"Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them ..." Matthew 28:19
In these next few readings we're going to look at how God connects with us through baptism and the Lord's Supper.
Baptism has to do with belonging, being part of the covenant family of God. If we are going to be part of God's family, we are called to be baptized. Water "marks" those who are part of God's covenant circle.
But being part of the family of God through baptism is not a magical ritual. It's not about the power of some "special" water sprinkled on us. If that were the case, ministers should be wandering the streets of every city sprinkling or pouring water on everyone, claiming them for God and making them "family." God's family would quickly grow to include everyone.
Why do we not do that? Because baptism isn't some mysterious water rite. Baptism is a sign given by the God who wants to connect with people, who tells us by this sign that he wants to "cleanse us" in Jesus. Baptism is a mark that we've been drawn into God's covenant circle. By baptism, God tells us it's not first about us; it's about God with us. Through baptism God is saying and showing that he wants us as family.
Baptism, then, is about God-connection and church-connection. Sunday is just a few days away. Baptized or not, where do you stand with God's family?
Lord, at times we can reduce our faith to some religious rituals or practices. Thank you that you have called us to belong to you and your people. Help me to live by that. Amen.
See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!