The Faith of Our Youth

I am constantly amazed by the youth here at Hope. How they are so much better than I was at their age. Especially my own children. The way God has gifted them and captured their hearts is such a blessing and something I am incredibly thankful for.

I had the pleasure of meeting one such young man and getting to baptize him and his parents this past weekend. Since he lives in Minnesota with his birth mom during the school year, he is going to miss our annual Baptism Sunday in September, but really wanted to be baptized.

We sat down and talked through what that meant, he attended Pastor Ashley’s Starting Line class and was excited to proceed. During our conversation, I warned him that the adversary will most likely try to derail his baptism. That spiritual warfare and attacks are to be expected in the week leading up to the event.

Unfortunately, I was right. His birth mother does not know Jesus and was not in favor of him going through with this. She said it was dumb and that he was being brainwashed. It broke my heart to hear this, but his response was amazing. Even though someone this close to him counseled him not to get baptized, his response was, “of course I still want to go through with it.”

Wow. That is bold faith from an adult, but from a 10-year-old it is even more powerful. This is a kid that has his priorities in the right order and was such a clear example of those priorities being lived out. He truly taught me something through his actions and I am grateful for it.

Jesus gives us some thoughts on priorities in Matthew 10:34-39:  “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.  For I have come to turn “‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law — a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’  “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.  Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.”

Jesus desires to be first in our lives, which is something we’ll talk more about this coming Sunday. But first, an invitation: If you haven’t been baptized, I’d love to talk to you about it and I encourage you to prayerfully consider it. Our annual Baptism Sunday is September 8 at 10:00am. It’s such a beautiful day and a big family party. We have one service that day and then a big cook-out where all the food is provided. I hope you can join us for that special celebration.

Have a great week and keep your eyes fixed on Jesus.