After announcing that both boys would be dedicated at Eagle Brook next month, a few people have asked what a dedication is and why my children aren't being baptized. So, to the best of my ability, I am going to try and set the record straight. Please note, these are my interpretations:)
Eagle Brook does not do infant baptisms. In fact, our church back home does not do infant baptisms either. Instead, we have dedications. On August 22nd, both our boys will take part in this celebration. Basically, as parents, Brandon and I will stand in front of our family and friends at Eagle Brook and pledge to raise our kids based on biblical truth. We will make a public commitment to teach our boys about what it means to be followers of Christ and live a "Christ-Centered" life. There is no water, no dunking, etc. Instead, just a verbal announcement. As young children, Griffin and Grayson can't quite understand what it means to be a Christian. So, as parents, we are making a statement that essentially says we are taking on the responsibility of raising our children in a home where Christ is present, and we promise to point our kids towards a relationship with God.
Baptisms still occur at our church, but they are not performed on small children. Instead, older children on up can CHOOSE to be baptized. See, we hold the belief that being baptized should be a choice---a decision a Christ follower chooses to make. Baptisms are held for people to make a public declaration of their OWN faith. Because the stories in the bible are of adults being baptized by being dunked, that is the practice we follow. Unlike some denominations, we do not believe that baptism is what "saves" a person. Instead, baptism is a public display of a change that has taken place in our heart after accepting Christ. Our church once put it like this: "baptism is to salvation as a wedding ceremony is to a marriage. It’s an external declaration of an internal event." Some choose to be baptized shortly after deciding to follow Jesus, others wait. I was baptized as a senior in high school, whereas Brandon has decided to be baptized this August.
Please note that this is just a small portion of our faith journey, and we in no way shape or form want our beliefs on baptism to separate ourselves from other people who share our faith in Christ.
So, there you have it. I hope I explained things correctly:)