Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Christian Baptism (10/18/07)
- TITLE: A Funny Thing Happened In The Baptismal Pool
By Rhonda Hensley
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It was during Vacation Bible School. The preacher gave a compelling summons to the front asking that all the children that wanted to go to heaven when they died to come forward and pray. “If you repeat this prayer after me, you will go to heaven one day” he declared. Of course no one wanted to die and not go to heaven. Her friends had wasted no time sliding from the pew and heading to the front of the church. There she was standing solo in the pew with everyone peering at her. “Does she want to go to hell?” their eyes seemed to inquire. Why she had been coming to church since she was a baby. “Hey, who do they think they are?” she thought to herself and hurriedly made her way to the front of the church. No one had to know her real reason for coming forward; they just needed to see her up there. Several weeks later all the new converts were baptized. It meant nothing more to Edna than being dunked in her washtub.
Shortly after graduating from high school, Edna began to realize she was masquerading a life of hypocrisy. Down deep in her soul she knew that she was nothing more than an actress. The hole was deeper than ever. “I went forward when I was eight,” she relentlessly tried to assure herself. “I have been a good person,” she silently repeated But a second voice seem to overpower her conscience. “You have been living a lie,” it echoed in her head. “How can I admit this in front of everybody at my church that has trusted me?” she wondered.
The weight became too heavy – the burden was more than she could continue to carry around. Edna headed down to the alter bearing her soul to the preacher. “I only went forward because my friends did,” she admitted. “I have been too embarrassed to admit the truth but I can no longer live this lie,” she confessed.
Thirty-five years have passed since that day. Life has changed.
The new preacher had only been at the church for several months. He preached about “Believer’s Baptism” and how he had went up as a child and repeated a prayer just because his friends had and that they were all baptized at the same time. He continued to explain that when he was nineteen he was baptized as a Christian.” I had never really thought of it that way,” Edna pondered. She knew that it was time to go all the way with her public profession. She proceeded to the front and shared her desire to be baptized as a Christian to the new pastor.
What Edna didn’t share with the pastor was her phobia.
As they stood in the baptismal pool, she felt him wrap her hands around his arm; he then slowly lifted his hand to her face placing the folded washcloth over her nose. Pastor Gary had been at this for sometime now and knew exactly how to stand to ensure the safety of his converts as he immersed them into the water. As he proceeded to take Edna down into the water, he felt a slight resistance. He pressed a little harder but to his disbelief she wasn’t budging. Edna unconsciously pressed forward a little harder and the preacher not realizing exactly what was going on added a little more force.
All Edna could think about was her fear of water. The closer the time approached for her to be immersed into the pool, the more her heart pounded. It was her natural instinct to resist what brought her such trembling -- going under.
Did she fail to mention that to the new preacher?
To the congregation’s surprise the only thing visible in the baptismal window were two legs sticking in the air with sock-feet attached. There was no sign of Edna or the preacher.
Eventually, the two of them immerged from the water, unscathed from the incident – at least physically.
Ha ha ha, a roar of laughter exploded among the congregation. After all, it was the funniest thing anyone had ever seen happen in the baptismal pool.
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