• Kelsey

Not Getting Into Heaven

Once upon a time in a private Christian school in Fort Worth, TX, there was a 17 year old girl who decided to run her mouth.

At my high school, in your sophomore through senior years, you could get inducted into the National Honor Society. Which meant you dressed up nicely and got awarded with a piece of paper saying your grades were good enough to qualify, or something. I believe this ceremony took place in the evening during the spring semester so our parents could take part??? Okay this part is a bit fuzzy because it is only marginally important to this story. I do think we got to wear something extra on our robes at graduation though.

Anyway, so we had the NHS. Well, we also that the CHS: the Christian Honor Society. Now while the NHS was based on grades and academia, the CHS was based on teacher submissions. That's right. Teachers who saw us for 45 minutes a day, five days a week were qualified to determine our "Christian-ness". And as I'm sure all of you guessed it, I wasn't Christian enough.

I just want to make it clear: I am not jaded that I wasn't inducted. I'm really, truly not. I think even back then I knew that the whole thing was stupid and how could our teachers claim certain students were better Christians than others? Especially when they only knew our in-class personas. And if I didn't know it then, I definitely know it now.

Unlike the NHS, the CHS inductions took place in the middle of a school day. Why? No idea. Maybe they didn't want to have to explain to the parents what was going on? Who knows. So in the middle of the day, all the CHS members and inductees went to a special ceremony or something (I didn't get to go so they could've eaten ice cream for all I knew). To distinguish themselves among the gentiles, the members and inductees also got to wear their dress clothes instead of the uniforms the peasants were wearing.

The day of inductions my senior year happened to land on one of the days in speech class where we had to give improv speeches. The way improv speeches worked was: we were called on, had to pick a random topic from a hat or something, and were given like 3 minutes to prepare a 1-2 minute speech on that topic. My topic: "What do I imagine heaven is like?" Being the brat that I was (am?), I knew exactly how to release my frustration and give this speech at the same time.

When my 3 minutes are up, I went up to the front of the class and began: "Well, as you can see, I'm wearing my uniform instead of dress clothes which means that the teachers here don't think I'm a real Christian, so I'll never get to see heaven. But if I were..." The rest was unmemorable, but I'll always remember my opening statement. Yes, I was kind of a brat. I definitely didn't handle the situation the way I probably would now. But I am kind of proud of myself. I stood up for what I considered to be an injustice. Sure, I knew my salvation and worth wasn't based on what some random adults thought. But how many other kids in my class didn't? I think the CHS was a good idea on paper, but not really a great thing in actuality. But that's merely my opinion so who really cares anyway?

By the way, I think I made a B on my speech. Good enough for this gentile.


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