Working through some chapter questions in a book… this chapter being on areas of our lives that we hide and on feeling unworthy or “less than”.
I’d grown up in a non-church-going home, and had become a Christian in 7th grade at an event.
The church I started attending a bit later was not used to having teens with absolutely no sunday school background who didn’t know all of the usual stories and verses… and things went pretty poorly.
The second incident that came to mind of feeling unworthy and less than others was here… when after being really into things and learning for 2 years, when it came time at the end of 9th grade for the teens to become full members, I wasn’t allowed to do so… under excuses stemming from my not being baptized, which they wouldn’t let me do because my parents didn’t attend.
A baptist church… which believes that baptism is essential for salvation… refusing to baptize. I think this may well be the biggest insult they could give someone.
To say that I felt less than and unworthy was an understatement… but then, not an uncommon feeling at all with that church.
A few months before this, I’d received a birthday party invitation in the mail for a surprise slumber party for one of the girls in the group. It said to show up at a certain business at a certain time, with sleeping bag etc… and of course not to mention it beforehand because it was a secret.
I was so excluded from the other members, girls especially, that I automatically assumed this to be a trick by some of the popular girls to make me look stupid… as if they didn’t seem to be trying to do that enough at meetings.
As it turned out, to my surprise, there was really a party.. but the invites had been made by the girls mother… sent to all of the girls in the group. Even knowing the party actually existed, I still felt like they wouldn’t have been thrilled if I had shown up even though I was technically invited.
Fortunately, we moved pretty soon after the membership ceremony… so I soon started going to a church with one of my friends whose boyfriend had a car… but sometimes I still have to stop myself and wonder whether feelings of “less than“ I get from certain church people is truly based on the situation, and how much it’s being influenced by the past rejection experience as a baptist.