Mark 1:4-11 (click for full reading)
“I have baptized you with water; but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
Marked and Sealed
(click on the link above to listen to the podcast)
Oh man, I don’t even know where to start. Yesterday was powerful and meaningful and if you were with us, I hope you felt the Spirit moving as much and as strongly as I did. If you missed it, I hope you’ll listen to the podcast and join with us in celebrating your baptism.
We have heard the story of John the Baptizer baptizing Jesus in the river Jordan since we were kids. It’s a great story, complete with the wilderness crazy guy John, and the skies tearing open and hearing God’s voice of claiming upon Jesus.
But in case you had always thought this was just a story about Jesus, think again.
It is a story about US. When you were baptized, that same God spoke words of promise and claiming over YOU. God calls you “Beloved Child” and pours love down on you.
God speaks and things happen.
God speaks light and there’s light.
God speaks and creation happens.
God calls you beloved, and YOU ARE BELOVED.
Not for anything you have done or not done, but simply because God has spoken it.
You are God’s beloved child.
There is no promise more life-giving, more enduring, more powerful than this. Remember it today.
Questions to Ponder/Discuss
1. When someone asks you to tell them about yourself, what do you usually say?
2. What does it mean to you that you are a child of God?
3. We often try to find our identity in many things, our accomplishments, our jobs, what others say about us, etc. How does knowing your identity is Child of God, change the way you view these things?
Jesus’ baptism was the start of his ministry. Up until that point he hadn’t really done much more than grow up. But his baptism changed him. Being called beloved changed him, and he went out and healed and served and loved. Our baptism changed us too. We are different for being loved by God. So too do we go out and give and serve and love.
Find a way to live out your baptism this week. Show love to someone who you have shown hate. Show forgiveness to someone who needs it (and maybe hasn’t asked for it). Serve in a new way. Keep your eyes open for ways that God is calling you BELOVED.