Jack lived in the small, former mining town of Redemption, Oregon; born and raised like the other 47 residents. It was 9 in the morning and he was ready to begin the day like everyone else in town.
He drank down his cup of black Joe and stared at the old photo of his parents on the wall. They moved to Redemption a few years after they were married. For the life of him, Jack couldn’t understand their reasoning. Few people moved there, most just felt they were “grandfathered” in. In fact, everyone he knew who was born in Redemption left for Portland where a guy could let loose and really live it up.
Two minutes later Jack was standing in the shower. The hot water streamed over his head, working like a percolator. He couldn’t get his parents out his mind. They were old-fashioned, religious rather than spiritual, conservative in their politics and lifestyle. Except for her Tuesday Bible study at the church, Mother busily kept the house, occasionally stopping to pray or play a tune on the piano from the always open hymnal. Dad worked hard in the silver mine and was home by 6 for dinner and the evening with Mother on the porch as she read the Bible to him. They loved each other like a black-and-white tv show.
It was too much. Jack finished shaving, dowsed his face with Old Spice, and finished tightening the necktie he always joked was his noose. He felt like life in Redemption had him around the neck and its grip kept tightening.
He picked up his car keys and stopped at the door. His eye caught the photo of his parents again. Longingly he said to himself, “Someday I’ll figure out what I’m missing, but it will have to be after church today.”
… having a form of godliness but denying its power (Second Timothy 3:5).