I was reminded of a sweet memory as we talked in our small group last night (thanks Chrissy). For those of you who grew up in church, you'll remember the old flannel graphs--Biblical images with flannel backing used to teach kids in Sunday School classes. I remember Sunday after Sunday watching my teachers relay the stories of the Old Testament to me through this (unusual) visual aid. They also used teaching pictures and other means of illustration to keep my very active young mind focused on the story.
Last night our discussion revolved around how much those teachings (for those of us who grew up in church) have effected our understanding of the Biblical narratives. For instance, we all recalled a picture from children's Bibles that showed the slippery serpent from the Garden of Eden. He was portrayed dangling from the Tree that Adam and Eve were forbidden to eat from. So, for most of us, the word "serpent" and those pictures have had an impact on how we remembered the stories. But the Bible is clear that the serpent didn't slither on the ground at that point and never indicated that he was hanging from that particular tree. It's just something someone interpreted somewhere along the way.
My point? That's why it is so important that we pick up the Bible--frequently--and read these stories for ourselves. Don't take my word for it...nor anyone else's for that matter. Let the Bible teach you what God wants you to know about Himself, His plan for humanity, and His great love for you. Get it straight from the mind of God.
I hope you all are reading the Word...whether its through our 90 day challenge or just your personal time with God every day. Regardless, you've got to put the Scriptures in your life if they are ever going to have an impact. Then, maybe, when you're done, you can use that knowledge to start updating some of those old flannel graphs that are still hanging around.