Monday, June 09, 2008


We've recently had a good deal of rain in this part of the state. One of the things that seminary drilled into me as a Lutheran is that when you see (or hear) water you think of baptism. So here I sit, drying out from the Noah like rains and bracing for the next round that should start up in a day or two, thinking about baptism and water.

The recent rains have brought flooding to Northern Iowa and parts of South East Minnesota that REALLY don't need flooding. Last August we had some pretty serious flooding around here as well. I imagine a number of folks still weren't fully dried out from last fall when new floods came. So, I know that when I hear about water I'm supposed to think about baptism, but with all of this flooding I can't help but think that this water stuff is dangerous. (Oh yeah, there was a story on the news this morning about a many who drowned when a sailboat out of Galveston, TX sunk on its way to Mexico. So, yeah, this water stuff is dangerous.)

The big, long prayer we pray whenever we have a baptism is called by many, "the flood prayer." I suppose that's appropriate, and not just because Noah is mentioned in the prayer. I think baptism is dangerous. Think about it. We confess to believe (as Lutherans) that in baptism we are drowned to our old sinful self and raised to new life in Christ as the Word of God is breathed into us. God grabs hold of our lives. We become one with Christ. Now, that's dangerous stuff.

YES, God has big plans for your life. YES, God wants to work good things through your life. Now, let me ask you, how many of those "good things" or "big plans" do you suppose line up with what YOU want or what the world is calling you to? Some might, but what do you think people thought of Noah as he built a giant ship in the middle of the desert? What do you suppose people thought when they discovered that Mary was pregnant and not yet married? (Let me tell you her life was absolutely in danger.) What do you suppose the reaction of Theressa's family was when she became a nun and followed her call to move to India? What do you think your boss might think if you asked for a week off to go and help clean up after the floods? Or a year to go help out following the earthquake in China?

This water stuff IS dangerous business.

No comments: