Yeah. I hadn’t posted for a bit, so I figured this one was worthy of some Latin so’s this here blog might look a bit more respectable. It probably didn’t work. Whatever.
But the quote is nonetheless appropriate. Yesterday I had the honor of speaking the Word that God both placed into my mouth and combined with water to extend the blessings of his reign to yet another soul. It couldn’t get any better. But in a coram hominibus way it did, and this due to the setting and circumstances. This baptism happened in jail, and this person had not, prior to incarceration, been a Christian.
The circumstances by which I got involved in this situation were odd. That is, one would have to absolutely discount the hand of God in them to see them as anything more than amazing — and I mean amazing — coincidence. My wife had made a spontaneous and otherwise inexplicable and uncharacteristic invitation to a group, and we met. A few weeks later this person was arrested and all the spouse had was a faint memory of “that one pastor guy.” It went from there.
Sometimes God works in obvious ways.
Jail restrictions make ministry interesting and necessarily creative. But it’s been frankly rewarding. To hear an inmate, who is potentially looking ahead at many years in a federal penitentiary, say of the experience that, “[Arrest and imprisonment] is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. If this hadn’t happened I wouldn’t have known about Jesus and what he’s done for me,” is frankly beautiful and unnerving at the same time. The decision theology that is evident among the chaplaincy in the facility has been a struggle for this inmate, but one for which the inmate has been armed with a Bible and a Small Catechism.
So if you would, please offer a prayer of thanks for this child of God who has been added to your family in baptism. Please pray for strength and peace for the family. And please pray that God would continue strengthen and preserve this new Christian in faith in Christ Jesus unto salvation.