From the Dean: January 12, 2018

Because of our celebration of Epiphany last Sunday, we missed hearing the story of Jesus’ baptism which is usually assigned to that day (Mark 4:1-11). That’s too bad, because the story of a 30 something year old who was wondering what he wanted to be when he grew up, who wanted his life to have meaning, and most of all wanted to know that his parents loved him is a story to which many of us can relate. Who doesn’t long for the words: “You are my beloved son (or daughter) in whom I am well pleased?” God is saying that to you today! Who doesn’t desire the sense of purpose found in the mission to make the world a better place? God is giving that to you as well. In his baptism, Jesus discovered who he was, whose he was, and what he was to do. In his baptism, Jesus received the power of the Holy Spirit to use those things to transform the world by telling other people that what was true for him was true for them as well. Notice that God loved Jesus, that God was proud of Jesus, pleased with Jesus, and believed in Jesus before Jesus did anything. It was with Jesus’ baptism that his ministry began. What is true for Jesus is true for you. You don’t have to do anything to earn God’s love. You already have it. God already loves you. God is already proud of you, is well pleased with you, and believes in you. More than that, God has given you the mission of sharing the Good News you received with others. You don’t have to be perfect. All you have to do is try, remembering that you are baptized and knowing that God already delights in you and will be with you, every step of the way.

Dean Shambaugh