DO NOT WORRY
22 He said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25 And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? 26 If then you are not able to do so small a thing as that, why do you worry about the rest? [Luke 12:22-26]
I could not control the content or duration of the RCIA class last year. Nor could I control who in the Catholic world cared or didn’t care about my “insights.” The Church as the Body of Christ is built of imperfect people, I being chief among them. Time was on my side. My husband and I would eventually come to peace on this change in our lives; the years would see to that.
Years…what did that mean for baptism? Could I wait years to finally be baptized?
Driving down life’s highway, my hand on the gearshift, I felt an odd movement under my feet…a mysterious car feeling…new and unexpected. It passed. And I returned to my thoughts.
Baptism? Never being able to cite chapter and verse, I knew full well the significance of baptism in the life of a Christian. Repent and get baptized. Even Jesus, the Source of Faith, consented…no, he didn’t simply consent…he sought out and determined that He would be baptized. And He was.
And when Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. [Mat 3:16]
In all the many years when I thought I had been baptized, I knew my fellowship with Christ was secure. But what about today? Sure…I won’t be condemned. But then what?
On life’s highway, the movement under the floorboard under my feet in the car returned…with a sound. It was not a good sound. Looking ahead to next year, I decided to ignore it…the sound.
RCIA? I could wait. Catholic Church? I would wait. Eucharist? I would have to wait. But baptism?
My thoughts were jolted. Another huge bad car noise. Not again! We had serviced the car before Easter…and here I was on a long journey…hearing strange sounds and feeling strange movements under the floorboard under my feet in the car.
Grabbing my cell phone, I called our mechanic. “The car. It’s making these new awful sounds under my feet. The car jerks. I’m going fast, and then the car slows down. I put the car into drive, but it doesn’t want to go into drive. It’s like it’s trying to make up its mind.”
“Slippage,” he said. “The gears in the transmission are slipping.” When you get home, bring the car in.
Two days later, a lesson from my mechanic on transmissions, and twenty minutes on Google, I learned a lot about the speed of a car. It can go fast. And it can go slow. Changes in speed are handled in the transmission with its gears and fluids and solenoids.
A car can change speeds, but there’s a lot involved in making it happen. Kind of like people when we change speeds. Especially like me.
Baptism? Was yesterday soon enough? Yesterday? Tomorrow? My transmission was grinding.
22 After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he spent some time there with them and baptized. 23 John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim because water was abundant there; and people kept coming and were being baptized…[John 3:22-24]
That night, my head on the pillow, I kept thinking about the day in the future when I would eventually be baptized. I did not worry. But I could not rest.
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