I got baptized in September of 2019 because it was a way to take ownership of my faith and be obedient to what the Lord was calling me to do. I've grown up in the church and had already asked God into my heart, but last summer at camp, I rededicated my life to Jesus and made my faith a priority. For the first time in a long time, I felt the Lord's presence. I heard Him speak to me, which was so powerful, and through Him my life has changed. I've known for quite a while that I love Jesus, but last summer He revealed to me that love demands actions. I started listening to the Holy Spirit and making a conscious effort to live for God with my actions instead of just words and feelings. The process of strengthening my relationship with God has taken discipline, which I'm still working on, but the decision of obedience to get baptized was one of the best decisions of my life.
I was always nervous to get baptized and I'm not sure why. I knew it was what God wanted me to do, but I told myself I wasn't "ready." In reality, the more I put it off, the longer I could live for myself. At camp last summer, when God really took hold of my heart, He changed the way I saw my relationship with Him. For that point on, I wanted to act in a way that was pleasing to Him, so when God told me to get baptized, I knew it was time. And although my doubts, my hesitations, the part of me that still wanted complete control didn't just go away when I decided to follow Christ, the voices got quieter when I consciously chose to listen to God's voice instead.
There's nothing magical that happened because I was dunked under water in front of some people. What made it special was the decision it represented, to die to myself and live for God. The joy I felt making that decision and sharing it with my church family is beyond comparison with anything else. The happiness of anything I have done academically or athletically doesn't even come close to the joy of following Jesus. I can't really explain it other than it runs deeper than any human emotion, because it's not from this world.
If you even have the smallest feeling that you should follow Jesus and get baptized, don't hesitate. Chase that feeling because that's God speaking to you. He changed my life, and I know He'll change yours.
If you'd like to be baptized in our in-service baptism on February 9, sign-up HERE and plan to attend the baptism class on February 6 at 6:30 pm in Room 325.