Sep 27, 2010

Should I Stay or Should I Go Now...

"If I stay there will be trouble....if I go there will be double...." Remember that song?

There are so many decisions in life. Some are little, like..."what will I eat for lunch"...some are big, like "should I move my family to the mission field?" It is true that decisions affect the people in our lives and can create chain reactions that go farther and wider than we can imagine. So how do we know in which direction to go?

I was reading in John the other day, about the time when Jesus walked on water: John 6:16. I pictured myself as a disciple. Jesus had just fed 5,000 people and sent them away so he could have some time alone.

In this story, the disciples wait for Jesus at the docks until well after sunset but when he doesn't come back they take off in the boat for the other side of the lake. Here is where they get into trouble. A storm catches them in the middle of the lake, and as they struggle against the wind and waves they see what they think is a ghost on the water. Of course, it isn't a is Jesus, and once they realize that it is him, "they were eager to let him in the boat."

That last line reminded me of how often in life I leave Jesus behind, not waiting for him to help me make decisions. And then...when I am in trouble...I am "eager" to turn to him so he will save me from the mess I made.

So what do you think...should the disciples have waited for him at the dock? If they would have waited...they may have had some valuable time with Jesus. He only had a 3 year ministry, so I can only assume that every minute was valuable to him.

But if they had waited for him...they would never have seen him as master of the wind and waves. Maybe the decision wasn't the important thing...maybe they were supposed to know Jesus was with them all of the time, regardless of his physical presence.

Will we ever truly understand the fact that He is always with us? That we have authority over things of this world because He lives in us? I am not sure I will ever get the immensity of that statement, but I am willing to get to know him better, as a person, as the son of God, and as my Savior.

I would love to know your thoughts.

Sep 8, 2010

Remembering Times Past

Yesterday I found something really special in the reception room of the hospital: a Scofield Reference Bible in the Authorized King James Version, of course. The first printing of this Bible was in 1909 by the Oxford Printing Press. I don't know when this copy was printed - but it is in great condition, so it can't be that old.

The thing that makes this Bible so special to me is that it is the same edition my Great Grandmother Addie Semion used to read. I recognized the spine of the book immediately and when I opened it I almost expected to see the birth dates of my aunts and uncles written in the front cover. The typeface was so familiar, and I closed my eyes and let myself drift back to when she used to read the Word to her grandchildren and great grandchildren. If you slept over at Maw Maw Addie's house, you were going to listen to her read the Bible every night. There was no option, but you know...I don't ever remember any of us putting up a fight.

We almost awaited it eagerly. We would all pile up on the green vinyl sofa-bed in her living room, pull the handmade patchwork quilts up around our shoulders, prop up on our elbows and listen. She would read from no where in particular, sometimes she took requests - and we always wanted to hear of the epic battle scenes, or the famous stories of Noah's Arc or Sampson and Delilah. She would also share with us, the notes at the bottom of the page, and it was from her Bible that I learned what those little numbers in the middle meant. She would flip back to the concordance, and show us the maps at the back of the book.

So...what did I do...standing in the reception room at the hospital...holding this little link to my past? I took the Bible. The Bible is the most shoplifted book in the world - it's true. Ha Ha...I am not really sure if this is stealing. I am still working on that one. I can't ask permission because Martin and Wendy won't be back from the States until Friday, so until then...I have moved it to my apartment for safe keeping. :-)

The Bible even smells like Maw Maw's house - like an old library, and I like that. There aren't many things I have to remember her by, so this - while it lasts - is very special.

So here's to past traditions, and to making new ones. We get to decide what we pass on to our children and what will it be? What traditions are you making in your home?