Back to the field service yesterday morning with Cathy. We had a couple of good calls, and we got a warm welcome from one lady who thanked me for posting the magazines, said how much she enjoyed reading them, and that the advice in them - the Biblical advice - is helping her tackle a serious problem.
We both felt very encouraged by that - as we want people to realise that the Bible will help them right here and now, as well as showing them the way to a wonderful future - life forever in the restored earthly Paradise.
Jackie is out of hospital - rather frail and shaky - the fluey thing hit her so hard. We popped round and took her some flowers yesterday afternoon - and I took her shopping round at lunchtime today after my visit to Maggie. We will do her shopping until she feels OK to drive again.
My bro in law is back in hospital. It does not look good.
The book "Imitate their Faith" which we are using in our Thursday night Bible study is wonderful. Tomorrow we are looking at the faith of Noah who lived, as we do, in a world full of violence.
And I was amazed how much we learnt about Cain and Abel last week - even though Genesis does not say a lot about them. For example, the reason for the deadly rivalry that Cain felt towards his brother may be explained by the names they were given.
I quote from the book:
"Exiled to life outside the garden, Adam and Eve found their existence hard. Yet, when their first child was born, they named him Cain, or "Something Produced," and Eve proclaimed:"I have produced a man with the aid of Jehovah." Her words suggest that she may have had in mind the promise Jehovah made in the garden, foretelling that a certain woman would produce a "seed" or offspring, who would one day destroy the wicked one who had led Adam and Eve astray. (Gen.3:15; 4:1) Did Eve imagine she was the woman in the prophecy and that Cain was the promised "seed"?
If so, she was sadly mistaken. What is more, if she and Adam fed Cain such ideas as he grew up, they surely did his imperfect human pride no good. In time, Eve bore a second son, but we find no such high-flown statements about him. They named him Abel, which may mean "Exhalation", or "Vanity." (Gen.4:2) Did that choice of name reflect lower expectations, as if they put less hope in Abel than in Cain? We can only guess.
Parents today can learn much from those first parents. By your words and actions, will you feed your children's pride, ambition, and selfish tendencies? Or will you teach them to love Jehovah God and seek friendship with him?"