When I lived in the Milwaukee area, headline news on New Year’s Day announced the annual Polar Plunge. Every year people brave the frigid climate and 30-something degree Lake Michigan water to prove that they’re tougher than winter.
It can also prove resolve. “Now I know he’s committed if he’s doing this with me,” a young lady commented on a local news report about her fiancé who took the plunge with her. Taking a polar plunge makes a statement that you’re a person who is committed.
The Bible tells us about a similar plunge that did not take place in the frigid waters of Lake Michigan but the fertile waters of the Jordan River. Jesus’ baptism made a statement of commitment that changes your life.
The Son of God committed to a mission of humble obedience and mercy for sinners when he walked into the water.
God the Holy Spirit committed to tearing open heaven—at Jesus’ baptism and every baptism including yours—descending with heavenly gifts that equip the baptized for acts of faith and love.
God the Father committed to his Son and to every one of his children baptized in the name of the triune God: “I love you.” “With you I am well pleased” (Luke 3:22).
Take the Baptism plunge. Use your baptism to drown your shame, despair, and fear. Rise out of the water with Jesus, encouraged by the Father’s love and with the Spirit’s gifts.