Proud Papa

10 08 2009

Last night, I had the privilege of baptizing my oldest child. To answer the $64,000 question, no, I did not cry. I thought about it, but my left brain took over, analyzed the situation, and deduced that no benefit to anyone would come of it. Incidentally, I also processed in that moment that the idea of a $64,000 question is a little bit dated. Sure, it was probably huge in the 50’s, but 64,000 dollars these days wouldn’t pay for Wink Martindale’s veneers. (Yes, I know, it was Hal March and not Wink; but no one knows who Hal March is and I can’t be bothered with anachronisms in the middle of this baptism service). Oh, sorry, back to that.

John the apostle wrote of those under his leadership that “there is no greater joy than to know my children walk in truth.” I think that is even more true of parents. Passing on the faith to the next generation through your family is the Bible’s primary and purest form of evangelism. To watch a child grasp it and then embrace it as their own is a marvelous thing; to watch a child continue in that faith is even greater. To be the one who personally baptized my son as a professing disciple is really special, and it kinda felt cool to legally hold him under the water even if for a second…or two…or three. (Oh, c’mon, lighten up. It was getting all serious sounding and spiritual, and I was about to cry. Wait, no I wasn’t.) Sorry, back to the baptism.

My son and I have talked about baptism for a pretty good while. At first, I asked him to wait because he was young, and I really wanted him to have a better grasp of the meaning of baptism and the depth of commitment that it is. I know that sounds strange in our world of “down the aisle and into the tank, the convention wants our yearly rank,” but I wanted it to be his informed, public declaration of faith.

My plan worked too well, and he put it off the second time, stating that he wanted to see if his life matched up to the commitment. I explained to him that was not necessary, that baptism wasn’t about “having arrived.” Still, I found it pretty neat that a child would think that there’s something more to this than “pray the prayer, dip in the pool, now with God you’re really cool.” So we waited.

This year, he and I came back to the question again, and we both felt it was time. I almost cried. No wait, I didn’t.Thanks, left brain.

That brings us to last night. Kris Dekker baptized Colin Dekker, his son and his brother-in-Christ. I could not have been prouder or happier as a dad. Congratulations, Colin. Hold on to Jesus. Nothing’s more important.

Oh…Was that a tear drop that just hit my computer keyboard? I guess you’ll never know the answer, so Wink Martindale is taking his $64,000 and going home. Veneers and all.

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4 responses

10 08 2009
Stephanie Latta

I had to double-check that I was reading your blog and not Brad’s after that first paragraph. It’s truly scary how alike you both are…

10 08 2009
kdekker

I keep hearing that from the Latta family ladies. If this is true, I do feel for you.

10 08 2009
Stephanie Latta

OH! Congrats to Colin, too! What a big step in becoming a man of God!

8 09 2009
Rhonda Osborne

As Charlene Darling once said, “That always makes me cry!” Your blog just made me cry, Kris. I’m proud of Colin’s commitment and of your ALMOST admitting that you were overwhelmed by the joy of the moment. You do have a heart!

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