During one of the sessions of the couple retreat we went on a few weeks ago, the speaker, in passing, asked everyone if they to remember the "Ebenezer stones"they had for their marriage - but he didn't stop to explain what that was (I think everyone else there had done a study with him that had brought it up or maybe the minister mentioned it in a sermon, since they all seemed to know exactly what he was talking about). Craig looked at me and I looked at him and we gave each other a look - the "we have to google that later" look.
But thinking about it, I did kinda-sorta remember learning about that concept, somewhere -and how it related to the "Come thou font" hymn - and not the Christmas story. But I wanted to revive those memories and this is what I found:
It comes from 1 Samuel 7:12-14, when Samuel set up a large stone as a monument so they would remember how God helped the Israelites subdue the Philistines. Ebenezer means - stone of help. I love that!
That jogged my memory of a women's bible study* I did a few years back about stones that the Israelites would put up as reminders of God's work in their lives. The 12 stones put up after they crossed the Jordan were the example in that case.** And we aren't talking little stone here, they guys were big. Think people sized rocks, like the smaller stonehenge rocks.
When God worked in the Israelites lives, they wanted to remember, not just for a few week, a few years or even their lifetime. They wanted that testimony to stick around for a long time so that when their kids' kids were running around they would notice those big rocks and ask "Hey, dad, what's the deal with that big rock?" And the parents would know the story, they would remember how God helped His people.
I want to be like that. God has worked in so many ways throughout my life, He has helped me and taught me and changed who I am. Thinking big, I want to remember His help, I want to be able to tell my kids about how He has impacted my life. But even before that, I want to remember those lessons myself.
At first, I couldn't really think of any Ebenezer stones I had, but slowly I have come up with a couple that I thought I could share with you...next time.
* That The World May Know. It's an excellent video bible study that shows places in the Bible and explains their significants. It would be really good for history/geography oriented people.
**Those were just called Standing stones so I might be mixing concepts. I know we have at least a few trained bible people that read this blog, any info for me? Is the Ebenezer a type of Standing stone, the same thing, or something totally unrelated that makes this whole post nonsensical?