Itches: Baptism

Most itches are minor skin irritations, just a nuisance. They peak in the dog days of August, especially in a wet year like 2016. Mosquito bites, poison ivy, and even old fashioned sweat can trigger the urge to scratch.

Itches can be quite unpleasant and even embarrassing when a guest finds the Preparation H in your medicine cabinet. I looked for humorous video excerpts of people scratch­ing their itches and was rewarded with clips we can’t use in church.

Despite the overwhelming urge to scratch, it turns out the best thing to do is NOT to scratch an itch. I scratched some mosquito bites this week, partly to make a sermon illustration and partly because I just couldn’t resist. Carol was horrified at the red and bleed­ing welts on my leg.

Prevention is the best policy for itches. When going to the garden this time of year, it helps to cover up.

“Scratching an itch” is a metaphor for addressing a felt need. Tomorrow at New Life Church I’m going to talk about an itch some of us (including me) have about baptism. Have you ever wondered why some churches mention baptism so prominently at funerals? Maybe you love it. Maybe you feel uncomfortable about it. You may not feel this religious itch yet, but come on in. You just might get bit!

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