The Baptismal Covenant:
“With God’s help, we will so order our lives after the example of Christ, that this child, surrounded by steadfast love, may be established in the faith and confirmed and strengthened in the way that leads to life eternal.”
I recently went with our Boomers & Beyond group to the Dallas Arboretum. (If you’d like to know more about these trips, sign up for our email here.) On your trip, we had a docent, otherwise known as a guide. He seemed to be a wonderful man, very knowledgeable, kind, and patient with us as we asked questions. As a person who knows very little about horticulture, having a guide was the best way to fully experience the Arboretum.
I have also utilized guides at various museums, on trails, and on rafting trips. A good guide points out interesting things, offers insights, and ties history to current circumstances. In potentially dangerous scenarios, a good guide can even keep you safe! No doubt, then, guides fill a beneficial role. But what happens when your trip or tour is over? I always feel like I’ve lost a new friend, especially if the guide was particularly helpful.
Wouldn’t it be great if we had a guide with us every day? Someone who would point out interesting items, provide insights, help us navigate the path, answer our questions and keep us safe? Of course, a parent can serve as a guide in life, and many of us had great parents who did just that. But others of us had parents who struggled to guide their own lives, let alone help us in ours. Or maybe some of us simply didn’t have one or both parents. Hopefully, even if we had two great parents, we also have had mentors along the way who believed in us enough to serve as guides. I know I would not be who I am today, doing what I do today if it weren’t for many mentors along the way.
There are numerous examples of parental figures and mentors in the Bible. In fact, the parent/child relationship between God and Jesus, and the Holy Spirit as our guide are both primary in our understanding of what it means to be a Christian. For the next few weeks, we will look at the way mentors and parental figures shape our souls and guide us to be all God created us to be. We will explore stories from the Scriptures and from our lives with the hope to better understand how we all need to mentor and be mentored. We begin today by familiarizing ourselves with the Baptismal covenant, as utilized in the United Methodist Church. Read it over a few times. How are you “ordering your life” after the example of Christ that those around you might be strengthened in the way that leads to life eternal?
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for providing me with people who have loved me and shaped me along the way. Thank you for the Holy Spirit you have provided as my guide. I am grateful that I am not alone in this world. Please show me the ways I need to order my life so that I may be a blessing and a guide to others. Open my heart to the Spirit’s leading and give me courage to follow. Amen.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.