I debated sharing this story online because it is so sacred to me. Before you read, please keep in mind that I am sharing my story based on my personal relationship with God, my faith journey, and my belief system. You are absolutely entitled to your own opinions and beliefs, but please understand that this is not an appropriate forum for theological debate. Thank you in advance.
Baptized as an infant
My story starts back when I was only five months old! I was born on December 9th, and on May 10th of the following year, I was baptized in the church I grew up in. My parents dressed me up in a little white christening gown and hosted our family and friends for brunch afterwords. I’m sure it was a lovely day, but I don’t remember a moment of it! Above is a photo of me and my parents on the day of my christening and below is a photo of the invitation my mom sent out! (The perks of being the eldest child…my baby book is completely filled out! Thanks mom!)
My faith growing up
Growing up, we attended church on Sunday mornings and said a short prayer before we ate dinner. I always knew that God was real, but I knew that He was real in the same way that I knew the planets were real or a faraway country was real–I’d been told about those things, but had never seen or encountered them for myself. (Not a strong analogy, but I hope it helps demonstrate my state of mind nonetheless.)
Then, when I went to camp the summer after 5th grade, I truly encountered the Lord for the first time. I experienced the close intimacy of the Holy Spirit and actually understood, for the first time, what it meant to accept Jesus into my heart. This was the summer I “got saved,” which is what Christians often call the moment they become a Jesus follower. Returning home from camp, I was never the same.
My faith was a winding path through middle school and into high school, but I never walked away from it. I found comfort, peace, meaning, and joy in the Lord that the world could not compete with. Late high school were years of deep trial for me. My faith was truly tested for the first time as a series of horrible events, one after the other, sent me into an incredibly dark and depressed state. (As I write this, I realize I’ve never shared my full testimony on my blog. This is a little taste of it!)
God was faithful to me through those hard months in a way that made me trust Him deeply and fully. I wish we could sit down over a cup of coffee (or tea!) so I could tell you how He redeemed that dark season and turned it into something beautiful. I could cry now thinking about it, and it was over a decade ago! Fast-forward to college, when, for the first time ever, I had a Christian community through InterVarsity (an organization for believers on college campuses). My college years were mostly sweet, with a handful of spiritually-challenging parts that God led me through.
By the time I graduated from college, I had learned through experience that I could trust God’s plan for my life completely. Because of this, I applied to jobs all over the US, from North Carolina to Virginia to Minnesota to Maryland to Colorado to Texas. I was convinced that God would put me exactly where He wanted me, and He did! As you know, I ended up in Austin, Texas, where about 700 awesome things happened over the two years I lived there, many of which I’ve written about here before.
Considering baptism as an adult
During my time in Austin, one of my mentors asked me if I was baptized. I told her I’d been baptized as an infant, but had been thinking about adult baptism too. I told her that as I had grown in my faith and read scripture, I felt the desire to choose baptism for myself as an outward display of an inner decision since I clearly hadn’t chosen to be baptized at five months old. She encouraged me to pray about it!
About a year and a half later, I was engaged to Riley, and my church was planning for baptisms. I knew I was ready to take this step and get baptized as an adult! Riley and I were living four hours apart at the time, so I called him to see if he was available to be in Austin on the Sunday when baptisms were planned. He wasn’t, but I decided to go ahead with it and told my friends in Austin my plans. We were all so excited!
Then, when the day of my baptism arrived, one of my best friends and co-workers, Chris (who ended up officiating our wedding!) pulled me aside. He asked if Riley was coming to my baptism, and I told him that he wasn’t because he couldn’t make it to Austin for the weekend. Gently, Chris said, “Blair, Riley is about to be your husband. I really think he should be here for this. I think you’ll regret his absence in the long-run. Why don’t you wait until he’s available?” To be honest, I was slightly annoyed! But Chris was like a brother to me, and I respected his opinion. I thought about it and decided he was right–I really did want Riley to be a part of such a special moment in my faith journey.
Nearly 15 years after becoming a Christian, I finally got baptized on Sunday! I had intended on getting baptized shortly after getting married, but finding a church community was much more challenging than I anticipated, as many of you know. After finding our current church, I told our pastor and his wife that I wanted to get baptized and was more than ready! They were supportive and excited and set a date–this past Sunday, August 13th.
Between the time when we decided on the date and the actual date, another woman and her son encountered Jesus for the first time at our church and began their own faith journeys. The three of us got baptized together on Sunday.
This experience was holy and sacred. Having walked with Jesus for so many years, it was powerful and emotional to share a brief testimony of my faith with our church before Riley baptized me. I could’ve spoken for hours of God’s goodness, faithfulness, steadfast nature, patience, and love. His fingerprints are all over my life! It was a joy to share just a few ways I’ve seen Him work in my life and to share how He has redeemed and restored me throughout the past decade and a half. After sharing a glimpse into my story, Riley baptized me.
My sister-in-law took a short 15 second video, and I’ve watched it a hundred times since Sunday. The joy of having a God-loving husband is unspeakable and easily my greatest answered prayer. To have had him baptize me was symbolic and significant in more ways than one. Thinking back on this memory is so precious to me!
That’s my baptism story. I hope you enjoyed it!
// If you care to share, I’d love to hear your baptism story!
Thank you for reading! You can find me online on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube. If you’d like to be alerted whenever I publish a new post, you can follow me on Bloglovin’ or subscribe via email. Take a look at my Etsy shop where I sell tees, totes, sweatshirts, and pillow covers! Are you a blogger too? Check out my Blogger Mentorship Program.