Last Sunday, Autumn Brooke was baptized in the Pacific Ocean by her pastor, Phil, and her grandpa Hodge. She said she wanted to be baptized "to show the world that I am a Christian."
It was a cold, windy day at Hollywood Beach in Oxnard, California, but Autumn and three others braved the chilly water to be baptized. As Autumn came up out of the water, it struck me that this was my last child to be baptized. It was a moment I will never forget. For Eric and me, it was a ceremony, a rite of passage, that we have always wanted for our daughters. For Autumn, it was a declaration, not of independence, but--in the words of Steven Curtis Chapman-- "a declaration of dependance on the one who gave his life" for all of us. To say that "I am proud of Autumn" would be weak words indeed because the feelings I had on Sunday were much more powerful; feeling of thankfulness to God for bringing our daughters this far and a feeling of joy for Autumn's decision to follow God. Below are a few pictures and a very short video of the baptism.
|The family at Hollywood Beach|
|Phil, Autumn and Papa Hodge wading into the water.|
|Autumn being baptized.|
|Papa Hodge & Autumn.|
|Autumn & Pastor Phil.|