Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Why I don't make a good Baptist
Every group has them. They are the boundary markers that get set up to tell whether a person is "in" or "out." These markers could be written or unwritten, spoken or unspoken, yet either way, after a time, you know what they are, because they will make their way to the forefront of conversation, and judgements will be passed down accordingly. Really, these boundary markers are nothing more than values commonly held by that group. Values help define identity and create community. Values are a good thing, but problems arise when they start to contradict one another. My problem is that I've been told I make really good beer. Our ales even won first and second place this past Sunday at our local brewpub's homebrewer contest. It was a very exciting experience to watch people try your craft and comment glowingly on it. One person said, "You've got a gift here." (of course to some that's like saying you have a gift for making good porn films) When we won, there was the need to call people to let them know, but none of my Baptist friends were on the list. I know they would not be able to share the joy. That's what makes this mid-life shift a hard one for me to reconcile. I wish I could just set the fence posts and run the wire that says alcohol is of the devil. It would be tons easier on me, but I can't seem to view the world that way anymore. To create such tight boundaries would limit the places I could go, not just for my sake, but for other people who live in outside territory. My world was safer before, but in comparison to what I am finding, it was more black and white also. I see more color today, more beauty, more danger and more risk. Cheers.