So, I’ll ask you – What’s your first thought when you wake up in the morning? When that alarm goes off, are you thinking about violence – “I hate that thing, I want to throw it against the wall” or are you thinking despair/helplessness – “Oh, I can’t do this anymore”? The speaker suggested that we write down three thoughts/truths that we could train ourselves to say to get each day started in the right frame of mind.
The presenter was a Mormon, as much of the Franklin/Covey company was back then – and still might be today. Early on, we’d gone around the room and identified ourselves and what we do. She didn’t seem to like the fact that I was a Lutheran pastor, and she seemed to stifle any spiritual/Christian-type talk.
So I know she didn’t like my volunteering to share my three first thoughts for each day. But she called on me. Here they were (and still are):
1)I am a baptized child of God.
2)I am husband to my dear wife Heidi (this was before kids; I added the fact that I’m a father when they came along).
3)I am an undershepherd to the Good Shepherd, blessed to be a pastor of precious souls.
I still remember these every morning. The pastor one is #4, after the kids. It can even drop to #5 for the day if I know I’m going fishing that day. But #1 still is “I am a baptized child of God.” That’s true for you too, and the rush of comfort and strength that knowledge/fact provides is not to be missed. Every time you and I remember this, every time we see a baptismal font, every time we witness a baptism, or when we simply remember the fact of our own baptism – it’s like punching in your password/pin number and gaining access to the riches of God’s forgiveness. It’s ours, for sure, for free.
“We were therefore buried with him by this baptism into his death, so that just as he was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too would also walk in a new life.” (Romans 6:4 EHV)
You are a child of God! By way of your Baptism, it’s a fact and not a feeling subject to the ups and downs of your day. Facts of the truth of God’s Word always supersede whatever feelings we may have at the moment, whatever circumstances we may be enduring at present.
Someone, or Satan, may hassle us with, “Who do you think you are?” or try to scare us, “God won’t accept you. You’re not good enough.” Or we may just not feel saved. Erase those doubts and calm those fears by remembering, “Wait! I’m still in God’s family. At my baptism, God made me his own child.”
Do this with your first thought of the day. Think of this fact throughout the day. Remember this precious truth as you slip into sleep at night. “I am a baptized child of God!”
Pastor Stephen Luchterhand