Hello, I am James
Sander-Cederlof. I live in
Why I chose to be baptized
feeling that still, inner voice calling me saying that I needed to be
faithful in this area of my life. I was already confident of my
salvation, but I kept reflecting back on how this was the next
step. I knew I needed to be baptized, but kept my inner struggle
to myself. This just kept eating away at me, and I could find no
rest from this inner voice. Every week, our pastor would remind
us of the importance of getting things straight with our Savior, yet I
was missing the mark for over a year. I could never recall being
baptized for any right reason, nor could the other people I talked to
about it. Finally after the year long struggle, trying to push it from
my mind, thinking I was in control of the situation, was when I broke.
was my big downfall. I thought myself above the situation and I
certainly didn't need to get this area straight with God. I kept
thinking during that year that perhaps I was baptized and I knew what I
was doing. As the year progressed, it became clearer to me as I
was spiraling out of control in certain areas that I was deceiving
myself, and I would need to put my pride aside and admit that I was not
in control, but rather I needed to hand control over to Jesus.
a dream I
had one night
that I was reflecting back on all my past sins, and how, and why, would
Jesus love and forgive me. The end of that dream was me, at the
foot of the cross, and Jesus hanging on the cross, being
crucified. In my dream, He looked at me and said, "You, my
son, are forgiven."
which happened before the year long struggle, did not even get me on
the final track, but it was assurance of my salvation to me, for I had
been questioning that in my mind. My life kept going out of
control, and I could not seem to stop it. My pride kept holding
Once I began
to listen to the still, inner voice that kept calling to me, Satan
would choose to rear his ugly head now and then and put my pride back
into it. I would do fine for a while. I then became
comfortable with my life and thought I was the one who was having the
strength through any struggle I encountered. That pride would
lead me to a downfall, where I would reach out for God once again and
use His strength. This peak and valley situation persisted for
many months as I was sorting out my decision and trying, wanting, to
get rid of my pride.
struggle was tearing me apart, but I was hiding my turmoil from
everyone: Family, friends, myself, and even trying to hide it from our
Savior. Eventually, I could not run from myself, nor God.
He overcame me and started showing me my errors. Here, He was
being faithful and just to me, yet I was not returning His love, which
He wanted. All He wanted from me at that time was the step of
faith into baptism. Knowing I needed to do this, I now just
needed the right time.
On April 10,
2005, our pastor announced there was going to be a baptism on the
following Sunday. I knew I had to make it to this baptism.
I knew this would finally give me peace. I signed up for the
baptism, and immediately Satan began his attack on me to thwart my
plans of being baptized. I realized this and asked for prayer and
support through the week. I survived the week and made it to the
baptism. I was willing to be obedient to our Lord and Savior,
Jesus Christ. This act of obedience will now open other doors
that I need to be obedient. This act of baptism was not the end
of the journey, but rather a beginning.
over this issue ended April 17, 2005, when I was baptized into our Lord
What I learned through a child
There are many things we teach children as we watch them grow up. We expect them to learn these things. But, if we pay attention, there are valuable lessons we can learn from them.
One day I learned that I was being a jerk. The incident is summarized here. Through that incident I have learned that my choices affect those around me. I may never meet that child again, but the brief encounter we shared has made a huge impact on me.
God decided to use someone, who would seem to have little signifigance, to change my life. I was able to listen and hear the voice from that small child. We do not get to pick and choose how God will communicate with us.
God cried out to me through that child. He probably tried other ways before this incident, but I was too stubborn to try to listen to Him. We need to learn to have patience, and we need to have the willingness to listen to God. It is for our benefit when He speaks to us.
This incident happened to me because I was too proud. I thought I was God. I thought I held all the power. I now realize I was foolish to try to be God. It took a child to show me the way God wanted me to behave.
I would like to thank that child for delivering this message from God.
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