the story room

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Ten years ago today...

Today is the ten-year anniversary of my baptism.

I remember standing before my congregation trembling, publicly confessing my faith. I remember the nervousness causing my knees to shake and the excitement causing my heart to pound. I remember the warm water, and how I was plunged underneath (buried with Christ, the pastor said) . . . and I remember my first breath when I rose again (and raised to walk a new life). I remember the handshakes and embraces I received from members of the congregation. It was the first church I had ever been a part of, and had only been there for two months. But as they embraced me or took my hand, I heard over and over, "Welcome to the family."

I was eleven years old. At the time I wasn't aware of all the joy, depth, and mystery that would be mine in Christ, but I was very conscious of the fact that, in this act of baptism, I was acknowledging God's hand on me and His work in my life. I knew that I was called to respond by following Him with everything I had. I knew that God had been working in me and that my life was not my own, but His.

Something changed that day.

I can look back now and see that God had been working in me way before that day -- even before I was born. And I know that my baptism was not about a decision I made as much as it was an expression of God's grace toward me. But on that brisk October morning, I very clearly understood that I died in that water, and that I rose with Christ living in me.

For a decade now, I've been living in this pattern of dying and rising: dying to myself and the sin that I still wrestle with, and rising with this Christ-life that is mysteriously mine. It's been a decade of struggle, to be sure, but it has also been a beautiful decade marked by Life. I've screwed up a lot, but I can look back and see that even so, He's been good to me. And I'm united with Christ. Somehow, I've participated in His death and will also be united with Him in His resurrection.

The mystery of the union of the Triune God and an eleven-year-old girl (now a twenty-one-year-old young woman) still leaves me in awe.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Er...you should write a book about your life. I think it would be a best seller. If not you would have at leat one buyer...me!!! :D

It is really cool to look back in the past and see how God has been molding you and shaping you into the child that bears the image of Jesus Christ who is our Brother and Co-Heir to His heavenly kingdom.

I can see how God has molded you over these past four years here at Trinity Christian College. You are a beautiful woman of God (who is 21 years young ;P) who will do amazing things for His glorious kingdom here on earth as it is in heaven.

Four years of transformation here and four years of transformation yet to come at Calvin.

Love You Always and Truly,
Paulie

19 October, 2005 16:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW...October baptisms rock!!!!

:D :P
Paulie

19 October, 2005 16:06  
Anonymous Paulie said...

Yo...check out my new xanga site... :D.

26 October, 2005 19:08  
Anonymous paulie said...

Yo...I just wanted to say that in the four years of being your friend I am very proud of you. You have grown so much in reasoning...academics...and faith. I thank God for you and pray for the best for you.

09 November, 2005 13:42  
Blogger Erin said...

Thanks, Paulie. I thank God for you and pray the best for you, too. You're a good friend.

10 November, 2005 10:14  

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