When I was about five or six years old, I prayed with my mom to accept Jesus as my Savior. Oh the sweet relief I felt to know that I would go to heaven when I died. My faith was simple and pure, and I am thankful that God heard my prayer. Yet I did precious little to grow my faith, praying now and then, reading a devotional here and there, and on rare occasions cracking open His Word. Far from being a devoted follower of Christ, I marched through the next couple decades, with eternal security in hand, living life my own way.
It wasn’t until I got married that I begin to realize how unanchored my life really was. My husband exceeded my wildest expectations in every way and I was crazy about him yet somehow marriage wasn’t easy. It may have seemed like a fairy-tale from the outside, but on the inside there was a palpable absence of pixie dust. He was human and flawed. And I was human and very flawed. Boy, could I tell you some stories!
But in retrospect our imperfections were a blessing. They made reality clear. My love for Will was imperfect, as was his love for me. Yet I had a longing, even a need for perfection. I desperately wanted someone who would never disappoint me, who would love me into being a better person, a forgiving person, and a more loving person. As I began to truly study the Bible for the very first time, I realized that I had been loved like this all along. Jesus had patiently and faithfully pursued me even when I accepted his saving grace and rejected his guiding hand.
I was baptized when I was eighteen years old. I confessed Jesus as my Savior to the world, but I’ve often considered over the past five or so years whether I should be re-baptized. Because as Romans 10:9 states: “That if you confess with your mouth that ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” I couldn’t say Jesus was my Lord in 1990, but by God’s grace, twenty years later, I can.
And that’s why on August 12, 2010 I was re-baptized at sunset in beautiful Lake Michigan. It was a wonderful celebration with many fellow believers standing on the sand, many of whom I am related to in one way or another. It was also incredibly meaningful because of who was standing next to me in the lake: my eight-year-old-son, Will. I am praying that his young baptism will mark his life in a profound way. I know he trusts Jesus as his Savior, and I believe he is serious about making Jesus Lord over all. Of course, the Christian life is a process and not just a one-time event.
There is so much I want to share about our time at Maranatha, but I thought it was appropriate to start with this. I do want the world to know that Jesus is not merely my Savior — He is my Lord. I hope and pray that YOU can say the same!