The ability to tell stories is a great talent. My Daddy was very good at that. We all enjoyed the stories from his own childhood and he was just as good at passing down stories he heard from other family members. His great-grandchildren remember the stories he told them, but we wrote too few of them down. I have a few pages in his own handwriting, and a couple of hours of tapes he made several years ago.
One of the tapes is one my Mom set up while Dad and two of his siblings were chatting after dinner. She was the only one aware that the tape was going, and there is at least an hour of give and take, back and forth, as one memory stirred another and their childhood was recalled. Aunt Ocie recalled the train trip from eastern Arkansas to western Oklahoma. My grandfather’s niece (his same age) and her family accompanied them to Beckham county. Just a few years later, after my father was born, they moved by wagon to Jackson county, farming there for their remaining years. Many such stories were recalled for the duration of that tape.
The same events were recounted from differing viewpoints. One story had to do with how Aunt Grace received the scar across her forehead. I won’t tell it here, for someone might try it – it was an intriguing experiment! To hear it from her point of view, then a sibling’s, who watched it happen, almost sounding as two separate events. Throw in a third’s seeing the results when they arrived home and you have a well-rounded description. All three are accurate.
I’m reminded as such when reading the Bible. Quite often the same event is recounted by one or more, with the slightest of changes. Detractors jump upon that and declare the recounting invalid. I suggest it is no more invalid than my aunts and uncles discussing their childhood.
I also believe that the Queen of Sheba’s comment recorded both in 1 Kings 10:7 and 2 Chronicles 9:6 applies to much more than Solomon and his kingdom, half was not told. Daniel gave us such a clue.
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. (Daniel 12:4 KJV)
As did John.
And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not. (Revelation 10:4 KJV)
Can we know them? Nope. Daniel asked that same question.
And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. (Daniel 12:8-9 KJV)
I think that is one of the most difficult things to accept in faith, that we are not given all the answers. Mankind continues to seek them. The Large Hadron Collider, the most costly scientific experiment in history, seeks such answers, just as we do in our daily life. How did the universe begin?
I think of Rebekah’s question to the Lord: … and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the LORD. (Genesis 25:22 KJV)
We often ask the same question. Perhaps we, too, need to inquire of the Lord for our answer, fainting not, even if the only answer we get is “Wait.”
I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD. (Psalms 27:13-14 KJV)