“Spiritual maturity is baptizing a friend.”
By Justin Horey
Ask most any person at Mosaic Christian Church in Elkridge, Maryland, “What is the most important thing at Mosaic,” and there’s a good chance they will tell you, “It’s when we baptize someone.”
MCC is just nine years old (the church will celebrate its 10th anniversary this fall). In that brief time, Mosaic has baptized more than 500 new believers. Church planter and lead pastor Carl Kuhl said the reason is simple: “At Mosaic, a ‘win’ is baptism.”
For the past few years, Kuhl and his staff have set a goal to baptize 10 percent of the church’s average attendance every year. With weekend attendance surpassing 1,000 in 2015, that goal translates to more than 100 baptisms per year. Since Mosaic first set the 10 percent baptisms goal, Kuhl said, the church has hit its target more often than not.
At Mosaic, the staff views baptism not only as a sign of conversion, but as a mark of spiritual maturity. Kuhl said, “We often tell our people that ‘spiritual maturity is baptizing a friend.’”
Mosaic constantly challenges people to pray for their lost friends, and the staff leads by example. Every Monday morning, Mosaic’s pastors gather to pray for the hearts of specific unsaved people in their lives. Kuhl said, “As a staff, we consistently pray for lost friends by name. And we ask our people, ‘Who is the lost person in your life you’re praying for?’”
The results have been dramatic, but Kuhl acknowledges not every prayer is answered quickly. He admits to occasionally being discouraged about praying for “the same names over and over”—including his own neighbor, who has yet to receive Christ and is now on the verge of divorce. This honesty and openness is also a hallmark of Mosaic. But the transparency—whether from the pulpit in Kuhl’s sermons or in Mosaic’s small groups—is not a gimmick. It’s about the gospel. “There is no pretension here,” Kuhl said. “We are open about our brokenness. And we are open about how Christ is changing us.”
Late in 2017, Mosaic launched a capital campaign to raise funds for a new, larger facility. One of the campaign videos celebrated Mosaic’s first 500 baptisms; it featured some of the people who have been immersed since 2008. One of the new believers in that video is Bob, who first visited Mosaic because his son was playing in the worship band. He had been an atheist for 40 years and had a lot of questions about faith—too many questions, he thought.
Bob felt like other Christians had “given up on him” because of his questions, but Carl Kuhl did not. Mosaic Christian did not. Two years ago, after four decades of asking questions, Bob found his answers in Jesus Christ. He was Mosaic Christian Church’s 239th baptism.
See the video celebrating Mosaic’s first 500 baptisms at mosaicchristian.org/greater-video.
Justin Horey is a writer, musician, and the founder of Livingstone Marketing. He lives in Southern California.