Monday, April 11, 2016
My sacred story begins in Omak, WA, when at the age of a few weeks I was baptized by sprinkling.
Infant sprinkling in the Methodist church addresses forgiveness of original sin by God’s grace.
I grew up believing in God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. I believed I was saved by God’s Grace and that I was baptized.
For me, somewhere along the line I failed to understand that God loved all of his children and that he had the power to carry me through anything.
I could only understand the limited love other misguided people had shown me. When at 14 my family fell apart and my Grandmother passed I concluded that God did not love me.
So I lived my life as if it was all up to me.
In his book “ Love Wins” Rob Bell talks about his belief that there really is no hell. I tend to agree with him, I have lived in hell here on earth.
When I came to a point where I no longer had hope of any kind, and I did not believe I could turn to God, the grief was unbearable.
I turned to alcohol because it seemed to give some relief from the pain, but that soon turned on me.
I tried to change but nothing I did worked. And so I tried to find a way to end my life.
At the very worst moment in my life God spoke to me and told me I did not have to drink.
I did not at that moment believe anything I believe today about God’s love and power.
All I knew was God was my only hope and only through him would I have life.
Step 3 of every 12 step program reads:
Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand him.
As I took this step I was more then afraid that the result could be life as a missionary in Africa or some other result I really did not like the sound of.
Nothing could have been farther from the truth. Today I know where ever God takes me in his service, my life though challenging will be filled with Joy in the spirit.
As the years have gone on I have continued to seek conscious contact with God.
praying only for his will and the power to carry that out. I continue to struggle with turning every aspect of my life over to God, but when I am successful at trusting God I know peace.
And so I find myself on January 9, 2011 being baptized at the Richland Congregation of the Community of Christ. The membership requirements of our church do not accept sprinkling as an infant as baptism. I believed I had been baptized but loved the Community of Christ so was more than happy to comply.
I believe the Holy Spirit has been working in my life all of my life, but on that day I opened my heart and received the blessing of the Spirit.
This baptism was and is my personal expression of faith in Jesus Christ.
And so I took my first step into a life of discipleship
Like you when you were baptized I promised I would
Welcome the stranger into my life.
Feed the hungry, love my enemies, visit the sick and imprisoned.
God loves us, He gave His only Son that we might be saved.
To serve Him in this life until we join Him for eternity, is how I believe we show our Love of God