As we celebrated baptism this past Sunday, and all that it means to us as individuals, as well as a body of believers here on this little patch of God’s creation, I thought a good bit about the legacy we are leaving for the next generation…some of whom stepped into those warm waters with some of the most awesome and awe-inspiring people I know.
If there is anything I could impart to my boys, it’s that they are loved by a great, big God, who is good and loving and who sees them as precious gifts. He sees them…and hears them…and knows them. He wants to commune with them. And I harkened back to several years ago when we participated in a family Bible study at SMC. The final night, parents presented their children with a scriptural blessing. When I watched my son go down into that water and come back up with the biggest smile on his face, I couldn’t help but think about those words I wrote to and prayed over him.
So I say to you, my son, let the Holy Spirit guide your life. Then you won’t give in to sin.
Sin will want you to do wrong, and that’s the opposite of what God wants and what I want for you.
Sin and the Holy Spirit are constantly fighting each other, within you (within us all) and outside of you.
Sometimes that will keep you from carrying out your good intentions.
Don’t give up. Ever.
Don’t get discouraged.
When you follow the desires of sin, the results are immorality, impurity, lust, idolatry, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissention, division, drunkenness, envy, and these things are not who you are.
They do not define you.
These things will keep you from God, and from joy and from peace.
The Holy Spirit, God’s Love, and God’s Grace, produce the kind of fruit in our lives that I wish for you each and every moment of every day: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
I see these things in you each day.
Hold onto them, and constantly seek them out.
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to His cross and crucified them there.
Each day presents a new opportunity to do so.
Since we are living by the Spirit (always remember your baptism in the lake), let us follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. It won’t always be easy, but it will be worth it.
Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.
Go forth in love, my son.
Know that you are loved beyond measure.
And willfully and willingly love others in that way also.
Make good choices and all else will fall into place, in His time and in His way. Amen.
(Galatians 5: 16-26)
…and Amen. He loves us (you and me and all those who will follow behind in our footsteps, generation after generation). When we openly declare our allegiance to God, we are furthering the cause of Christ and sending forth His message of unending, unstoppable love. There is nothing better I could ask for from my child that what I witnessed on Sunday by his own choosing. I am so thankful, and so grateful, and my heart is filled to the brim.
My prayer for you today, friend, is that you know you are blessed. You know you are chosen. You know you are loved.