Growing up in a small town in Southern New Jersey

Monday, September 14, 2009


I was 12 years old when I was baptized in the baptismal pool at Woodbury Baptist Church.  Our small church does not have its own facility for baptism, so our church, for as many years as I was at Mt. Calvary, borrowed the Woodbury church's facility.

I loved the drive out to the church, which was substantially larger than ours.  I know you want to know why.  The drive to that church took us past some beautiful, large, tudor-style homes, and I would gaze at those homes, with, I have to admit, covetousness in my heart.  I knew I'd never, ever see the inside of one of those homes, but I could dream, right? 

I recall that I and the others that were being baptized the day -- one of them my friend Kathy Kenders -- had to attend several classes on why our church baptized by "dunking" and did not baptize anyone who didn't know and understand that being baptized was telling the world (i.e., those in attendance and anyone who ever asked) that we were followers of Christ, that Jesus was our savior, having lived, died, and rose from the dead, to be taken up in the clouds to sit next to the father, and that he was the mediator between us and the Father.  Heavy words, and I could break down the larger words if you want, just ask me.

Anyway, as I was watching my grandson, Dan, being baptized yesterday (that's his picture), I recalled that day so many years ago, over 50 years ago, and I also remembered some things about all the baptisms I attended at Woodbury Baptist Church. 

First, I told my husband as Daniel was being pushed under the water, that it seemed to me that my father, who was performing the baptisms, held me under just a little longer than others, just to remind me to remember what I had done and why.  We always sang one of the verses from the hymn "Trust and Obey" as each person came up out of the water, and after all were baptized, we sang "Great is Thy Faithfulness." 

I have to say, I know the day on which I was baptized was a coolish spring day, and it was sunny because I recall the sunlight coming through those huge windows in that church on that afternoon as my father was giving a lesson on baptism to those guests in attendance, and once again to those of us who would be entering the water.

I am so thankful for my father.  He and my mom led me to Christ, raised me with the truth, and it is so ingrained in me that I guess I'm at an age that so many things I see outside my window remind me of God's faithfulness, His mercy, and His love. 

I wish I was the type of writer who could really say what is in my heart and mind about how much my Lord and Savior means to me.  Words just cannot express that.  I must close with these words:  Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  What a wonderful savior.


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