Scripture Reading — Romans 8:14-17
“This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” — Matthew 3:17
Thomas Long tells the following story in a sermon:
“A well-known theologian once confessed that he was plagued for many nights by a terrible dream. He dreamt that he was traveling in a distant city and that he ran into someone with whom he had gone to high school. In the dream, the person would say, ‘Henri, Henri, I haven’t seen you in years. What have you done with your life?’ This question always felt like a judgment. Henri had done some good things in his life, but there had also been some troubles and struggles. And when the old schoolmate in the dream said, ‘What have you done with your life?’ Henri didn’t know what to say, how to account for his life.
“Then one night he had another dream. He dreamt that he died and went to heaven. He was waiting . . . to stand before almighty God, and he shivered with fear. He was convinced that God would be surrounded with fire and smoke and speak with a deep voice saying, ‘Henri, Henri, what have you done with your life?’ But when the door to God’s throne room opened, the room was filled with light. From the room he could hear God speaking to him in a gentle voice saying, ‘Henri, it’s good to see you. I hear you had a rough trip, but I’d love to see your slides.’”
Baptism reminds us that God saves. It’s not up to us. And what a comfort that is!
Father, whisper over us your baptism promise: “This is my child, in whom I am well pleased.” In Jesus, Amen.