That’s not a typo! It’s not my dyslexia kicking in. In marriage vows, we hear the expression “for better or worse.” For me, “worse before better” has a different meaning altogether. My favorite Christian book title is I Became a Christian and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt by Vince Antonucci. The title cracks me up every time I hear it. I learned the meaning of it after I was baptized in 2014.
When people get baptized, they often think life is about to change forever. It does. They are correct on that part. What I missed myself was the idea that the enemy is not happy when you give your life to God. It means he has lost another one, and he’s not pleased.
Even though I was baptized as a child in the Roman Catholic Church, doing it again was my conscious decision to recommit to God. It was a deeper commitment than I had been living previously. When I took the plunge on Feb 19th, 2014, I was surrounded by close friends and my pastor, Vince. I mistakenly thought life was going be more beautiful and easier instantly.
Though the moment was exciting, and the applause when I emerged from the water gave me a rush, the weeks that followed were not as I had envisioned. I remember calling Vince as I was driving through a parking lot and asking, “What’s the deal? Why is all this crap happening to me?” It felt like things were getting worse, not better. He calmly explained to me that it is actually quite normal to think and feel that way. The enemy is not happy and is going to make things quite challenging for awhile. He did.
No one had warned me. That’s the part they leave out, though I understand why. Look, I’m glad I did it, and I’d do it again. This is just a heads up. Often, after we dive in, it feels like any goal, challenge, or positive change we want to make is a test to see how serious we are. It seems to me that the enemy doesn’t care if we start new things because he can often easily convince us to quit.
Did that happen to you?
If you have not been baptized and are thinking about it, please talk to your Christian friends or a pastor in your Bible-based church. If you live in Las Vegas, come check out Verve Church. www.vivalaverve.org
About the book,
I Became a Christian and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt
Thank you, God, for Grace, Truth, Love, and Laughter,
(Reminder, this is just a journal of my mistakes, experiences, and thoughts along my journey to having a closer relationship with God. I do not claim to be an authority on the subject. If you want to know The Way, read The Bible. Find a Bible-based church, and get connected with other believers in your area.)
What church do I attend? Verve Church in Las Vegas
P.S. Thank you, especially, for grace.
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“the enemy doesn’t care if we start new things because he can often easily convince us to quit” – that’s a great insight. Thanks for being religion-forward!
Thanks for sharing your testimony, Darren. It’s like being baptized washes off the ‘camouflage’ that lets us blend in or hides us from the enemy and once that’s gone, we are very visible targets.