In my teens, I got bitten by a rather common bug that creates conflict between teenagers and their parents. In my case, it was with my mummy. I thought then that she worked too much and expected too much ‘unnecessary’ work from me and all I wanted to do was live life and enjoy it but she just wouldn’t let me. I know, I was in some ways, the typical teenager. Fast forward to the first day I stepped foot in the delivery room as a medical student in my clinical years. I was so shaken to my core at the sheer pain the women seemed to go through, just to bring their babies out of their wombs, that, when I got back to my room, I called my mummy and apologized to her. I apologized for all the stupid, hurtful and outright painful things I had put her through as an ‘adult’ child. I was appalled by all I had done to put her through pain after all the pain she had gone through already to bring me into the world. Mummy just laughed. I had only started then to realize that my birthday was a moment of me passively entering into a sphere I had no idea about and really no control of. My mum, however, had prayed for a baby, had carried a heavy protuding uterus for nine whole months, gone into a painful labour and proceeded to do the work of pushing me out. The one who deserved any celebration on this day, was her and not me. And going on from there I would call her every fourth of February, my birthday, and say ‘Thank You’ again. This time not only for what she went through in the maternity ward and before, but also for all the time afterwards that she had dealt with things she shouldn’t have had to.
Today is the fourth of February and for the second year in a row and for many more to come, I won’t be able to call mummy on a phone and tell her how grateful I am for her. My mummy’s gone to be with God. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t miss her. I know that I will see her again, in heaven, but I still miss her terribly. A few months before mummy died, I took a step that changed the way I personally viewed my birthday for ever. It was definitely still her day more than it was mine and I was going to celebrate her still but something changed.
Following a series of events that I still find very interesting, I got water- baptized. On my 32nd birthday, I took the plunge and had my life changed forever. You can read more about it here. Today, 2 years down the line, it is still one of the best decisions I have ever made and one whose impact I haven’t even began to fully realized yet. Of course, at the point, I had no idea it would be the last birthday I would be able to call my mummy and say thank you, and that she would be going home to be with God but I believe that God did and in His will gave me a whole new meaning for my day of birth. This was the real birth. The re- awakening of my long dead and deeply slumbering spirit. This was being born again and it happened, on no other day but the fourth of February.
As I step into my 34th year, my heart overflows with gratitude to God. I am grateful for His unchanging love, provision and grace. I am excited for the opportunity to walk in step with Him and to grow in relationship with Him. I am grateful that 2 years ago, He gave me the opportunity to die to my old self and to be raised again to life in Jesus Christ. I am grateful that like in Psalm 40, He has placed a new song in my mouth and that this song is really for His glory. That many will see this new and give ALL the glory to Him.
Water baptism, is one of the most powerful steps you will ever take in your Christian walk. It is a declaration and a pretty bold one at that (even if you don’t feel like it at the time you are doing it). It is a statement that you are ready. Ready to step into what you are uncertain about but what Jesus knows all to well. Ready to hand over control of your life to Jesus (don’t worry, He does it way better than you ever could). Ready to leave the past behind. And more than anything, READY TO LIVE. It is in taking this bold step that you are released into a fullness, power and strength like no other.
If there is one thing I can encourage you to do today, it will be to get water- baptized. A full immersion, watery grave, out and out water- baptism. Find a pond, fill a bathtub, get an inflatable swimming pool or go to the public pool. Then call your priest, church leader, whoever is further in their faith and understands what water baptism signifies and get water baptized! In going under the water, you willing choose to die to yourself and your will and in coming back up out of the water, you are RAISED to a NEW LIFE, leaving that old self there in that watery grave.
You can go forward to live, remembering that like Paul, it is no longer the old you who lives, but Christ who lives in you. How amazing is that!!!
Have you been water- baptized? If you haven’t, what is holding you back? I would love to hear all about it in the comments below.