My daughter, my sister.
This past week Molly began hounding Chris and I about being baptized. She's been asking for almost a year now and we've been talking with her about things. It's hard to to know if and when your child is ready to really make that step. I've met some children who are very ready at a young age, and others who aren't ready until they become adults. It doesn't mean that we are the experts by any means, but when you deal with a lot of families in ministry, you just sort of know. And, at the end of the day, it was a decision we made with our child.
Chris and I decided (and maybe we heard this from someone else?) that one of the best ways to know if a child/person was ready was if he or she couldn't talk us out of baptizing them. When Molly began asking questions a year ago, we didn't have a hard time finding questions she couldn't answer. But as the year progressed, and as we moved here, the answers became more and more evident that our child was seriously thinking eternally and not just in the moment.
This week her answers began to blow me away. There were things she said that made me wonder what old soul had crept into her body. When I saw some of her journal entries (yes, the girl is a writer--be still my soul) I knew this wasn't ordinary church-speak coming from her heart.
She was ready.
The details came together very quickly yesterday and we didn't have time to really prepare for a big glorious party. We invited our immediate family (grandparents and Chris and I's sisters), so please don't be offended if you feel like somehow we left you out. Molly made the phone calls. She wanted her family to see it and she wanted her daddy to baptize her.
And she didn't want to wait.
I also called my friend, Mark, late yesterday afternoon to see if he wouldn't mind running over to take some photos of the event. I knew I wanted to be "Proud Mama A" and be able to experience the event with two eyes (and not worrying about getting the right angle for the perfect shot). He took some beautiful photos and I can't wait to show them to you.
The event was simple, yet incredibly perfect.
A girl with her daddy in the river at sunset.
The symbolism in all of that is something that takes my breath away.
With her Daddy.
Plunged in the Waters.
Marking the end of one life.
I could hardly take it all in.
And as she rose from the water to the claps and cheers of her family (and the campers who happen to be here this week), the joy on her face was indescribable.
And when I asked her how she felt afterwards, she had only one word: