I believe that Jesus was prophesied to come, was born the way that God promised (of a virgin), lived a human life like mine but without sin, and performed miracles. When the time came, he sacrificed His life to save mine, and that of every person who had lived before Him or would live after Him, was buried, rose 3 days later, and after some time went to Heaven to be with His father, God. He is the only way that anyone can be saved, but as a show of our faith in Him and this truth, there are steps we should take.
My parents had me baptized when I was a week old. It’s what my family has always done, and I’m grateful to them for it. They wanted the best for me (they always have) and made the best decision they could for me. But what they did for me didn’t stop there. My parents were continuously faithful about raising us in the church. We attended Sunday School every Sunday, followed by church. They socialized with people we went to church with that had kids, and they sent us to a private Lutheran school associated with the church I grew up in.
When I was in 6th grade, Mom started taking me to confirmation class once a week, and in 7th grade I was confirmed. We each had to write a Statement of Faith. There was a special dinner for those to be confirmed, along with their families and some key church leaders, and at that dinner we each stood up and read our Statement of Faith. The following Sunday we stood up in front of the whole church and, as a group, proclaimed what we believed about Jesus in accordance with the Bible and what we had learned our whole lives.
I never strayed from that faith that my parents had instilled in me, never really questioned it. My parents (and the people at the church I grew up in) helped me to see the validity of the Bible to the extent that I never really worried about whether or not it was true. I had one or two moments (one when I was attending church on Wednesday nights with a friend, in addition to my regular Sunday service) when I felt a renewing of my faith, and rededicated my life to Jesus in front of friends and other church-goers. But I don’t know if I would say I had a specific moment when I accepted Jesus into my life, because since I was as young as I can remember, I’ve always tried to make room for him.
When I found out that I needed to become a member of HDC to continue volunteering, but to become a member I would have to be baptized again, I was disappointed. My understanding was that I would have to renounce my former baptism first, and that just wasn’t going to happen. That first baptism, prompted by my parents, is what started me on my faith journey, a journey that was nurtured and supported by those same parents. But once I realized that that wasn’t what was being asked of me- that I was being asked to reaffirm my faith in front of other believers, and to take a step of obedience to Jesus- I became more comfortable with the idea, to the point of excitement.
I am grateful for my first baptism, for my parents, for the churches I have attended as I’ve grown, and for the friends I’ve had in my life (whether family friends, or friends I chose) for all the help that they have given me in growing in my faith. I am also grateful to HDC for being a part of that growth, for the opportunity that I’ve been given to nurture that faith in other little ones, and for helping me to see that being re-baptized is the next step in my faith journey.