My mum works for a church in my hometown as the Director of Adult Ministries, and she wrote this lovely article for the local paper recently. I asked her if I could share it here because I found it to be such a beautiful piece. Enjoy!
A watermark is an image imprinted on important papers or photographs to prevent counterfeiting. You can see a watermark on your passport or on currency. The watermark indicates that these papers are authentic, and in a sense, verify who they belong to. The waters of baptism mark us as children of God. In believer’s baptism, they provide the opportunity for a follower of Jesus to publicly declare the authenticity of their faith. This is who I belong to. This is what I believe. I commit my life to walking with Jesus.
At Woodside, baptisms are a time of celebration as a church family. We listen, spellbound, to the faith stories. We are astounded by how God is working in the life of someone we sit with at church. God is real! We hold our breath with them as they are lowered into the water in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. We cheer as they come up grinning and crying and hugging their pastor. We celebrate how real life with Jesus brings transformation.
On just such a Sunday, as I left the sanctuary to find the girl who took the plunge, I saw a trail of wet footprints on the carpet of the church foyer. I wonder if there is a trail to follow from my baptism? Do I leave footprints of holy water wherever I go? Is the water of my baptism still dripping on the path of my day? The waters in which I die to myself? The living waters that raise me up, gasping and laughing and grasping at new life – soaked in the Spirit of Christ, washed in the cleansing flood of Jesus’ love. Can you see the direction of my footprints? Am I walking well, in step with the Spirit? Can those around me follow my trail back to the spring of living water? Does my trail take them on detours where they lose their way or lose interest in Jesus, or does it make them thirsty to find Him?
And then I noticed the trail of big splashes of water on the carpet. Messy, irregular, but clearly a trail to the baptistry. Early that morning we realized that no one had thought to fill the tank, and the tap would certainly not run fast enough to fill it in time. These splashes are a testimony to the Bucket Brigade of saints, who rolled up their sleeves and got their Sunday clothes wet, to carry bucket after bucket from the kitchen to the baptismal tank. So it is with the Body of Christ. God graciously uses each of us to prepare the tank, bucket by bucket, for a baptism. A bucketful may feel heavy and cumbersome, and once emptied into the tank, it looks woefully inadequate. But your bucket plus my bucket plus the bucket of the children’s pastor, and eventually the water rises ready to welcome a new member of the Family. We each do a bit, like a link in a chain, dragging our bucket as an act of faith, that God will take my small offering and do something wonderful. Water into wine perhaps? So we heard, in the life-giving stories, how a Bucket Brigade of saints had each poured a bucket of water into the lives of these who once were lost. And we choked back tears and applauded wildly as they rose from the living waters of baptism that morning.
Praise God that He has left his watermark on my life and yours! Welcome to the Family!
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Welcome! My name is Katiana and I am a development professional pursuing my dream to live out Isaiah 1:17 to the best of my abilities. I am passionate about teaching and working with vulnerable families and children to improve their lives sustainably.
This blog is composed of my personal opinions, which do not necessarily reflect the opinion or views of institutions or organizations that I may be or have been affiliated with.