One of the things I miss the most from life before seminary is attending Wednesday morning bible study & then going to lunch with the grands. Yesterday, since we are in reading week, I was actually able to do that! Yippee! Bible study was very interesting, focused on 1 Corinthians 8. Brendan explained that Paul's main point is not that it's sinful to eat meat that's been sacrificed to pagan gods, but that we should be acting in a loving manner as part of a community. As such, we should not be persuading people to do something which they truly believe is sinful, even if we know that it's not. However, Brendan made it clear that this cannot be read too broadly, as meaning that we should never try to change people's minds & should never do anything to offend anyone. If we are educating people and they come to the conclusion that, say, eating sacrificed meat is not a sin, then that's all well & good. It has a lot to do with context as well as with education. Of course, there are plenty of applications in today's world. One example Brendan gave is that if we weren't ever to try & change anyone's mind on things, women couldn't be ordained. He talked some about biblical literalism and also about how Paul was obviously not against change or bucking the system, as evidenced by the very way he acted. My understanding of Paul (and my opinion on him) is changing as I study him more.
After bible study, my granddad asked if we wanted to have lunch at Young's. Since we were going to be closer to the plant than usual, I called J to invite her. And she was able to join us! She hasn't been leaving the plant for lunch at all these days, so I was surprised & delighted that she could come. We had a good time visiting with the grandies. She looked so great when she walked in. She just got her hair cut Tuesday & was wearing a perfectly-fitting pair of khakis with a v-neck red sweater my mom & Graham got her for Christmas. Wow, what a terrific outfit on her! I am lucky to have such a pretty wife. And she's even smart & kind to go along with it!
Once home, I cleaned house and spent time online registering for the MLP conference & researching hotels. All the ones close to Vanderbilt campus are either very pricey (Loew's Vanderbilt, for example) or sound kind of skanky. While I would love to stay at the Opryland, I don't think it's worth $400-something for two nights. So, I found a Holiday Inn in Brentwood that has a jacuzzi & seems clean & reasonably priced. I know where in Brentwood it is & know the neighborhood is decent. I am waiting to make absolutely certain we can go before making the reservations, though. I should know today. I also researched Japanese restaurants, but J got home at 7:30 & felt like it was too late to go out. Also, the boys begged to stay home. I am surprised Pie didn't want to go, since his brother had been dominating Pie's computer all afternoon & threatening to call their dad on the cell phone anytime Pie started to come tell me. I didn't know about this coercive behavior until this morning. Poor little guy. We'll have to watch that more carefully. Boot is becoming quite the bully with his brother. And threatening to call their dad on him? Their dad hasn't got control over anything that goes on in this house unless we are abusing or neglecting the kids, which would never be the case. Oy vey!
So, J hung out with me & played sous-chef while I cooked. I made pork chops, baked beans (with Dr. Pepper...J said they were the best she's ever had, but I thought they were too juicy), and steamed broccoli. The kids were pleasant company during the meal, although Pie didn't want to eat much. Boot loved the topping I made for the chops, while Pie found it abhorrent. Too much mustard & paprika, I'm guessing. He doesn't like anything remotely spicy.
After they went to bed, I tidied up the kitchen & followed J to bed. I had put on the 400-threadcount sheets she got me for Christmas. They're a very light peach & very soft. It was nice to snug in between them w/J, under our rose-covered quilt, & read.