Monday, July 28, 2014

Theology with Walker

Walker has never been much for asking questions, and when he does, I’m never sure whether my answers are going to be what he’s looking for.  I never thought that at age thirty eight, he and I would be discussing theology.
 Last night after we got home from the lake he was finishing up a slice of pizza and playing with the pictures on his iPhone, when he showed me a picture his favorite brother in law John had sent him of the Dossal hanging of Jesus from our former church.  The hanging shows a stylized Jesus with open bleeding hands and feet, and it always really kind of creeped me out, but Walker seemed to be delighted with it.

“When did I first become a believer?” he asked.
“Well, you’ve been going to Young Life for a couple of years now, I guess,” dating my response to the first time he started talking about being the “World’s Greatest Believer”. 

“No, I mean before that.”
“Well, I suppose you’ve always been a Believer, since you were baptized when you were a little baby and we promised to teach you about Jesus being raised from the dead to save us from our sins.  We promise that every time we baptize someone.” 

Dead silence for a bit.
“Is our church American?”

“Well, it’s in America, so I guess so.”
“No, I mean…Oh forget it.”

“Our church is a Christian Church, because we believe that Jesus was resurrected.  There are a lot of churches that believe that all over the world, and ours is in America.”
“How did it get here?”

“Well, after Jesus died his disciples told the Good News of his resurrection to more and more people around where they lived, and as more and more people knew about him, some of them eventually came to America.  Some of them are Episcopalians like us, some are Presbyterians like the ones where the boys go to school, and others are Catholic like where you went to school….”

“What are the ones at Hutchison?” (The school where the girls attended.)
“It’s not part of a church…it’s just a school.”

I can’t imagine how impossibly difficult the world must seem to Walker as his eyes are gradually opening beyond his family and friends.  I’m not sure he gets the picture I tried to paint for him, and I may have to answer more questions from time to time, but I’m truly fascinated to see his faith developing and his curiosity expanding beyond the boundaries of family and friends.  His questions lead me along paths I never expected to wander.