BY: ANDREW YIM
About a month ago, I was baptized at Alameda Beach and it was an extraordinary feeling knowing I was receiving Jesus’ love. I was nervous as I was sharing details of my life to other brothers and sisters in Christ. The water was freezing but I felt a sense of euphoria pass over me and felt like a completely new individual. The love and support I received from everyone really touched me. It was amazing to know that I was going to receive the greatest gift of all, the love of Jesus Christ. I knew that I would never be alone again because Jesus would always be there. Luke 3:21-22 (ESV) says, “Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form, like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.’” God is actively searching for individuals who are lost, and He wants us to experience His love. This verse highlights that baptism is a commitment to pledge our lives to God and to His plan for us.
Before I truly accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I definitely had a hard time accepting God. I know that part of my anger at God was the loneliness I felt throughout high school. I went to church in high school because my mom wanted me to, but I never really felt close to people in my youth group. I really wanted to find a sense of community but I felt that no one wanted or loved me. I was obsessed with the belief that having a close group of friends would bring me happiness because I felt lonely and isolated from everyone. I blamed God because I had seen so many other people who were happy and I wanted a taste of that happiness. For my freshman year of college, I was accepted into Purdue University in Indiana. I decided to leave California because I wanted a fresh start to figure out where God stood in my life. When I moved to Indiana, I attended Faith Baptist Church in Lafayette, Indiana. I thought I was growing closer to God at the time. However, when I moved back home, I had a hard time adjusting. I grew bitter and angry as the summer went on because I pursued activities that were not pursuing God. I was worried about starting over and I was looking for a church where I could grow.
I think I began to see God in a real way for the first time a month ago when I came to Livingwater Church in Berkeley. When I walked into the church, I was not sure if this would be the right church. However, I was completely wrong because everyone was immediately so friendly. I joined an amazing fellowship and I met some solid Christian brothers and sisters. The Presence Fellowship has been an amazing experience because the fellowship has allowed me to renew my love for God. Being a part of this fellowship has allowed me to reaffirm my covenant with God because God reminded me that though people can be lonely, through Him I will be able to overcome so much. Over the past few weeks, I have noticed a spiritual change in my life. I am letting go of my resentment and accepting the Lord every day. I have a long way to go but I have accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
I will not lie; it has been a struggle to follow God’s commands. I still struggle with the numerous issues that I had struggled with before I was baptized. However, I know it is going to be a slow process and I need to keep pursuing the Word and reminding myself that Jesus Christ died for my sins.