Drowned in Love

I mentioned that sometimes I write poetry when I process things.  Another thing I do is imagine myself coming face to face with Jesus in a situation and ask Him to reveal to me what he would say.  Although these are usually metaphors, they help me to understand different parts of the Bible or my life-- and most recently have allowed me to further explore the symbolism behind baptism...  Here is a excerpt from my journal:

I glance at the water cautiously.  It is unlike any pool I have ever seen before.  It is churned and muddy, and I have no idea what is awaiting me beyond the shore.  You stand, waist deep in the waves, holding out a hand.  I wonder if this is how Peter felt as he stepped out of that boat.

"Do not go in," a voice scolds from within.  I hesitate at the edge.  Seeing my inner struggle, you encourage me, "That is your old master.  You don't have to listen anymore.  You are no longer obligated to him."

I frown, confused.  I have been following this voice for so long that just it's tone makes me believe I must obey.  If not now, I know I will give in eventually and do as he suggests.

"You are with me now.  I love you and I bought your freedom," you explain, gesturing me forward.

I step in.  The water is already up to my ankles.  It is cold.

"What will happen?" I ask, still uncertain.

"You will die," you answer.

I falter, not expecting this answer.  You smile.  "The part of you that I created will live on, but the broken-ness inside of you will die.  The person who is bent on doing the things that hurt you or others will be gone.  You will be given a chance to start over, and this time with me by your side."

Now I walk towards you.  This is what I need, I know.

"Will it hurt?" I ask.

"The part of you that must die will tell you it does, but after you will see that you were okay the whole time.  You will be much better off.  You will understand freedom.

I stand across from you now, facing you in the water.  "Okay, I am ready."  You smile, and I realize you have been counting down the days from the dawn of creation until this moment.  You reach out and take me in your arms like a child.  Then, you push me under the water.

Immediately, I begin to panic.  What if I'm not ready?  What if this was a mistake?  What have I done?  I am choking.  I can't breathe.  I inhale a gulp of water and begin to gag, kicking hard.  With a rush of panic, I realize I am dying.

I try to fight you.  "You're drowning me!" I scream in my head.  How could you do this to me?  You, who said that you loved me.  You, who promised life.

Suddenly, something inside of me changes.  It is as though my very nature shifts.  The fear is gone.  I am breathing.  I am still under water, but I am no longer dying.  In fact, I distinctly feel more alive than I had ever been before.

You pull me from the water and before I can say anything, you are hugging me.  "You are free!" you exclaim.  I grin in return.  The doubt and worry that once dimmed your face to me is gone and now I can see how beautiful you are.

"Will she come back?" I ask, thrilled to have shed the old me.

"No," you answer.  "You must believe that she cannot harm you now, or you will still be a slave to the idea of her."

I nod.  "Where is she?"

"Gone.  And you do not have to worry about becoming her again.  You are victorious now.  You will mess up, but you will not be her."  You smile and I now you are seeing me for who I am, without the part of me that was broken and sinful.  "Welcome to life."

"What shall we say, then?  Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?  By no means!  We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?  We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just like Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life." -Romans 6:1-4


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