Love how Hailey is still sporting the Ute tattoo on her cheek? I do.
Tonight our ward did their Baptism Preview where all the kids eligible for baptism in the next year got to come and get introduced to what it means to be baptized into Christ's fold. I am not one to have a child be baptized simply because they are eight years old (which is the age when it's done in our church). I think a kid needs to be really ready and understand the covenant and commitment they are making. I love that our ward does this so kids can gather and learn all about it. Hailey turns eight in exactly one year and can be baptized after that. But I fully expect her to learn and develop a real testimony of HER OWN before she can be baptized. It needs to be HER decision and something that SHE is ready for.
Ethan was asked to give a talk and bear testimony of his own experience being baptized last year. A few days ago I sat down with him to transcribe his words onto the computer. I was blown away at what he had to say. Ethan really does have a love for Jesus Christ. It's nothing we have pushed on him or coerced him into feeling. Honestly. He has an old soul and we tease that when he was born, he was 70 years old. This is his talk- 90% his words and 100% his ideas. I only filled in the gaps to make it flow better. He's a great kid and an excellent big brother.
My name is Ethan and I want to tell you about baptism and what it was like when I was baptized.
First off, getting baptized is a blessing and a responsibility. It's a blessing because it's something the Lord has provided for us as a way to return to Heaven. It's a responsibility because Jesus taught us it's the only way to enter into the Kingdom of God.
When you're baptized, you take the name of Christ. Just like I bear my grandfather's names and treat them with respect and honor them, when I was baptized, I agreed to represent Jesus Christ and honor His name. I also committed to be a follower of Him.
When you're baptized, you feel clean inside your heart, mind, and body. It's like having a fresh start in life and getting a second chance. It's like coming down from a cloud of light, straight from Jesus Christ. You'll feel so happy and won't have any bad feelings inside your heart. It's like you have so much love for everyone, and you want them all to have the same wonderful feeling that comes with being baptized. You'll want to help everyone come to know Jesus Christ.
After you're baptized, you'll receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. When I was confirmed, I felt different inside. I felt so happy and kind and my mind was clear. Ever since then, I've had an easier time making choices. I have help from the spirit. Another great thing is that I have power over Satan. He can't control my feelings because I have a shield of light protecting my soul. I love the protection that the Holy Ghost gives to me.
I want to bear you my testimony about the truth of the gospel. I know this church is true. Baptism is important because it's a pathway back to our Heavenly parents. They love us so much and want us to return to them. I love my Savior. He's my big brother, which is great because I'm the oldest in my family and don't have an earthly big brother to look up to. But I look up to Christ because He's amazing. I want to be just like Him. And in His name, amen.