Monday, January 18, 2010

Looking Back

One of the intents of this blog is to impart some genealogical information. Although I've done a lot of reading about the subject, I'm certainly no expert (yet). However, I'd like to pass along anything I find which may be of use to other researchers. In 2010, I also hope to be able to actually start more organized research about my own family tree. Why? Many people wonder why genealogists even bother to be concerned about a bunch of dead people, even if they are relatives. Some researchers say that knowing where they come from helps them to figure out where they are going. Other people wonder if spending so much time researching others' lives will cause them to miss out on creating their own 'story'. There is some validity to both viewpoints. I think a balance is needed between the two extremes. Genealogy (to me) is like a rear-view mirror: it can be useful to see what has gone on behind you and can help you to see things which may impact your present travels. However, as with an actual car's mirror, you can only spend a limited time looking back. So my priority is my living family members. Yet, the Bible claims that each individual is unique, a special creation from the hand of God and created for His glory and purposes. "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well...your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." (Psalm 139:13-16 -- New International Version) So I wouldn't call it a waste of time to find out about our relatives' and ancestors' lives. I love hearing other people's stories. To me, it brings glory to God as I see how He has preserved them through various adventures and trials. As the Psalm continues: "How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you." (Psalm 139:17-18 NIV)

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