The Transforming Impact of BaptismNew Every Morning | January 4, 2023
Today’s Scripture: Matthew 3:13-17
When Jesus is baptized and comes out of the water, he doesn’t just come back into the air; he sees the Spirit of God descending on him and hears a voice from heaven. Jesus reminds us in this text that the transforming impact of baptism should start in us. Baptism is not simply a rite of passage or life insurance for salvation. Baptism should help us to see with new eyes and hear with new ears the working of the Spirit.
—F. Douglas Powe Jr., in The Upper Room Disciplines 2023: A Book of Daily Devotions (Upper Room Books, 2022)
What impact did your baptism (or confirmation, if you were baptized as a baby) have on you? Join the conversation.
[John the Baptizer] announced, “One stronger than I am is coming after me. I’m not even worthy to bend over and loosen the strap of his sandals. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
—Mark 1:7-8 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
All-seeing God, may our words and our actions help others to
see you. May we talk the talk and walk the walk as Christians.
Prayer by F. Douglas Powe Jr.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
This week’s New Every Morning reflections feature excerpts from the current readings in The Upper Room Disciplines 2023. Disciplines provides an opportunity to look more deeply at scripture by offering a week of devotions by a single author on a particular theme. Learn more at UpperRoomBooks.com/disciplines.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Baptism of the Lord
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.
I was baptized when I was in college. At the time, I thought I had made a meaningful commitment to Christ. It was over 10 years later that I came into relationship with Him and began seeking Him. When I attended SoulFeast – one evening we received a swath of cloth and were told to remember our baptism. This was quite meaningful to me and the cloth is draped around the lamp which I use to read during my morning time.
My time away was very relaxing and we were blessed with better than anticipated weather. The days were slow and easy, with no concern for time. I slept peacefully, with no middle of the night wakeups by kittens. They seemed to fare quite well with my student who stopped in to tend to them daily.
Our union team has given the 10 day strike notice and if an agreement cannot be reached, we will be striking at 12:01 AM Monday. We have teacher meetings tomorrow and then the students are to come Friday (some braintrust thought up that idea). We have parental support as the key point we are striking about concerns safety. Supposedly the parents are also going to “strike” – not having their students sign on for online learning. We will see what is said tomorrow at our staff meetings.
I had my MRI today and received my results – in mostly language I need a health professional to translate. Hoping to hear from either (both) my rheumatologist or my sports med doc tomorrow or Friday.
I was baptized in at church camp in June of 1976, right before I turned 13. It was not my idea. My mom told me it was time. The denomination she grew up in teaches that salvation and forgiveness of sin happens at the moment of baptism. She was scared o was already too far gone. Our pastor, who had wonderful rapport with awkward teens and tweens, baptized me. Somehow, even though it was not my idea to be baptized, my heart was opened to God. God’s love reached in and found me.
David was transported back to Georgia for rehab yesterday. He is on O2 and was wheezing. Nurse practitioner saw him this morning and added an inhaler to his treatment. It seemed to me his wheezing was better today. This is concerning due to his history of severe Covid. But nurse practitioner advised that it is probably from lying on his back after surgery and not using the breathing spiralizer. Please pray that as David increases activity, this will clear up.
Jill, many prayers for you and your fellow teachers, your students, and their parents. Praying strength for you all.