Matthew verse 11-12 “I baptize you with water for repentance, but one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
I have just returned from a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend where we were able to be part of our granddaughter’s baptism. What pure joy! There was great peace in knowing that Harper was given a place in the family of God through God’s grace and those three splashes of water. For a few moments all the troubles of the world disappeared. A new beginning for Harper and a reminder for each of us that our faith journey began in our baptismal water and returns there each and every day. Through my mind this day is a song from one of my favorite musicals, The Sound of Music, “Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start, when you read you begin with A, B, C when you sing…..” No one is better for helping us get back to basics than John the Baptist. He helps us to see the way of the coming Messiah and yet his words are difficult to hear today. We want the comfort, peace, hope and joy that Christmas brings, not the challenges that John presents today. John may well have been furious about the corruption of the people of God. John reminds us that peace, hope and joy come from returning to our baptisms and John holds out hope for God’s continuing work in the world. Baptism is a place of grace from which we live. God’s promise of love came through Jesus the Messiah. My hope for you is that the font becomes a place from which you go, a place that offers an alternative to living in and living from fear. A place where God’s grace sends you on your way rejoicing!
Gracious God, help me return to you this Advent season. Calm my mind and my heart to experience your peace. Like John, help me to understand what we celebrate this season. I pray for a time when the evil of the world is no more. In Jesus name, Amen.
Rev. Lauri Boysen
Ringsted & Armstrong