Danger! Baptismal Water!

I Am Baptizedby Demi Prentiss

On Sunday the preacher, referencing Luke’s story of the baptism of Jesus, reminded the congregation, “The baptized life is risky business.” She shared an excerpt from a poem by Richard Jespersen in the book I Am Baptized:


Baptismal water!

A relentless undertow of grace,

crosscurrents pulling us in over our heads

and out of our depth in Christ;

the drowning of the self-as-god

and the rising of the self-in-Christ.

God buries in a watery grave everything not of God

and raises to new life everything of God,

our watery Good Friday and Easter….

In water,

we see reflections of the world as it is.

In baptismal water, we see reflections of the world as it will be,

and we are changed.

To live the baptized life

is to follow

the way of the water and Word.

To live baptized is to walk wet.

The risk in walking wet is the risk of vulnerability. While fear holds us back and imprisons us, the courage to allow ourselves to be vulnerable sets us free, to live fully into the identity God dreams for us.

Walk wet. Walk with Jesus, who reminds us, even in the midst of the storm, “Courage! It’s me. Don’t be afraid.” (The Message, Mark 6:50)

With thanks to The Rev. Joy Daley, rector of the Episcopal Church of St. Thomas the Apostle, Dallas, TX

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