his upcoming baptism!
Serving in love, Bro. Jim