Yesterday morning I posted about Jade’s Baptism. Then last night at youth group, Jade brought me a copy of an English paper she wrote and read out loud to over 200 of her fellow classmates…at her public high school. The assignment was to describe a moment that has changed you in some way. Below is her response.
As I was dunked under the freezing cold water, the last thing I thought about was breathing. I didn’t thrash, or try to find the surface; I just laid there depending on my friend to pull me up and out. I had never thought something like this could be so peaceful; not a sound or a sight. Not a worry or care. Peace. I was finally at peace.
Everyone says the initial change occurs when you accept Jesus into your heart, but I feel like the bigger change occurred in my when I was baptized. I accepted Christ into my heart a mere three years ago, and I have been growing in my faith and relationship with the Lord ever since. But when my youth leader dunked me under water, I feel like my entire mindset and perspective on the world changed. For those few seconds that I was under water, I was entirely at peace with myself and the world around me. I had completely forgotten about everything; I had not a worry or care. I was extremely nervous walking up on stage in front of hundreds or people. When I gave my testimony I was scared to death, but I had faith, and I was doing it to declare my love for the Lord. I went in thinking that I would try to look good and happy when I came up and out of the water; that I would smile and maybe tell a joke, but it all slipped my mind when I was underwater. I felt completely still, and I am convinced that God is and has always been with me. I realized that He’s always been there with me, from the time that I was little, and knew nothing of Him, to now when I was declaring my faith in front of hundreds. After I was baptized I believe my faith grew even stronger. I began to see his hand in all of creation. Now every time I look out the window or around a room I am astounded at all the glory in his work. Every time a Christian song comes on the radio I catch myself singing to it; I just want to belt it out! As much of a believer as I was before, I feel like I understand more now that I’m safe with God and that He has a plan for me. I still have stress, and worry, and all the daily challenges of life, but I think that I look at them differently now; not as something to break me, but something to build and strengthen me. I aspire to be not perfect, or even close for that matter, but to live my life to the fullest for and with Jesus Christ.
April 17, 2012
That last sentence really gets me. “I aspire to be not perfect, but to live my life to the fullest for and with Jesus Christ.”
Our mission at New Vintage is to “lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ” and in our youth ministry it is to “lead students into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.” This is an example of that happening at our church and in our youth ministry.
This is an example of when people give money to the church, it helps create environments like InsideOut where students can come and learn about Jesus, start a relationship with Him, and grow in that relationship.
This is an example of when our youth leaders volunteer their time and energy, they are building relationships with students and helping lead them in growing relationships with Jesus.
This is an example of why I get out of bed everyday, to see the life change that is happening in front of me, in my church, and in the lives of students that I love.
This is a win!