Health-wise, I'm feeling great. Praise God! I continue to have little to no pain. I'm walking every day and I'm enjoying the beautiful weather that California is known for.
Our family from Seattle came down Memorial Day weekend (Thanks, Marco, Suzanne, Audrey, Olivia and Nathan) and we enjoyed the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and more.
Plans for June include a trip back to the Yosemite area mid-month with close friends and a trip down to the Deep South at the end of the month to see family there.
Current projects include finishing our wedding scrapbook (I finally finished the "official" album in time for our 16th wedding anniversary!) and converting the slides from my family's childhood. That's been a fun project to work on.
I have finished writing through Exodus. Once again, it's important to remember that I'm not a Bible scholar and that my insights to what I'm reading may not be what others see. I do get into commentaries, but most of the time, I ask God to reveal himself to me in ways I can understand.
I've already written my impressions of the plagues.
I've waded through all the instructions about the Tent of Meeting, the Law, lampstands, lamps, incense, oils, etc. The instructions are very, very detailed! Nothing left to chance on how they should be built. As I tried to understand why this was important, I learned that God used a familiar culture to the Israelites in the building of the Tabernacle and all the accessories.
Egyptian kings had very similar tents of meetings. They had priests/servants/officers who were the only ones who could go into their tents of meetings. These tents of meetings (tabernacles) were very similar in design to that of the design of the Tabernacle built for God by Moses.
God met the people in a way they could understand.
They could understand the relevance of a special meeting place and the importance of designated priests serving the king. This was familiar to them.
God made it holy. He made it clear that *HE* was king . . . no human being lived in the Tent of Meeting. He made his presence known through the Cloud and the Fire.
God didn't require that the Israelites rise up to meet him at his level. He brought himself down to their level, something we see again and again and again. Jesus Christ was the ultimate "coming down to our level" love of God.
The golden calf interlude shows the negative side of pagan influence. It was very frustrating to me to read of those who gave up on God (who had just delivered them!) because, I, too, give up too soon.
The last chapters of Exodus goes through a seemingly endless repetition of instructions for how everything is to be built . . . again. Some of it IS repetition because Moses destroyed the original instructions in his anger against the building of the calf.
However, much of it is not repetition. It's more of a confirmation. Moses had the instructions and craftsmen designed the plans and built everything. Someone else went behind the builders and recorded exactly what was built and checked to see if it was according to the plans.
Repeatedly, the phrase, "just as God had commanded Moses" was used to complete the process.
Kind of a design confirmation. This made the last few chapters less tedious as I saw why they were used.
How does it apply to my life now?
Love one another.
Just as God commanded.