Scripture: Romans 6:1-11
Observation: Through baptism, we are dead to sin and alive in Christ Jesus. We become free from the power of sin. Just as death had no power over Jesus, it has no power over us when we trust fully in him and are baptized.
Application: Think of the thing that makes you most uncomfortable. And then imagine doing it in public for the world to see. For me, it’s swimming suits. Ugh. Right now I’m throwing up a double praise hands emoji because it’s the dead of winter and I don’t have to currently worry about them. But, wow, do they make me uncomfortable. Shopping for them is the worst, isn’t it, ladies? You have to find one that fits but isn’t too tight. You have to find one that isn’t too revealing but isn’t too baggy either. You have to find one that will hold up but doesn’t look cheap which ends up being a full-out struggle because if you’re anything like me, paying more than $25 for a single piece of material feels like highway robbery. And you typically have to do it all in the bright, fluorescent lighting of some small dressing room with a three-way mirror which really feels more like a funhouse mirror designed to make you hate yourself. Am I right or am I right?!
Once you get through the horror of buying a swimming suit, then you typically have to wear it. In public. And you just know that everyone is looking at you (read: judging you) and there is NO WAY to hide the fact that you in no way, shape, or form possess any semblance of a thigh gap. Please somebody get me a cover-up and a place to hide.
Ladies, ya feel me?
When I have to wear a swimming suit in public, I feel exposed, incomplete, self-conscious, and completely insecure. Maybe you do, too…Or maybe you don’t, in which case – teach me your ways! I know how to suck in my stomach for an obligatory beach pic, but I definitely don’t know how to suck in my thighs. I need some guidance, and since the Bible tells us there is wisdom in an abundance of counselors, I need y’all to counsel me. Help me figure out how to fool people into thinking I have thigh gap! I need your insight, internet friends! (For the record, I’m just kidding.) (#kindofnotreally)
I think for many of us, even when we’re fully clothed, we can walk around in public feeling exposed and incomplete and self-conscious and insecure, don’t we? We question ourselves, doubt ourselves, allow ourselves to be filled with fear and timidity. We get too tied up in our own sins and shortcomings.
But we don’t have to live that way. It’s what Paul tells us in today’s passage.
At The Journey, we use this term “going public” when we talk about baptism. Getting baptized is how we go public with our faith, telling the whole world that Jesus Christ is leader and Lord of our lives. We bury our own old lives, die to our old self, and put on the new nature of Christ Jesus, a nature that allows us to be set free. It’s a nature that overcomes ALL of our sins and shortcomings. It’s a nature that’s filled with grace and joy and peace. It’s a nature that gives us a confidence to walk humbly as a son or daughter of Christ Jesus.
When we go public with our faith through baptism, Paul tells us about how we’re transformed. Through baptism, we…
- Will live new lives (verse 4)
- Be raised to life like Christ Jesus (verse 5)
- Are no longer slaves to sin (verse 6)
- Set free from the power of sin (verse 7)
- Are dead to sin and alive in Christ (verse 11)
Now that definitely deserves a double praise hands emoji.
If you’ve been baptized, then remember and celebrate that day today. Praise Jesus for allowing you to leave behind your old life and fill you instead with his nature. Thank Jesus for setting you free. Remind yourself that everything you might struggle with today, this week, this month, this year isn’t too big for him to overcome because he lives in you.
And if you’ve never been baptized and you believe in Jesus, then find a way, my sweet friend. Claim that nature for yourself. Tell the world that your leader and Lord is the very one who defied death and overcame the grave. Because when you’re down in that water and come back up again, you won’t be worried about bathing suit straps or how your hair looks like a wet hot mess – the only thing you’ll be thinking is that King Jesus lives in you, loves you, and will always and be there to guide you.
Insert a thumbs up, dancing lady, praying hands, and TRIPLE praise hands emoji here.
P.S. Feel free to leave a comment below sharing your own baptism story OR how you fake people into thinking you have thigh gap and a flat stomach. Either one is equally welcomed.
Prayer: God, thank you for allowing us to be baptized into new life with your son, Christ Jesus. I praise you for him and his nature living inside of me and ask you to renew that nature in me today. Fill me with the power, confidence, and peace that accompanies being a daughter of the King. Amen.