Every Sunday of worship is special. But, there are some Sundays when the Holy Spirit seems thick in the air. Today was one of those Sundays. For one thing, we baptized five people and welcomed them into the church. After the tragedy in Charleston happened, I wondered how, as a congregation in worship, we could address these murders while keeping with the celebration of baptism.
As it turns out, baptism was the hopeful response we could have. Baptism is a dip into the promises of God. For me, our baptisms almost felt like an act of defiance against a world that wanted us to lose hope this week. With each person immersed, our answer was, "No, we will not lose hope." With each proclamation that someone was being baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit, we found a deepened assurance of God's powerful presence. With each reminder that we are beloved children of God, we opened the doors of our hearts even wider to each other.
I was glad to be at church today. I was glad to have the great honor of baptizing new Christians. I am glad to have been immersed in God's love myself.
In response to Charleston, I am re-committing to my call as a Christian to actively seek ways to make this world a better, more loving place. I am starting now.