The Swing of Things
June 14, 2012
Can you tell that I’m slowly working my way back into blogging? Just every few days, apparently. A little bit at a time. Maybe just one tiny animal picture might help us get back in the swing of things?
Just one little tiny one?
I have no jet lag excuses anymore. Last week I was getting tired at 8:30. Now I am just lazy.
I have a lot of reading I have to do for this Guatemala class, and I’m also supposed to be doing reading and research for my thesis. So, because I am always committed to being an excellent student/I couldn’t think of any more ways to put this off, I went to the library the other day to get some stuff done. You guys: It was the worst. There were about zero and a half people there, and it was so quiet and tragic and my soul was filled with gloom because it was so sunny and beautiful outside. Unbearable. I checked out a book and ran away. It makes me a super awful student, but I couldn’t take it. Maybe I’ll try again next week.
I just saw a spider on the wall, but then I got distracted and forgot about it, and now I don’t know where it’s gone. So now I feel like it’s probably crawling on me.
Target is becoming the worst. They quit carrying Diana’s and my favorite low-calorie tortilla chips and they are no longer stocking Hansen’s natural sodas. I may have to quit shopping there. OK, calm down. I regret saying that. It’s not true. Target, it’s not true. I’ll be back tomorrow.
Now it’s time for Israel Musings, brought to you by: Some Random Thing Denise Remembered About Her Trip.
There are lots of little biblical reminders around Israel. Although many Israelis are very secular — a large number of them don’t even believe in God — there is no separation of church (synagogue?) and state like we talk about in America. National parks contain passages of Scripture because you’re at the spot where David and Goliath fought or where Abraham dug a well. The whole land is infused with the Bible — it’s unavoidable.
One example of this is the mezuzah. In Deuteronomy 6, God tells the Israelites to love him with everything that they are, and to keep his commandments close to their hearts. He wants them to tie them as symbols on their hands and to write them on the doorframes of their houses and gates. Because of this commandment, many Jewish people have mezuzahs on the doorposts of their front doors — some even have them on every doorpost in their house. They are all over Israel — the place we stayed at in the Galilee had them on the doorposts to our cabins, and this is a picture of one at the entrance of Jaffa Gate, leading into the Old City.
A mezuzah is a little container that contains a small scroll of Scripture from Deuteronomy in it. It contains the Shema — the passage about loving God with all your heart, soul and strength. Oftentimes, when people pass through a doorway, they touch the mezuzah — a quick reminder to love God with everything. Whenever you pass through a doorway, you are reminded that your goal is to love God and to love your neighbor — the people you will encounter once you pass through that doorway. It’s a physical reminder of God’s commandments and the way he has asked us to serve him. Kind of neat.
OK, done, guys. Have a really good day — do it! Bye!