We celebrate all kind of milestones in our children's lives. We have birthday parties and invite friends, we have end of school parties and graduations with family to witness, we have sporting events with guests, and the list goes on and on. We are people who like to celebrate!
Recently when Lydia was baptized, one of the parents of her friends who came said she was so glad that we'd asked them to celebrate with us. She expressed that often times we see our children take one of the biggest steps in their life and we forget to celebrate it properly. Brenda said to me, "we invite people to sporting events, talent shows, and birthday parties, why do we not think to invite people to baptisms?" She's right, baptism is BIG, we should celebrate with everyone!
Lydia asked to be baptized, first on Easter Sunday, but wanted to invite everyone she knew. When I explained that most people like to be in their home church for Easter service she had to rethink her date. She said, "baptism is an expression of my faith and I want everyone I know to see it!"
Lydia chose June 5th to be baptized and excitedly gave me a list of names for invitations.
She said, "it's one of the biggest days of my life, I want to share it with everyone I know!"
I invited everyone on the list and some of them went to great lengths to be here and it touched my heart to see how much these people love my daughter and love our family! We had friends that got up Sunday morning and drove 2-3 hours to be here and made it, on time, for the 9:30 service! We had friends who came in the night before, from Indiana, and spent the night in town so they could be here. She had friends from several other churches around town who came! The mom of two of her closest friends woke up early and snuck out of the house, leaving a sleeping toddler with dad, so she and her two daughters could be there! One of Lydia's other close friends had been at camp all week and her mom was looking forward to resting up after a long week, but they were there bright and early!
Those kinds of sacrafices and that amount of dedication is moving. It's not easy to do any of those things! The amount of planning and consideration, and altering of plans and days isn't lost on me. The coordination it takes to get kids ready, the dedication it takes to say you'll be there and show up, the covert operation that goes into sneaking away from a sleeping toddler when you'd rather have a day off, the time it takes to drive across state lines, giving up sleep when all you want to do is rest up, the sacrafice of missing your home church, and the dedication it takes to be willing to do those things are all testimonies of God's love here on earth.
The baptism itself will be an entirely separate blog because it was one of the most amazing blessings that I've been given and I'm still processing the emotions from that.
I've only got one child left to be baptized, but you can bet when he takes that step there will be a celebration! Next time any of our kid's friends make that commitment we will be there too! We may just be a face in the crowd but we will celebrate here on earth like the angels in heaven!