Last Sunday, I went to a meeting about baptism. I figured I would get some good information, I could process it and make a decision - slipping easily into the event. During the meeting I was so convicted and so disturbed that I felt physically ill. The feeling was akin to the fear and depression that had been a part of my life for many many years. I withdrew from the meeting emotionally and fell deeper and deeper into that " old space". I couldn't talk to anyone or adequately explain what was happening. I just wanted to go home.
I didn't though. I stayed and tried to let some people inside my pain. That was so new for me, I was in a new place - I had to do a new thing. The people around me as of late have really been pulling for me. There is no agenda for thier love. They have true love of God and that is the source of thier love for me. They only want what God wants for me. That is so amazing and so scary . I know that I am coming at all of this from a damaged place. I have dwelled in a place where hurt people hurt each other for sport. A place where there is no trust, only fear and anxiety and hate and hurt. I know I dont want that anymore.
But I stuggle with accepting His love. The love of God through His son, Jesus Christ. I spent all day Monday in a fog. I went to bed early, exhausted by the strain of trying to stay upright when all I wanted to do was lay down and cry. I woke up on Tuesday, feeling better - a little less "pressed". I was even able to praise during the day and pray at night.
My pastorfriend (tm) gave me an assignment on Tuesday. To read the book of Ephesians straight through and then re-read it marking each time the phrase "in Him", "in Christ" or " in Jesus" appeared. This exercise was really really helpful. It showed me who I was in Christ and has given me a guidepost, a buoy in this stormy sea I am in right now. I have had many battles to fight internally. I know this one isnt over and it isnt the last one. The emeny has had a stronghold on me for a long long time.
I have always felt " called". That sense that there was always a loving hand reaching out to me. I wont bore you with the details of each encounter, but there have been many false starts on the broken road. I have often let the world or whatever step in between me and God.
On Saturday night, I will be taking a public leap of faith. I will set off on a new fork in the broken road. I will be rededicated to the Lord in a full immersion baptism. For anyone who knows me, the fact that I would 1. be so public and 2. go into water voluntarily is HUGE.
I dont feel quite worthy of this second chance. This opportunity. But... I've been given the invitation. I know this is the time and the place. I dont want to live with the regret of not taking chances anymore.
I'm petrified and blessed. I'm going to do it no matter what I feel. I am doing a new thing in my life.
Now, what does one wear to a full immersion baptism?
" ... we've been invited by the Son
we've been invited to come and
Believe the unbelieveable
Concieve the inconcievable
and see beyond our wildest imaginations...
Lord we come with great expectations..."
- Steven Curtis Chapman, Great Expectations