What is Baptism?
Baptism is the first ordinance we receive in the Gospel. It is the gate by which we enter in order to travel down the path to the kingdom of God. (see 2 Nephi 31:17-18) It is a necessary step to prepare ourselves to enter into the presence of God. (see John 3:5) "The Savior revealed the true method of baptism to the Prophet Joseph Smith, making clear that the ordinance must be performed by one having priesthood authority and that it must be done by immersion" (Baptism; See also D&C 20:72–74)
Within the last few days I have had the opportunity to have some amazing experiences with baptism. Saturday there was a 10 year-old girl that made the decision to follow her Savior's example and into into the covenant of baptism. It was a simple, but spiritual service. With much of her family there to support her in this great step she has made. The spirit was strong as her grandfather performed the baptism. It was great to see her joy as she went down into the water and rose again, with new life, ready to take on the world! That experience strengthened my testimony of baptism and the joy it brings into the lives who sincerely enter into it.
Last night I was also able to have another fantastic experience involving baptism. There is a family that we have been teaching for some time, and we were able to have a lesson with them last night in the home of some of their member friends. As we started with a song and a prayer, the spirit immediately came in and continued to flood the room through out the night. It was the best lesson I have ever had. We began to teach about faith, what it can do in our lives, and what it has done in our lives. Many heartfelt testimonies were shared, and the spirit was thick. There were many eyes that were filled with tears! We invited the wife to baptism, and she eventually told us that she was ready and felt the burning motions within her, and the deep desire to be baptized, but she wanted to make sure her husband was ready so that they could do it together as a family. The attention then turned to him, and we taught and more testimony was borne. We had told them that we wanted them to pick a date for their baptism, and then do all they could to prepare for it. We had suggest the 26 of March, as the date that we felt they would be ready by. As the lesson went on, the husband then turned to me ans asked, "What was that date Elder Dye?" I replied, "The 26th of March." He pulled out his phone to check his calendar and then began to enter in "baptismal date" on that day. There was much excitement and love in the room, as we together knelt down to pray. As the prayer was offered the spirit was string, and testified of what had just taken place, and that it was pleasing unto God. I know that family is ready and they will recieve great blessings as they are baptized.
These great spiritual and joyful experiences are reserved just for these two families, but they are for you as well. If you have not been baptized as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I challenge you to do so. Comment on my blog, friend me on Facebook, or chat with missionaries to make the necessary steps to prepare yourself for the joy and happiness that can and will come from following Jesus Christ and being baptized.