"Then he said to them all: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me." Luke 9:23
It just so happens that this coming Sunday, January 29th I am getting baptized! I am so excited! I know you are probably thinking to yourself, Andrea getting baptized now, hasn’t she already been? Yes, I was baptized at the age of 10, but at that time I had no idea what I was doing. My sister, Heather, and I both went forward together that Sunday, I think we both had no idea what we were doing and were just following the other. Talk about the blind leading the blind (no offense Heath!). I just thought it was the thing you eventually did after going to church for a while. I did not understand baptism followed your confession of faith in Jesus Christ. I really did not know what that meant. You see it wasn’t until I was 15 that I truly gave my life to Christ, confessing Him as Savior and Lord.
I remember a few years ago, maybe 4-5 years ago, Heather was baptized as a believer in Christ. I began to wrestle in my own spirit, wondering if this was something I also needed to do, but quickly decided it wasn’t. However, in January of 2011 the Lord impressed upon my heart a desire to be baptized. I remember becoming excited about it, but quickly I allowed my own fears of man and selfish pride to creep in and keep me from walking in obedience. I pushed aside the issue but about 4 months ago the Lord again put this desire on my heart, but this time it was much clearer. I knew He was calling me to the waters of baptism. The Lord and I have been on such a journey over this past year, I truly think He was preparing me in different ways to walk in greater obedience and this was one of the areas of obedience. I still wrestled with it, I tried to take control of it until I finally surrendered and He showed me what I needed to do. I needed to talk to the Diaconate board of the church Michael and I just began serving at. Talk about a humbling experience! Praise God for humbling experiences! Going into the meeting I have never felt such peace in my heart and I talked with them and they were overjoyed!
Of course, now I needed to tell the whole church of my decision and go forward after service on Sunday (talk about facing that fear of what others think!) I remember praying about it asking the Lord when He would have me go forward and I wasn’t sensing a clear call until the 2 weeks after I spoke with the Diaconate board. I was standing in the bathroom putting my mascara on when I heard deep in my heart, “It’s time.” I said to myself, what do You mean it’s time! “It’s time my child, it’s time.” I began to become nervous and I saw myself reverting back to my old fears. I prayed and I said okay Lord, it’s time.
I will never forget that Sunday. As I was standing in my pew singing the last song, I felt that call again. Of course, I was being stubborn, Lord forgive me, and was wrestling in my spirit, even though I knew it was the right thing to do. That old sinful nature is tough isn’t it! I remember looking up to the front and I kid you not, I saw Christ. He was standing there with a Shepherd staff in hand; arms open, and said to me, “Will you follow Me?” Wow, how could I ignore this call and I responded with tears in my eyes, “Yes Lord, I will follow You.”
So long story short, this Sunday I am getting baptized. Praise God! What an exciting day this is for me, it’s a day of obedience, a day to follow Jesus in my own personal walk with Him. God is so gracious and loving. I know there may be some out there who don’t understand why I am getting baptized when I have already been, but I am okay with that I know God is calling me to follow Him in a believers baptism and if I did not follow I would be walking in disobedience.
Jesus comes to all of us and He says, “Will you follow Me?”