January 4, 2023
Peek Behind the Curtain
September 14, 2022 | Andy Lynch
Do you want a peek behind the curtain?
There’s a long-running show on HBO called, “Hard Knocks” that takes viewers behind the scenes of an NFL football team during training camp. It’s long-running because we love getting to see what we can’t usually see. We enjoy knowing about the process and getting special access to things.
Well guess what? If you are reading this, I consider you a VIP at Kingsway, so you get a backstage pass to what happened a couple of Sundays ago. The planning had been happening for a few weeks. Pastor Matt had told us that the text for the sermon on August 28 would lead to a strong invitation for baptism. So how would we be ready, if people felt the call of God to get baptized?
I prepared my Connect Team with the questions to ask if people came forward. Our Kids and Student Teams had representatives ready to counsel those that would fall in their area. The worship team switched up the order of service to give people time to hear from God and to respond. Sunday morning came, and we were ready. One baptism was already planned and we had gotten a Facebook message overnight about another. So before the 9 am service, we had 2 baptisms confirmed and were ready. They were powerful moments in their own right: A grandma baptizing her teenage grandson and an 8th grader baptizing his best friend, another 8th grader. Then came the 11 am service. Pastor Matt closed communion and invited people to walk down to the front corner of the room with him if they were ready to be baptized. Michele was ready. She stood immediately and went to one of our Connect Team members and talked. Then came Nife and Ethan, and then Nicholas, each with a unique story of their own, and each wanting to be baptized. A couple other folks had questions or needed prayer. The Connect Team was beaming! This was what they were there for: to listen, to pray and to guide.
Once those conversations were done, our friends were ushered backstage where they got to interact with more of our staff team. Megan was taking the names and filling out baptism certificates; Ben was helping direct traffic; Brett was getting ready to baptize; I was halfway down the ramp directing in the water; Daniel was communicating with the worship team; Darrin was connecting with the students as they emerged from the water; Rob was giving out towels and taking pictures. It was madness! It was amazing! It was the Kingdom of God in action.
One more baptism happened after the service. Seven in all. Seven lives surrendered to the mighty work of Jesus on the cross.
Will we have another Sunday like this one? Pastor Matt’s answer is clear. “When the text points to it, we will invite people to be baptized.”
The pool is always open. Maybe next Sunday is your day. You can let us know here.