Today, in the Presence of God & friends, I was baptized.
This is the testimony that led me to the waters:
A year ago, my faith was lukewarm. I told God, "I'm knocking. If you are who you say you are, open the door." God wasn't intimidated by my request. In short order, God sent several strangers into my life.
The first found me in a crowded conference that September to tell me she felt compelled to pray for me. The second and third I met in a single November day. First, a woman named Priss took my hand in a coffee shop and declared the Holy Spirit was surrounding me. She prayed over me and anointed my head, and I felt a physical energy flowing from her hands into me. Later that day, a man pulled me out of line at Panera Bread, said he had a gift of prophecy, and declared God was working in my life.
In March, a fourth stranger found me (again, in Panera Bread) and asked me to lunch later that week--he felt drawn to talk to me. I knew this was another God-incidence, and so (with my husband's blessing) I had lunch with this 72-year-old man. I recounted how God had been drawing people, like him, into my life. When I described the second stranger I'd met, named Priss, this man's eyes grew wide--she was his ex-wife, and that week was the 20th anniversary of their divorce. God put me back in touch with this woman, Priss, who had anointed me months before (and, in that short time, had moved out of state) through this sweet man, her ex-husband. She's become a spiritual mentor and is dear to my heart.
My God has pursued me with a great love, and so today I declared to the world that I am His.
We gathered in small groups to share testimonies and pray.
My niece, Meaghan, shares her testimony.
Today I was surrounded by friends. Here are Nancy & Kylie Bergdall, and the Anderson family--Julie, Ben, Hannah, Abby, and Gavin.
Tifanie & Ashlyn
The Holts--Noah, Kyle, Kim, Jonah
My sweet husband.
Grammy & Bpop, with Meaghan
Our wonderful pastor, Dan Deeble, asks two questions:
1. Do you believe Jesus is God's Son, and that He died on the cross and rose again?
2. Do you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?
Mark prays a blessing after my baptism. It was everything I had hoped for, surrounded by my husband and kids, family and friends.
Kim, Tifanie, Julie, me, Brenda, Nancy
Over 100 people were baptized in these waters today, including a woman I shared a table with at Mothers Together last year, Heather, and two men from our small group, John and Rob. My friends Kyran, Megan, and Liz were also in the water. The day couldn't have been more beautiful, just like this sacred ceremony.
Tonight Lorelei's friend from 3 months old, Savannah Blake, invited her out for a Mommy/Daughter girls' night out with cupcakes. But when we arrived at the cupcake shop, they were all out! What's a girl to do? Plenty!
This was by the fountains Lorelei loves to splash in.
Here are the girls, dejected after the cupcake shop neglected to bake up a batch for their party (despite reservations--ugh)! They're peering longingly into the salon window next door...
But there's a turn-around coming--we decide that pedicures are even better than cupcakes! Mommy negotiates a bargain: $5 each, which equals 50 cents a toe!
Entering the salon. Lorelei loves pedis!
And lollipops to boot! Yum.
Savannah hops into L's chair--pedis are more fun in pairs!
Beautiful girls. They're so posh.
They both picked shades of purple.
Girls just wanna have fun, and we are!
Hannah, one of L's best friends too, is eagerly anticipating her pedi in pinkalicious pepto pink!
Ooh la-la! They even added gems and flowers!
Next, we trot past the fountains toward the gelateria.
Lorelei, Hannah, and Abby in feathers.
Lorelei gobbles black cherry and lavender swirl gelato.
Then it's off to the courtyard for tag games, gymnastics in the grass, and lounging in oversized Adirondacks.
Savvy and Lorelei, with Abby looking on from the yellow chair.
We spend the rest of the gorgeous evening outdoors, splashing for an hour in the fountains, pretending to be water spouts, and enjoying the company of posh princesses and Mommy's good friends, Brenda and Julie. The girls are soaked from feather to polished toe!