Think of baptism as a kind of initiation. It's a starting place, an act that recognizes the new life that is coming to be.
It is a beginning, only a beginning, but it has its purpose.
Being baptized finds its purpose in what follows - a calling to God's way of doing things in a world that often resists, but is always changed by those who seek to walk God's path.next >
Here is my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.
He will not cry or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
a bruised reed he will not break,
and a dimly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.
He will not grow faint or be crushed
until he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands wait for his teaching.
Isaiah 42:1-4next >
God wants us to seek justice. The word justice appears over 200 times in the Old Testament alone. My favorite verse in the Bible is Micah 6:8, which puts it bluntly: "What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God?"
Many people do charity work and mission projects, especially during Christmas. We donate clothes, food, and toys, we build houses, and we serve in soup kitchens and shelters for people that are homeless. All of these things are important, needed, and good.
But justice is transforming the world so everyone gets a fair shot. It means becoming involved to change the processes that keep people trapped on the margins of society.
Doing justice seems overwhelming, and we never do it alone. But with God we can do things we could never even imagine doing on our own. We can change the world.
Jennifer Peterson Singhnext >
O Lord, may your justice roll down like waters upon this earth. Help me to be your instrument of love. Amen.next >
Every day brings something new.
And every day is a holy day
When you claim your baptism again.
May you be filled again with desire,
The desire to be filled by God and God alone,
Baptized to walk the disciple's road.
Jennifer Peterson Singh
Jennifer Peterson Singh graduated from Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond and was an associate pastor at churches in Virginia and North Carolina. She is now mom to her 4-year-old twins, Penelope and Micah.
Walz of the Spirit