I was a bit under the weather earlier this weekend and spent most of Sunday sipping hot tea in front of the TV.
Weekend television, I found, is jamb-packed with commercials. And the same ones tend to reappear with annoying frequency. After repeated exposure to an ad for Ancestry.com I started to pay attention. I was intrigued and decided to take advantage of this weekend’s free trial offer.
When I discovered that the offer wasn’t quite as “free” as I would like, I didn’t sign up, after all. But, the teasing look I got into my mother’s side of the family made me curious and I’ve been tempted to sign up for the paid subscription and really dig into my family background.
In the current economic climate I have to weigh each new expense, so I’ve been trying to assess the actual value of the research, as opposed to just satisfying my curiosity.
We know there are groups who consider genealogical research to be their religious duty. Baptists aren’t among them because we believe that salvation is an individual’s responsibility and that once a person passes from this life it is too late to influence their eternal destiny.
So just what is the point of researching one’s family tree?
Studies have shown that a sense of family identity is important to a child’s development. Hearing, “In this family we don’t tell lies (or steal, hit our little sister with her Barbie, or whatever)”, reinforces the message and enhances the child’s sense of values. However, my sons are already adults, so I’m not sure I can justify the Ancestry.com expense with that particular argument.
Whether or not I eventually convince myself to sign on to this Internet site, it occurs to me that as a child of God I am still forming my spiritual identity.
While I may be ignorant of the details of my recent lineage I know without a shadow of a doubt that my family tree has its roots in the Garden of Eden with God’s creation of man.
If I want to know what we do and don’t do “in this family” I have only to open the Scriptures and read all about it. And this is no trial offer. My subscription is absolutely free.