I recently found my KJV Bible that I had in college. It was the one that my rural, Southern Baptist church gave me when I graduated from high school in 1994. I used it all through college, and I put a lot of stuff in it. Usually it was things that I wanted to keep, and looking through it the other night is like opening a time capsule in a way. I am such a different person now. Here is what I found.
A copy of St. Francis of
Some gift tags from my wedding presents ten years ago. It makes me wonder if I ever sent the thank you notes for them.
A card from a Presbyterian church that I attended when I studied for a semester in
A newspaper clipping of one of the times I made the Dean’s List (and I made the Dean’s List every semester—I am such a nerd).
One of my brother’s name cards that was in his high school graduation invitation from 1997.
A recipe for a breakfast casserole
Notes that I took during a Focus on the Family broadcast on September 28, 1995. From the looks of things, the broadcast was on how to be a good wife. A sample: always pay attention to the way you look: neat—never sloppy. And men resent women taking on masculine qualities. (Whatever. I am a totally different person now from the one who took those notes, and I know now not to believe everything that comes out of a FOTF broadcast.)
Ticket stub from an Amy Grant concert on August 18, 1995. My husband-to-be got two tickets: for him and a friend—but he didn’t know I would be free to go that evening, too. He went back and got me a ticket; and since he ordered one, he got me a better seat. I sat by myself in the better seat, too!
An offering envelope for the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for Foreign Missions.
Sermon notes I took about worship.
A letter from my “might have been” guy that I met the summer before my senior year of high school. He wrote me this letter the year before I got married, and it contains general news about his life. It doesn’t have a date or a postmark (for some odd reason), but I know it is addressed to the dorm I lived in during the 1995-96 school year.
Two fortunes from cookies that my husband and I opened on the morning after we were married. Mine said, “The current year will bring you much happiness.” My husband’s said, “Stop searching forever, happiness is just next to you.”
School pictures of my husband’s sister and her then boyfriend.
A bookmark. Oh, yeah, I used to keep them in the Bible, too.
Half of an index card.
Article clipping from the Women’s Missionary Union magazine Royal Service from February 1995. It is entitled, “Year of Prayer for the Muslim Peoples.” My mother clipped it out for me because I got a roommate in January 1995 (my first roommate left me mid-year perhaps because I snore) who was from
Newspaper clipping about me being inducted to the Kappa Nu Sigma honor society in spring 1997. As I have mentioned already, I am a nerd.
An offering envelope for the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for Home Missions. (Did I not give, or did I pick up extra envelopes?)
A post-it note with John 13:34-35 written on it. Also the words, “You are Loved!” are on it. I don’t remember who gave me this, but I know that I am loved.
A list of Bible verses that I included in a letter to my friend after the dorm caught fire. This occurred when I was studying in
Notes that I took after reading a book about the end times. It was fiction, but well before the Left Behind series. I took the book rather seriously, I guess. I had never heard anything in my life but dispensationalism when I was growing up. I was well into divinity school before I even knew about other eschatological views. I consider it a type of psychological abuse by my church to only have been exposed to dispensationalism as a child and teenager. Now I am firmly amillennial because I am reacting to my upbringing.
A notecard listing the things that I value:
2. faithfulness in all my relationships
3. obedience to God
4. trust in God
5. patience and wise judgment in my decision-making
And there you have it. Anyone looking through that Bible would learn things about me, but I can say that I am a much different person today. I do not carry around so much spiritual baggage anymore. I don’t even read the King James Version anymore. I have the TNIV instead, but I don’t have anything stashed away in that one.
It also makes me wonder who I’ll be in another twelve years.