My name is Natalie DiMaggio. I am 14 and an incoming freshman at Mount Hebron High School.

I grew up in a Christian home learning about God and the Bible. I was taught that I was a sinner, and that Jesus died on the cross to save me from my sins. In maybe second or third grade, a friend inspired me to trust in Jesus. So, on an Easter Sunday morning at church, I repeated a prayer to be saved.

However, nothing really changed about my life. I didn’t know what, if anything, to do next. I was the same person as I was before I prayed. The truth that Jesus died to save me was something that stuck not because of its transforming power, but because I had learned about it from a young age.

In late elementary school and early middle school, I started some spiritual practices, such as reading my Bible more. However, this time wasn’t changing me. I was doing the practices but didn’t find that it was transforming how I lived.

In the summer after 6th grade, I began to understand that I had done many things wrong and was faced with guilt. Knowing I could not fix these things I felt shame. This was a painful and hard time, where God’s grace shone through, and when I really understood that it is for me, that I truly need Jesus for forgiveness, and that I can experience true freedom in Christ. I thanked Jesus for this freedom and rededicated my life to him.

There was change that happened in me then. I had more of a passion and love for him. I believe that Jesus transformed my life and is working in my heart! He has brought me from a place of selfishness to a place where I am clean and blameless in front of him! I know that my story is just beginning, and that Jesus will be with me through it all. I have chosen to depend on him for forgiveness and salvation and make him Lord over my life.

I know that I am far from perfect and that I need Jesus for all aspects of my life. I am not coming to the water with everything figured out and with no problems. Instead, I am coming trusting in Jesus’ sacrifice for me on the cross for grace and forgiveness, and I am coming to declare publicly that I am a redeemed daughter of our King! This is why I am being baptized.

— Natalie DiMaggio, Getting Baptized July 2018

Interested in getting #dunked during our July Baptism Weekend?

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