Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Day 18: Tuesday: I did not think you should fake it

I was baptized at Pleasant Mound Methodist Church in – you will not be surprised – Pleasant Mound, Texas. Pleasant Mound was just that – a small mound just outside Dallas on which sat a small, white, framed Methodist church. I lived in Pleasant Grove, which was not far from Pleasant Mound. The Texans who insisted that these places were “pleasant” exemplify the proclivity of Texans to reassure themselves through exaggeration that it was a good thing to be a Texan. Of course, in the Texas heat even a small group of trees, a pleasant grove, could be quite pleasant.
    Pleasant Mound Methodist was Methodist, but like most folks in that area we were really Baptist, which meant that even though you had been baptized and become a member of the church, you still had to be “saved.” Baptism and membership were Sunday morning events. Saving was for Sunday nights… I wanted to be saved, but I did not think you should fake it.

Was baptism enough, or did you need to be separately “saved”? Did you ever fake expressions of your faith? Give thanks that salvation is already yours, and that you need do nothing more.

Hannah's Child: A Theologian's Memoir
Reading from Stanley Hauerwas Hannah’s Child. A Theologian’s Memoir (Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, UK: Eerdmans, 2010), 1.

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