Faith After Confirmation

The Deaconess of our church asked me to speak at the “Evening of Honor” gathering to encourage the confirmands of our church. This was on Saturday and Sunday morning they would be confirmed before the full congregation. What follows is what I decided to say to them.

I’ve been asked, as an elder of this church, to give you some words of wisdom on what it means to be baptized and how that impacts your life after confirmation. 

My own relationship with baptism has been a tumultuous one and it’s only been in the last 10 years that baptism has even made sense to me. So, if you’re worried at all tomorrow, you don’t have all the answers, it’s okay. You don’t have to have all the answers, as long as you’re willing to ask the questions. And you’ve got some great resources all around this room.

For example, Pastor and Miriam taught me something over the summer that honestly was an “a ha!” moment for me.

Defining moments

I played drums at VBS and we sang the song “I’ll Fly Away” except we changed the words to “I’ll Rise Again.” At first, I was a little put off by this because we sang that song at my step dad’s funeral and I still tear up when I hear it. I thought about it for a little while, but I couldn’t get my head around the problem. 

So I asked, “Why are we changing the lyrics?” It was in the morning before VBS started when everybody’s busy, but they took a minute to hear me out and answer the question.

“I’ll fly away” is an uplifting song about how those of us who know Jesus will be with Him in heaven after we die. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s not the whole story. The whole story is even better because one day, when Jesus returns, we’ll be resurrected to new life.

Which brings us back to baptism. How? Romans 6:3-4

Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

Romans 6:3-4 ESV

Now I wish the moment Miriam said we’re changing the lyrics I would’ve put it together and said, “Oh, yeah, that makes sense.” But I didn’t and if I hadn’t asked the question; that’s when doubt and fear start to infect your thinking. Ask the question.

Confirming your baptism

Now I want to turn that around because tomorrow you’ll stand in front of the church and affirm your baptism by answering several questions. It’s all scripted and ceremonial, but the spirit of it is real, so I encourage you to answer sincerely and any burning questions you still have about tomorrow ask tonight. 

But here’s the thing. You’re going to look Pastor, Miriam, and your parents, in the eye, and say I believe what you taught me. I’m paraphrasing. 

The foundation has been laid, first by Christ who died and rose for you, then by baptism where you received forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit, and then by your parents who are raising you in the faith, and Pastor and Miriam have been your formal education in the faith.

But now the era of them asking you questions is over. Not completely, but formally. Now, it’s up to you to make your faith your own. You do that by reading the Bible fervently. Pray without ceasing. Reach out to others with the Good News. Worship with us and ask questions. 

We are encouraged to do this in Scripture in multiples places, but the Apostle Peter wrote in 1 Peter 3:14-16

But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.

1 Peter 3:14-16 ESV

There’s a purpose for all this; We grow in our faith to know Jesus and share Him with others. God calls us to be disciples and make disciples and God never calls us to do something without giving us all the tools we need to do it.

The Bible says Jesus is an ever present help in time of need. He is with us until the end of the age. And, we’re all here for you, too.


One last thing. One last passage I want to share with you for encouragement because the world is in a bad place right now. You probably already know, you’re the most connected generation in history, so you’re inundated daily with all the STUFF that’s going on. 

Side note, don’t believe everything you hear. Be discerning. Some people are right, some are wrong, some people really do just want to see the world burn. Whenever you hear some bit of news keep Proverbs 18:17 close at hand.

The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.

Proverbs 18:17 ESV

But that’s not the passage I’m talking about.

As the world tries to distract you from God, steal your joy and your faith. Sin encourages you down the wrong path, or you let sin encourage you down the wrong path. Life often leaves us feeling unsettled. But honestly even when things are going really well, remember this passage in good times and bad:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. 

John 1:1-5 ESV

We learn a lot in those words. Jesus is God and always will be. Jesus is the creator of all things. Jesus is life. Jesus is light and the darkness has not overcome it. No matter what happens, or how many trials life throws at you, or how hard “the darkness” tries to overwhelm you, remember: Jesus wins and we’re on His team.

To quote a VBS song, shine the light of Jesus. The same light you shine, shines on you. 

In other words, to bring this full circle, when you affirm your faith tomorrow and start the next chapter in your faith journey, that same Jesus is with you and always will be and we’re here for you, too.

Thank you.






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