This is not the first time I will have been baptized. I was baptized about 10 years ago but I feel like I didn’t know what it meant to be a Christian. I know now that God doesn’t protect you from bad things but instead puts you through them to strengthen your relationship with him.
I grew up in a Christian home and always went to Sunday school and didn’t think much about heaven or hell. I realize that we also live through a hell on this earth that is covered in sin.
When I was entering the sixth grade, I was at my weakest in my relationship with God, my parents split and new temptations had come to me. After that terrible year I didn’t think anything was gonna get better and I wasn’t looking towards God for the answer.
During my first year at the Junior High, kids started getting into new things like parties where they relied on drugs and alcohol. I avoided it because I was scared and I didn’t know what to do because I was alone.
Then something happened halfway through my 7th grade year, my cousin, Ike Sowers, invited me to youth group here at the church. I didn’t know what to think but I thought I would give it a try to get him off my back. I went and it was the first time I met Matt Strader who didn’t make a good first impression being a Michigan and Florida Gators fan. If you ask anyone at youth (especially Matt or Justin Palmer) they will tell you that I was a complete spaz in Junior High and even my freshman year, but when I reached my sophomore year after going on a few trips with the youth, I realized that I shouldn’t go to youth to hang out with friends, I should go to let my faith and my relationship with Christ grow.
These past couple years have made a huge impact on my life, especially now that I feel called to ministry After getting into the Word with youth group, church, guys I meet with, and just myself reading and learning, then praying and asking God for guidance and wisdom, I realize that it isn’t anything that I do that saves me. It is only because I believe that an all powerful, merciful God sent His only Son, born of a virgin to live the perfect life that I could not [live] and then sent Him to die and even die on the cross.
I know that I have a lot to learn and I want to learn everything I can about my Savior so that I can tell others that they don’t have to go through the suffering of hell and share with them that we can’t be perfect, but then again we don’t have to be because of Jesus. God has asked us to do one thing and that is to make disciples of all nations which will bring glory and honor to Him. I know that what I’m doing here today isn’t what is saving me but it is a way to show to all of you that I have trusted in Jesus Christ. As I continue to grow in Christ, I will need each of you, the children of God, to remind me to be humble and keep me accountable.
“So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of your who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male nor female, for you are all one in Jesus Christ. If you belong to Christ then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to promise.” – Galatians 3:26-29