Saturday, October 31, 2009

My Journey to My New Home

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24:59-65

Rebekah left her home with her parent's blessings. She and her maids mounted their camels and set out to find her prince. Eliezer led the way.

She turned back to the only home she had ever known and waved. "Good bye, Mother. Good bye, Father!" Rebekah lowered her arm and whispered, "Good bye, Laban. I shall miss you."

She faced forward and giggled. "I'm on my own adventure to a new land. I can't wait to meet my prince."

Being away from home felt exciting. Rebekah laughed and talked endlessly with her maids. They joked about Laban and tried to imagine what their new home would look like.

Day after day Rebekah stared at sand and sand and more sand. Occasionally Eliezer stopped by an oasis. The servants refilled water skins while Rebekah stretched her legs.

"Eliezer, tell me about the rest of our journey."

He bowed. "We'll climb the mountains you see in the distance. After several days journey we'll find my master's home."

"He truly lives a great distance away."

Eliezer smiled. "My master is a good man." He turned and walked away.

Rebekah turned to her maids. "He doesn't talk much."

They giggled together and walked back to the camels.

Climbing the mountains didn't seem as difficult as Rebekah imagined. Well warn roads through gentle passages proved easy for the camels to travel. The air smelled different. It was fresh and moist.

Rebekah took a deep breath to let scents of trees and flowers fill her lungs. "I'm going to like it here. I can't believe God has given me a land better than my dreams."

After traveling a few days in the mountain pass they reached a peak. Off in the distance she saw a great body of water. "Eliezer, what is that water?"

Eliezer slowed his camel. "That's the Salt Sea. We're near my master's house."

Rebekah's eyes widened. She pressed her hands together. "We are?"

"Yes." Eliezer urged his camel to move to the lead again.

Rebekah urged her camel to catch up. "Wait, Eliezer. Please. Tell me what does Isaac look like."

Her maids pressed their camels close to hear his answer.

"Well, he's strong. As you know, his father is old. Master Isaac chops and carries wood for the sacrifices."

Rebekah shook her head. "That's good, but what does he Look like?"

He stroked his beard and gazed ahead. "He has a keen sight. Why, he spots an animal before any other hunter I've know."

The maids giggled. Rebekah sighed. "Yes, yes. But what does he looook like?"

Eliezer cocked his head. "He's a great hunter. His father never waits long for meat. Why, I remember last year when Isaac found a bear. Best meat we ate all year."

The maids burst out laughing. Rebekah hushed them. "Dear Eliezer, is he tall, is his hair curly, tell me, what does he LOOK like."

He shrugged. "He looks like my Master."

Rebekah rolled her eyes and sighed. Suddenly she lifted her eyes and saw a man in the field walking toward them. "Who is that man, Eliezer?"

"Don't you recognize him? It is the man I've described to you. It is my master, Issac."

The maids leaped off their camels. "It's him! It's him!" They rushed to Rebekah and helped her down from her camel.

"Calm down girls. Quickly, give me my veil." They swirled the veil over her head and stepped back.

Rebekah stood tall while watching Isaac walk toward them. I'm home.

God cares about each of us. He has plans for our lives that may take us to far away places or keep us near or at our home. He may ask us to chop wood, work in a factory, sing in a choir, study in school or something else. What has he asked you to do? When you do your best in your job, how does your heart feel?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rebekah's Farewell

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24: 54-58
Last time we talked about Rebekah's family agreeing to let her journey with Eliezer to marry Isaac. First, you need to know that parties were held on the roof of a house. This served like a family room. Around the edge of the roof was a railing, (called a parapet), to keep people from falling. Eliezer would like tell what happened next.

The smartest thing for me to do was to stand back.

Such noise! Laban teased his sister. Rebekah's mother danced around the house laughing and singing. The servants who came with me huddled back in a corner to keep their feet from being stepped on.

Rebekah's mother suddenly pushed her hands against her face like she forgot something. "Eliezer, bring your men to the table. Come, hurry, the food will get cold."

We squished together around the table and waited for the blessing.

I couldn't believe all the food on the table. Huge platters of lambs meat, goat stew, tabouli and grape leaves, freshly baked breads. My men and I hadn't seen a meal so fitting of our master in a long time. They smacked their lips then shoved handfuls of food into their mouth. I'll have to speak with them later about grunting and gulping when seated at a fine table.

Laban grabbed his glass, leaped to his feet and laughed. "A toast to Isaac. May he find peace even though he'll be married to my sister."

We raised our glasses and shouted, "To Life, L'Chaim."

Bethuel squinted his eyes at his son and signaled for him to sit down.

After Laban slithered back into his seat, Bethuel grabbed his glass and stood. "May God bring blessing to my uncle Abraham and his family. May his son, Isaac, find true happiness with my beautiful Rebekah."

Everyone stood and held their glass high, "L'Chaim."

We danced and sang, and of course Laban had a story to tell. He climbed up on the parapet, "Listen everyone."

Rebekah nodded her head at her brother. She turned and sneaked down the stairs.

Laban bowed. "One day, years ago, as I set out to hunt, I found myself in an awkward situation. I wanted to impress my father by bringing home the finest kill, a wild boar.

After tracking for hours, I came upon a clearing. There the boar stood. My foot shifted and a twig snapped." Laban paused. He searched his audience as though looking for someone.

He sighed. "The boar broke into a run, straight for me. I froze."

For the first time that evening, his face grew serious. "Someone grabbed my tunic and yanked me out of the way. I looked up and saw Rebekah. She pushed me and signaled to follow her. Later, I asked her what she was doing away from the house. She said, 'I wanted to see what you were doing.' I may tease my sister a lot, but I'll never forget the day she saved me from the boar."

He turned his head toward the stairs and shouted loudly, "Rebekah, if there ever comes a time that you need my help. Maybe a son of yours will need protection, whatever it is, you can count on me."

With those words, he stepped down.

The next morning, I went to the family and asked permission to return to my master. Laban and Rebekah's mother asked if she could stay a few days before she went.

I couldn't bear to wait another minute. Abraham, my master is waiting, I have chores, my family is waiting; I can't wait. "Do not hinder me since the Lord has prospered my way; let me return to my master."

They looked at each other then said, "We'll call Rebekah and see what she says."

Rebekah came a moment later. She listened to her mother and Laban then looked at me. "I will go."

She twirled over to her mother. "Oh, Mama. This is what I've wanted. He will be my prince, I can feel it in my heart. I'm so happy. Please say I can go today, this morning."

Her mother put her hands on Rebekah's face. "My lovely daughter, I shall miss you."

Rebekah hugged her mother. She wiped and laughed. "Thank you, Mama."

She ran back to her room to pack and I prepared the camels.

Sometimes we need to say good bye to people. We have a new adventure in front of us. God knows we are ready to do something new. How does it feel?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

What Was Rebekah's Dad's Answer?

By Mary Vee

Today's puzzle is a cryptogram puzzle. To solve the puzzle you must figure out the code for the alphabet then put the correct letters in the blanks below. Some letters have been given to help you start. Scroll down to see last week's solution.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Rebekah's Dad and Brother Said "Yes"

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24:32-54
In our last story, Rebekah's brother, Laban, ran out to the city well and invited Eliezer, Abraham's servant, and the other servants to his home.

Laban led the camels to the stable, ducking each time they spat. He unloaded all the bundles, and set out plenty of straw and feed.

When he finished, Laban wiped his hands on his tunic and turned toward the house. "Follow me, my Father will be excited to hear your news."

Once inside, Laban walked over to the table. "My mother has prepared a meal." "You and your men may sit over here."

Eliezer cleared his throat. "Actually, I'd rather not eat until I've given my message."

Bethuel, Rebekah's father, nodded. "Don't worry, Laban. That's fine."

Eliezer bowed in respect. "I am Abraham's servant. The Lord has blessed my master with great wealth."

A servant yelled at a donkey in the front yard to get back to the stable. The donkey squawked and brayed. Eliezer leaned forward and spoke loudly about Abraham, his journey, and his prayer at the well.

He shook his head and put his hands on his face. "Do you know what happened? Before I finished speaking in my heart, there was Rebekah walking toward the well."

Laban rolled his eyes and mumbled, "She should have waited for him to stop speaking. But no, my sister always has to be first."

Eliezer sighed. "Now, tell me. What do you think?"

No one spoke.

Suddenly, Laban's stomach grumbled. I wish Father would make a decision. I'm starved. He leaned over and whispered, "Seems like a good idea."

"I don't know if this is good or bad, but I think the Lord is clearly speaking to us." Bethuel stroke his beard.

A moment later he nodded and stood. "You may take Rebekah to be your master's son's wife as the Lord has spoken."

Eliezer fell to the ground and worshiped the Lord. "Thank you, O God of my master, Abraham."

"Wait. I have gifts." He ran to one of his bags and jammed his arm deep inside. "Yes, here it is." Eliezer unpacked silver and gold jewelry and beautiful clothing. "These are for your daughter."

Before Bethuel called, Rebekah ran out to the living room. "You called, Father?"

He shook his head. "I would have called if you would have given me the chance. Very well, you may have your gifts."

Eliezer set his bag on the floor and handed her the jewelry and clothing.

She bowed graciously. "Thank you." Rebekah brushed the soft material against her cheek and laughed. "What beautiful gifts." She twirled around the living room, holding each new treasure close to her.

Laban rolled his eyes. "Girls."

Eliezer dug into his bag and unpacked precious gifts for Laban and their mother.

Tears came to her eyes. "Oh, Betheul. Look."

He nodded. "Very nice."

Laban sneaked behind his sister and tickled her. She spun around to face him. At that moment he saw a sparkle in her eyes. "I'm happy for you, Sis."

Can you count how many pieces of the story about Rebekah God clearly planned? Hmmm..don't forget Eliezer's prayer asking God to send the right girl to say the right thing, and the comment button to say what else God did.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pesky Brothers

By Mary Vee

Last time we talked about Eliezer giving Rebekah a gold ring and gold bracelets. She ran home to show her family the wonderful gifts.

Laban, Rebekah's brother, wiped his forehead. "What a hot day to split wood." He set the freshly cut log on the wood pile. As he reached for another chunk of wood, he noticed his sister running toward the house. He looked closer and saw her friends weren't with her. There must be something wrong. His ax fell from his hand, just missing his foot. "Rebekah!"

"Laban, Laban, look what I have!" Rebekah waved her wrist in front of his face.

"Wait just a minute. Who gave you these bracelets and the ring? Who's this person?" Laban rolled up his sleeves. "I'll teach this stranger to fool my sister. Where is he?"

Laban paced a few steps, turned and glared at his sister. "Why do you listen to strangers? He could be a thief."

He pushed her off the path. "Step aside. I'll take care of him."

Rebekah tried to slow her breathing. She shook her head and laughed. "You don't understand. No one was mean to me."

Laban stomped up the path. "Yeah, sure. Is he at the well?"

"Wait!" Rebekah pulled her skirt tight around her feet and ran after her brother. "You must listen." She took two more breaths. "Yes, there's a man at the well. He's the servant of Grandfather's brother."

Laban stopped. He studied her eyes to decide if she was telling the truth. "Abram's servant is out at the well?"

"Yes! But his servant called him Abraham. He must have changed his name."

"And you left him out there? Rebekah what were you thinking?" He shook his finger at her. "You can't leave servants who probably have important messages from family members out at the well. Do I have to do everything myself?"

He ran out to the well. There he found a finely dressed servant standing by ten magnificent camels. Nine servants stood humbly nearby. Ooooo, Rebekah is going to be in so much trouble when Dad and Mom find out she left these people at the well.

He swallowed and took a few steps near the servant. "I understand you met my sister."

The servant nodded.

"Please forgive us, for you are blessed of the Lord. Please, come to our home. Our house is prepared for you."

Laban turned to lead the way to the house. "Come, my parents will want to hear all your news about Abraham."

Eliezer commanded the servants and camels to follow. "Very good. I have important news to tell them."

Looks like Laban cared about his sister after all. He showed, in his brotherly way, that he didn't want her to get hurt. I have a brother like that. God brings many different people in our lives who care about us. Think about the people in your life. Yup, even the ones who are pesky. Can you find at least one time when someone showed they cared about you? Did you just giggle?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Can Rebekah Find Her Prince? Crossword Puzzle

By Mary Vee

FIND ANSWERS TO THIS WEEK'S PUZZLE IN GENESIS 24. Scroll Down to find last weeks answer

1. Rebekah's home
5. Was Eliezer allowed to take Isaac on the trip?
6. Relationship between Rebekah's grandfather and Eliezer's master
7. What Eliezer touched to make his promise
9. Animals Eliezer took to Rebekah's family
11. Bethuel was Rachel's
13 What Rebekah carried
14. Abraham's son

2. Number of camels Eliezer took
3. Eliezer's master
4. One of the gifts given to Rebekah
8. Eliezer's gifts were made of
9. people from which Eliezer should not find a wife for Abraham's son
10. direction Eliezer travelled
12. Rebekah poured water into

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Rebekah Went to Fetch Water and Found Gold

By Mary Vee

Rebekah's two friends stood at the end of the path outside Rebekah's house. Their water jugs wabbled on their shoulders .

"Rebekah. Ready to go to the well?"

"Uh huh."

"She's dancing again, Hava."

"Dancing with a water jug, Deborah. That girl needs a husband."

"And we don't?"

"Of course we do."

Rebekah danced in between her friends and linked arms. "Come now, you know I'll settle for nothing less than a prince."

The three friends burst out laughing.

They joked and laughed all the way along the path leading out of the city.

Rebekah pulled her arms free from her friends and sprinted ahead a few steps. "Race you there."

The wind blew through her hair. She twirled around once than slowed to a walk. "The air smells good. I could stay out here all day."

As she neared the well, she noticed a traveler with several camels resting. "Hmmm, I wonder what brings him to our city. I wonder where he's been, where he's going, what he's seen. Oh, how I wish I could travel and see other places."

She went down to the well, filled her pitcher and came up. Suddenly she noticed the servant running to meet her. He must need help.

The traveler stopped a few steps from her. "Please, please, may I have a little drink of water from your pitcher?"

Rebekah looked at his his face. Poor man, he looks so thirsty. "Yes, of course, drink, my lord." She quickly let her pitcher down and gave him a drink.

He smiled and drank some more. "Thank you. This water is good. You're very kind."

Rebekah raised her pitcher to her shoulder. His camels must be as thirsty as he is, poor things. "I'd be happy to draw water for your camels, if you wish."

Rebekah didn't give him a chance to respond. She ran over to the trough and emptied her pitcher. Those poor creatures, they've drank the water I just poured, already. She ran back to the well to draw water again and again until the camels stopped dinking.

She wiped sweat off her face with her sleeve. Rebekah laughed when the camels plopped down to rest. "That's much better."

Rebekah sat down under the tree to rest. She watched the traveler reach into a satchel. He dug around for a minute then pulled out a ring and two bracelets. Oh, dear, this is a wealthy traveler. Who have I met this day?

The traveler gently walked near her. "This is a gift for you."

Rebekah could hardly breathe. "For me, my lord?"

The traveler smiled. "You have been so kind to me. Whose daughter are you? Tell me, please, is there room in your father's house for us to stay for the night?"

Rebekah looked back at her friends who were filling their pitchers then back at the traveler. "My father is Bethuel. His parents are Milcah and Nahor. We have both straw and feed enough for your camels and a room for you to rest."

The traveler bowed his head and worshipped the Lord. "Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who has led me to the house of my master's brethren."

Rebekah's mouth fell open. "You are the servant of Grandpa's brother, Abraham? Oh, wait 'til my family hears about this. Come on. I can't wait to tell my family."

Rebekah ran ahead as fast as she could without spilling water from her pitcher.

Sometimes when we do something nice for someone, we find out our good deed has helped more than we realized. Sometimes when we do a good deed we receive a reward we can touch. But everytime we do a good deed, God will give us a sparkly, joyful feeling inside that makes us smile, or jump, or dance. Do a kind deed and see!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Rebekah's Wish for a Prince

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24:15
Last time we left Eliezer with his master's camels and servants near a well. He found the city of Nahor as Abraham asked him to do. While he settled down to rest and began a prayer to God asking for help to find the right wife for Isaac, Rebekah finished her mending in her home at the nearby city.

Rebekah shook the skirt she mended and tipped her head. "Good, can't see the hole." She shoved the needle and thread back in the sewing box.

"Rebekah, help me with this goat stew," her mother called. "After we prepare the meat and vegetables, it can cook while you get the water."

Rebekah grabbed a knife and some vegetables and found a clean spot on the counter to work. "Mother, do you think I'll ever find the perfect husband?"

Her mother wiped her hands on her apron. "You could marry Lavi the spice merchant."

Rebekah laughed. "Sure, and bring him his cane every morning. Mother, he's too old."

"True, but you'd never go hungry marrying a wealthy man like him."

Rebekah sighed. "I know, but isn't there more to life than being wealthy?"

"You don't complain about your life here." Her mother sliced a few pieces of meat and dropped them in the pot. "Your father has given you much."

"He has given me a good life here." Rebekah gazed out the window at her father, Bethuel, and laughed. "He's chasing that silly brother of mine. Laban probably hid his favorite tool again."

Rebekah chopped the last piece of vegetable. "Sometimes I wonder, what would it be like to go on a long journey and see someplace new? Maybe my husband is in a far off country waiting for me. Maybe he's an heir to a great kingdom. What if he's part of a great plan that would bring peace to everyone?"

Rebekah twirled around and gave her mother a hug. "Do you think it's possible?"

Her mother dropped the last piece of meat into the pot and laughed. "You, my daughter, are so beautiful. How is it that you have such wild dreams?"

"Oh, I don't know. I really do love being near my family." Rebekah twirled over to the window and leaned on the edge. "It's just--I feel something in my heart. I want to go on an adventure out there, somewhere, to meet my special prince."

"Until that day should ever come, bring me the vegetables for the pot. And hurry, I see your friends coming up the road. You need to grab your water jug and get going to the well."

Rebekah chuckled and dropped the vegetables into the pot. She hummed a tune as she twirled over to the water jug. She scooped it up and danced with it out the door. "Good bye, Mother. I love you."

Sometimes God gives us wishes to help us want to do what is in His plan. One day I saw a movie about being a missionary in Mexico. Suddenly I wanted to go more than I wanted to do anything else. My father said, "No." I didn't have any money to pay for the trip. My friends prayed and prayed. They prayed every day. God supplied the money. My friends kept praying with me for God to change my dad's heart. One day my dad said I could go. When I was in Mexico I handed a paper with a Bible story written on it to a man in the city. He stopped, read the story, and said "Thank You." I never saw the man again. Sometimes I wonder if he ever heard anything else about God.

Has God given you a wish? Press the comment button and tell me.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Abraham Scramble Game

By Mary Vee

Directions: Unscramble each of the clue words. Copy the letters in the numbered cells to the cells at the bottom with the same number to see the secret message. SCROLL DOWN FOR ANSWER TO LAST WEEK'S OLD TESTAMENT MAZE

Answer key to Last Week's Old Testament Maze

Saturday, October 10, 2009

God Likes to Trust us with Big Jobs

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24:10-15
Eliezer looked to the north. "I have a long journey. My master, Abraham, made me promise I would go to the city of Nahor to find a wife for his son, Isaac. He actually trusted me to do this great task!"

He looked at the ten camels and the servants traveling with him. "He trusted me with his best."

Eliezer stuffed the paper listing all his master's possessions in the pouch hung around his neck. "Better keep this safe. I'll need to show this as proof when I arrive in Nahor."

He traveled through mountains, streams, valleys, and deserts for many days. For four hundred miles he and the servants followed Abraham's instructions.

One evening, around supper time, Eliezer came to a well outside the city of Nahor.

"We're here! At last, we're here." He herded the camels by the well and made them kneel. "We will wait to drink," Eliezer commanded.

He knew women from the city went to the well to get water for their families in the evening. Eliezer didn't want to be in the way. He also knew people from the city took their water from the well before travelers could draw water. He stayed back to not be in the way.

Soon he saw a group of women in the distance. Eliezer felt nervous. "They're coming for water."

He took a deep breath. "How will I know which woman is the right one for Isaac?

He stroked his beard. "I know, I shall pray to my master's God."

He knelt near the camels. "O Lord God of my master Abraham, please give me success this day, and show kindness to my master Abraham. Here I stand by the well. The women from the city are coming to draw water. Let it be, that the young woman to whom I say, 'Please let me have a drink,' and she then says 'Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink'-let her be the one You have chosen for Your servant Isaac."

Eliezer looked up at the beautiful blue sky. "And, Lord, let me know by all of this that you have shown kindness to my master."

Before Eliezer finished speaking, Rebekah came to the well with a pitcher on her shoulder.

God loves us so much that He trusts us with big jobs, shows us the way to do the job, and helps us to be successful. Can you think of a time God gave you a big job to do? What happened?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Eliezer, Trusted Servant of Abraham

By Mary Vee

Genesis 24:1-9
Abraham groaned when the sun rose one morning. His arms ached. His legs ached. He rubbed his eyes and looked around his tent for his cane. Everything looked blurry.

Eliezer opened the tent flap and stepped inside. "I see you're awake already. I brought you some food and drink. Do you want to eat in here or out at the table?"

Abraham rubbed his back. "I'll eat out there. Maybe the fresh air and sunshine will soothe my bones."

"Very well. Here's your cane. Do you need help?"

"No, my friend." Abraham chuckled then coughed twice. "I may be older than 137 years, but I think I can find my way out of this tent."

Abraham yawned and pushed himself up with his cane. "Sure wish my Sarah was here. She'd laugh and call me 'old man'. She sure knew how to keep me moving."

He hobbled out the tent and over to the table.

Abraham leaned against the edge of the table and motioned for Eliezer to come closer. "Eliezer, Isaac is old enough to have a wife. He's almost 40 years old. I don't want him to take a wife from this land. The women here do not worship the true God."

Eliezer nodded. "I understand. But what then would you have me do?"

Abraham gazed up at the morning sunrise. Golden sun rays reached far to the east. "You have been my most trusted servant for years. Please, put your hand under my thigh and promise me in the name of the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of the earth that you will go to my country and to my family, and find a wife for my son Isaac."

"You want me to travel all the way to Mesopotamia? What if the woman I find will not come with me back here? I suppose I could get Isaac and take him back to Mesopotamia to find a wife."

Abraham shook his head. "Oh, no, no, don't do that. Isaac must not go back there. The Lord God of heaven clearly told me this is the land He wanted us to have. Isaac must stay here."

Abraham gazed into his servants eyes. "Don't worry. God will send His angel before you. You will find the right girl. And, if she isn't willing to come here and marry Isaac, then you will be free from this promise. You must not take Isaac back there."

Eliezer bowed in respect. He placed his hand under his master's thigh and promised to do everything Abraham asked.

Abraham clapped his hands together. "Good. Now I can eat my meal."

Abraham knew he could trust his servant Eliezer to do what he promised. We also know that we can trust God to do all that He promises. But here is the question. Will you be a trusted servant for God like Eliezer was for Abraham?

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Old Testament Book Maze

By Mary Vee

Follow the maze. Choose the path that puts the Old Testament books in order. Only the first letter of each book is given. If a book has first and second in the name like I Samuel and II Samuel then there will be a letter for each book, one for first and one for second. The answer will be published next week.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Abraham Lost His Best Friend

By Mary Vee

Genesis 23
Abraham's best friend on earth had to be Sarah, his wife. She lived with him longer than anyone else he knew. She laughed with him when they found out they would have a baby, she hiked with him through the promised land, she did whatever she could to make him happy.

Sarah was 127 years old when she died.

Abraham cried. He sat down beside her and thought of all the things they did together throughout the years. Tears poured down his cheeks.

His servant offered him food and drink, but he didn't want anything. He missed his Sarah.

Men who had lived in the land heard about Sarah's death. They came to visit Abraham. The men walked close to Abraham and waited for him to notice them.

Abraham lifted his head and looked at them. His eyes were red. Tears clung to his face. He sobbed.

One man said, "Abraham, you are a mighty prince among us. In all the years you have lived here, we have come to know and trust you. Please, accept our gift. Take any of our best pieces of land to bury Sarah."

All the other men nodded in agreement.

Abraham's servant helped him stand. His back hurt, his knees hurt, and he felt very tired. He took a sleeve and wiped his face. "Thank you for your kindness. Please let me have the cave of Machpelah which is at the end of Ephron's field. Tell me the full price. I will pay for the property."

Ephron stepped forward. "No, my lord, please, you must let me give you the field and the cave. Before all these witnesses I say I am giving you the land. You owe me nothing. Please accept my gift."

Abraham was a wealthy man. He had plenty of money to pay for the land. He realized Ephron wanted to give the land out of respect and honor. Ephron was not rich. To take the gift from him would be wrong. Also, Abraham didn't want any of the men from that land to say they were the ones who made Abraham rich. He knew God gave him all that he owned.

Ephron looked at Abraham's eyes. "You really want to pay for the land, don't you? Well, if you must know, the land is worth 400 shekels of silver."

Abraham took out his money. He weighed the silver until he had the right amount and gave it to Ephron. "Thank you for letting me buy the cave and the field."

Before all the witnesses, Ephron gave the paper to Abraham saying he owned the field and cave at Machpelah.

Abraham and his servants carried his best friend, and wife, Sarah, to the cave and buried her.

Even though he thought of her, and oftentimes heard her voice in his memory, he knew in his heart that she was with God and that he would see her again someday.

Sometimes we lose our friends, they move away, or they leave in other ways. It's OK to cry when they leave. The Bible tells us Jesus cried, do you remember when and why? But after we cry for a while, we need to keep doing the things God wants us to do. Don't forget your friends. Keep caring about them while you do the things God has for you to do.