Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Once again...

we are at my favorite place on earth, Seneca Lake. One reason why I love it here:

My older daughter took that picture last night as we sat around the fire talking, toasting marshmellows, eating s'mores, and drinking coffee.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Two Trees

During our family Bible study this morning we discussed something that I had never really put into words before. We were talking about how the Bible is not only God's Word (inspired, inerrant, infallible) but also a great work of literature with all types/genres of writing in it(narrative, poetry, philosophical exposition, hymns, law, etc.) as well as all literary devices and great over-arching metaphors throughout. It's the greatest work of literature of all time. One of the symbols we see throughout the Bible is the tree: in the Garden--the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; in Psalm 1--the godly man as a tree planted by the water while the ungodly man is the tree that withers; in Revelation, the tree of life; and finally, the cross as a tree. We also see fruit used as a symbol: in the Garden (although I believe it was a real, edible fruit, it's also symbolic,) and the fruit of the Spirit; the word fruit is used 75 times in the New Testament.

Now the thing I had never really put into words before: In the Garden, Adam and Eve ate fruit off a tree, thus losing the innocence wherein they were created, and falling from that state into a state of sin. On the cross, Christ the Firstfruits of man ("But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep" I Cor. 15:20) was placed up on a tree and sacrificed atoning for our sin and allowing us to one day--in heaven--return to that state of innocence.

I think I need to do a word study on tree and fruit in the Bible to examine this symbolism more. I mean, I've always known that these words are used frequently, and I've heard sermons about them, but the idea of the fruit coming down off the tree and then Christ being put up on the tree is one I had never truly meditated on before...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Conventional Wisdom Says I Should Be Happy...

...but I'm sad. Google the word "mother-in-law" and you'll find these website gems:

"Mother-In-Law Stories and Mother-In-Law Jokes,"
"Mother-in-Law HELL » Mother-in-Law Advice and Mother-in-Law Stories,"
"Dealing with Mother-in-Law Conflicts -," and
"I Hate My Mother In Law | An Anonymous Group with Personal Stories ...."
Lovely, isn't it?

Most people assume that I would be happy that my mother-in-law and father-in-law left today to go to Kenya for a year to teach at a boarding school for missionary kids and other American students in Africa. (I think they also have African students.) And while I'm happy for them that they have this incredible opportunity, I'm sad for myself, my husband, and our children. We have been blessed to live near them from 1996-2002, and now again from 2007-the present. My mother-in-law is one of my best friends, and I talk to her on the phone nearly every day. My children love going to "Mimi and Papa's" house, and are a teeny bit spoiled by their grandmother (not in a bad way at all---just a little bit of indulgence now and then.)
While we lived in North Carolina from 2002-2006 they frequently came for visits, even surprising the kids a couple of times, and Eric and me once! My heart is too heavy right now to write much more....this is going to be a weird year not having them around....