Most mornings I wash my face. It’s not necessarily some beauty routine but it at least gets the gunk out of my eyes and removes any drool that has collected from the pool on my pillow.
Most evenings I wash my face. It removes what I may have on my face from peanut butter to something I absentmindedly smeared all over. It removes the mascara that has fallen under my eyes because after 3 pm no matter how much coffee I have consumed I start rubbing my eyes.
More than once a day I splash water onto my face, the same element that washed over my forehead at my baptism.
Martin Luther is known for reforming the church. He had great big and legitimate concerns about what was being preached to the people. He was concerned what was being preached was not lining up with scriptures (If you want to know more about him ask me and I’d love to answer questions and point you in directions where answers can be found.)
The church was preaching that it was some how in our control to save ourselves. The church was wrong.
Luther said a lot of things and wrote a lot of things. One of his more popular (especially in Lutheran circles) and often quoted phrases is:
When you wash your face
remember your baptism.
I don’t remember my baptism. I was too young to know what I was wearing, what the temperature was outside. I was too young to know what that Sunday morning looked like.
What I do know and can remember and dwell upon is what happened because of that water and because of those words. All of these good gifts are because of Jesus and in spite of me…yet for me. (How beautiful is that)
having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the un-circumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him. Colossians 2:12-15
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Galatians 3:27
Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into is 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.
For if we have been united with him in death we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you must all consider yourselves dead to sin and alive in God in Christ Jesus. Romans 6:1-18
If you can’t remember the weather of the day, your outfit, or how the water felt, think on these things when you wash your face….
Think on these things that scripture tells us we have because of our baptisms when you wash your face, when your kids are on your last nerve, when you have convinced yourself you are unlovable, when you would rather punch your husband than kiss him, when the sun is shining, when the clouds roll in….
Think on these things when it looks like all hope is lost. Think on these things when life is a dream. Think on these things in all the in between.