This past Sunday we had the honor of having our 3 youngest baptized. What a glorious and humbling day. These children have been in our home for 6 months and it still amazes me at what God has done! It was humbling to reflect how God chose to entrust us with these precious souls! US! Even though we have so many character flaws and struggle in many areas, He still chose to bless us with these children that needed a home, that needed a family…that needed HIM!
They have been so receptive of the Gospel, especially Cherish, who is like a little sponge begging for more. I have no doubt that her spiritual gift is discernment. She can see through situations and can connect the dots very quickly. When we are doing our reading in the Child’s Story of the Bible, it is so funny because she has her own little commentary when we read of disobedience, repentance and victory.
Cherish has been asking for months to be baptized. When God gives you eyes to see it’s really not a difficult thing to understand. We’ve spent 6 months teaching these children about God’s mercy to them. We have been teaching creation, the fall of man and the need of a Savior. They have learned the Ten Commandments, The Apostle’s Creed and the first 40+ questions in the Catechism (no we are not Catholic). So we felt that they had a good grasp of who God is, although that is a lifelong process which will never be accomplished until we cross on over and see Him face to face.
This is Hayden! This is a boy that adores Jeff, whom he now calls “Dad”. It’s pretty funny to watch him follow behind Jeff. He acts just like him, dresses like him…he even insist in pockets on his t-shirts like Dad. This boy likes to pray. We’ve had some pretty difficult situations happen since they have been here and he has witnessed Jeff go to prayer; he has watched Jeff pray over our van as he worked on it for 3 weeks along with many other specific needs. It dawned on me one day that God was using many of our ‘situations’ to teach this little boy about trust in God and about prayer. These are the most important lessons of life.
A few weeks ago we received some bad news about a Jeff’s dad, Jeff was upset and Hayden saw him tear up. It broke his heart to see his dad so upset. One of our girls saw him go out to our pavilion and pray. How beautiful to see this little boy run to Jesus with his requests.
About a month after Hayden arrived here I was out hanging clothes on the line; our line runs from up on our deck to our shed. I was hanging clothes and Hayden was riding his bike around the house, he came rolling pass me and all I could hear was him running down a list of things he was thanking God for, “Thank you, God, for Dad, Thank you God for …” it was the first fruits of our labor with these kids. It completely melted my heart as I started saying, “Thank you, God for these children and the work you have given us!”
And then there is Sweet Peach! This girl is so full of energy and almost always smiling. She walks around the house singing all the time, as does Hayden. To hear her sing, He’s Still Working on Me is a constant reminder to be patient, that a life of holiness is a process of sanctification. Peach is learning all about the circle of blessing as she blesses us each and every day. We can learn so much about our relationship with God from children.
And what a blessing to have a church family to share in our journey, because they are a key part of the journey. We are in this together, we are one Body, the Bride of Christ. We celebrated with a time of refreshments and fellowship after church!
And now about baptism. I do not want this post to be a debate over Infant Baptism vs Believer’s Baptism. Baptism is a symbol, it is not our salvation.
For our family we have chosen to treat our children as Believers. They are being raised in a Christian home, expected bear the responsibility of a Believer, so we want to give them the blessings of a Believer. Although these children were not born a Brodock, they are expected to act like a Brodock and they receive the blessings and privileges of a Brodock. They may choose to walk away from us one day, but while they are in this house they will be loved as a Brodock. They may choose to walk away from God one day, that is between them and God, until then we want them to experience all the duty, as well as the privileges, of being a Christian.
“Now when does Abraham receive the sign? Before he has faith? Or after he has faith? Before he realizes the content of the promises of the covenant, or after he actually realizes the content of the promises. Manifestly he receives the sign of the promise after he’s received the substance of the promise, after he’s believed, after he’s repented, right? Then he is given the sign of circumcision. But not only is this sign of circumcision which indicates all that’s contained in the promise of redemption is given to Abraham after he has faith and has been repentant and all the rest, and is regenerate and so on, God not only permits but explicitly commands the infant son of Abraham receive the sign of this same covenant. And not only is it commanded to Abraham and to Isaac and to Jacob, but when Moses delays it, God threatens to kill him for withholding the sign of the covenant from his infant son.
That’s very important because here in the Old Testament the sign of God’s covenant of redemption is not only permitted to be given to the children of believers, it is commanded of God so to be done. And if faith has the remotest portion of the content, of the promise of Abraham, and if it does not, then we would have to say that Abraham is justified by some other means, or some other instrument than faith which I don’t know any Baptists who would want to argue that. The point is, that if he has even the smallest portion of the content of the meaning of that sign of the Old Covenant, then we have to say that we have explicit biblical teaching that God Almighty, at least in one time in history, has explicitly commanded that a sign of faith be administered to a person who does not yet possess that which the sign signifies.
So the first point we have to see here that’s emphatically taught in the Old Testament is that the sign of redemption is commanded of God to be given to infants, not to all infants indiscriminately, but only to those who are in the covenant community, to the visible household of faith which I’m going to take the liberty to call the Old Testament church. “