During our picnic last Sunday (Aug 24) we dedicated Naomi Viola Barham and Annabelle Hale to our Lord! The mothers of each couple shared their commitments as a family before the fathers prayed on behalf their family. Pastor Ed shared from Deuteronomy 6:4-9 the connection between our devotion to God and our children. Our devotion to God is perhaps best captured in a few Old Testament verses, referred to as the Shema in Hebrew. Jews would pray the Shema regularly as an extension to their daily prayers. Christians often quote the Shema when it comes to our devotion to God, but unfortunately just the first part. We tend to leave out the part about kids.
"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."
In anticipation of the children's future baptism, Ed conducted the dedication by a body of water. The parents committed themselves to the hope of one day seeing Naomi and AnnaBelle, through their own profession of faith (Col 2:12), express their faith through baptism.