Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I AM Baptized

At yesterday's Presbytery meeting, my friend David Huffman preached on Martin Luther's phrase, "I am baptized," and included in these words the gesture of everyone placing their hand upon their forehead and saying the words "I am baptized."

These words, and this affirmation comes from Martin Luther who wanted Christians to be sure that we did not only say "I was baptized on such-and-such a date," but that we live a life of baptism daily, living into the vows first uttered at our baptism as Christians.

There are days that I need to practice this simple gesture, just like Martin Luther did, remembering my baptism by simply placing my hand, open palm, upon my forehead and simply uttering the words, "I am baptized," remembering that I am God's and nothing can ever tear me out of or away from the Creator's love. Baptism is an act of God's doing, enacted by members of Christ's body as a sacramental ritual, as a living out of the Great Commission (Matt. 28). No matter what vicious and scurrilous things may be said about me for living honestly and openly as a man of God, who is a dad, and who happens to be created as someone whom the world calls "gay," I am part of God's good creation, for I am God's.

So when life gets a little heavy, a sadness and frustration sets in, I will say, as did my Christian forbear Martin Luther that "I am baptized" along with this explanation behind the power of such a gesture:

"Thus, we must regard Baptism and put it to use in such a way that we may say: 'But I am baptized! And if I have been baptized, I have the promise that I shall be saved and have eternal life, both in soul and body'. . . . No greater jewel, therefore, can adorn our body and soul than Baptism, for through it we become completely holy and blessed, which no other kind of life and work on earth can acquire." (LC IV:44,46, Kolb/Wengert, 462)

I, Brett, am a Christian. I am a dad. I am gay. I am baptized.



No comments: