Tuesday, April 14, 2009

For Me, It Was...

Here's a great thing about Easter Sunday - even the Blair's can manage to make it to church on this most sacred day. I was born ridiculously honest, so I make it no secret to anyone that we struggle with going to church for various reasons. But I can only think of two Easter Sundays in my life that I haven't made to church - one was when Madalyn had the flu two years ago, and the other was a more personal intestinal issue I had and won't get into right now, no matter how honest and forthcoming I tend to be.

There seemed to be a running theme this Sunday with the service. A video was played where several people talked about when they were saved, and all through the service, various members of the praise team and band gave their date. They all said the following: "For me, it was..." They each inserted the month and year they accepted Jesus as their Savior. So it got me to thinking about when I was baptized.

For me, it was - well, I don't remember the month or the year. I just remember I was seven. I can remember that because I first told my dad I wanted to be baptized when I was six. He asked me a few questions and quickly told me I was too young. And I was too young indeed. Then a year later, I asked again. So my father obliged my desire to become a follower of Jesus. I think I still have the card I passed to the preacher when I walked down the aisle that night. It simply said that I wanted to be baptized and that I wanted my father to be the one to baptize me. My most striking memory about the event was that I wore my undies in the baptismal, and afterwords thought the whole world could tell I didn't have any on underneath my dress.

Probably, if your most striking memory of your baptism is that you didn't have any panties on under your dress afterwards, you were too young to understand the depth of the act in which you just participated. I didn't have a clue what it really meant. I just remember being completely terrified of going to hell as a child - completely terrified. And in my mind, baptism was the one act that could most certainly save me. If only it were that simple.

I had no idea the road that lied ahead - the mistakes, the wrong turns, the blatant disobedience. I was still completely innocent at the age of seven. I am sure I never dreamed I would taste a sip of a beer much less get drunk. I never dreamed I would be confronted with drugs. I never dreamed I would be disrespected and violated by men who claimed to care about me. I just never dreamed about what life would really be like - to me, it was so simple. I'll be baptized and just be a Christian. It was such a black and white existence then. So when did all the grey seep in?

Who knows where it started - the spiritual battle within. Good versus evil. Right versus wrong. But it is clear to me now as I look back at the decision I made some 25 years ago that I had no idea what it meant or what it would take to be a child of God. And I still don't. But I am trying. Maybe some days better than others. Maybe my life doesn't look like another's journey. Maybe it's not that pretty and still uncertain. But it's mine. All the twists and turns and screw ups. Every last detail is mine. And I only hope that one day all these parts will come together and make perfect sense.


Nana's Notes said...

OH, SWEET GIRL!! Yes, it WILL come together, I promise.I remember how hard life was at your age. You have had your share of bumps. But hang on....you already have the answers within you.

ctstrickland said...

Just keep trying! You learn something everyday. You'll get there and you will be better for it.You have so much to give!

Erika said...

We have beach baptisms here and sometimes I want to go because I was probably too young as well the original time (November 1987 :) ) Anyway, you know I know. Love you!