Friday, September 22, 2017

The Vision (9/22/17): The Water That Christ Gives

Note: Devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on John 4:1-15.
But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life (John 4:14).
Here we are told what Christ offers to thirsty men. He offers them the living water that satisfies and wells up like a spring within a man to eternal life.
Calvin notes that the Lord does not invite “those who have drunk enough, but the thirsty, not those who are satisfied but the hungry, to eat and drink.” He adds: “For we are like a dry and barren soil; for there is no sap or vigor in us, until the Lord water us by his Spirit.”
They say one can live three weeks without food but only three days without water. A couple of years ago I went with my three oldest children for a couple days of hiking and camping on the Appalachian Trail. We hiked a stretch parallel to the Skyline Drive with which I was not very familiar. Most importantly, I did not know where the watering holes were. We had to make camp one evening with very little water and ran the risk of dehydration. How wonderful it was to hike the next morning a few miles down the trail to discover a spot where there was a flowing creek and pools of water from which to drink!
How needful is water? Take it away and you find out quickly how important it is. Take it away and a man will dwindle and die. Give it to him and he will live and flourish. That is what Christ is to a man’s spiritual life. This is what Jesus is saying here and what he will say later in John 6:35 when he says, “and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”
Does this mean that Christ’s disciples never have hardship? No. Christ perfectly satisfies our ultimate thirst in salvation, even if the believer must sometimes pass through periods of dryness. So, in this sense, Calvin writes:
Thus believers thirst, and keenly thirst, throughout their whole life; and yet they have abundance of quickening moisture; for however small may have been the measure of grace which they have received, it gives them perpetual vigor, so that they are never entirely dry.”
Isaiah 55:1: “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat….”

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

Monday, September 18, 2017

WM # 80: Review: Douglas Wilson and James R. White Debate the Text of the NT

I have posted Word Magazine # 80: Review: Douglas Wilson and James R. White Debate the Text of the NT (listen here). In this episode I read through a draft of a review article giving some analysis of the the recently (summer 2017) published booklet, Debating the Text of the Word of God: Douglas Wilson vs. James R. White (Simposio, 2017).

Here is the opening of my review:

This booklet is a brief written debate between Presbyterian theologian Douglas Wilson, perhaps best known most recently for distancing himself from the “federal vision” theology he once championed, and Reformed Baptist apologist James R. White. The debate ostensibly addresses the question, “In the context of the Christian faith, has God best preserved His written word in the New Testament in the Textus Receptus or in the modern Nestle-Aland/UBS Text Platform?

The debate structure consists of five parts: (1) opening statements; (2) rebuttals; (3) cross-examinations (each participant poses seven questions to the other, who replies); (4) closing statements; and (5) questions and answers (with some questions posed to both participants and others to each individually). In addition to the written debate, the publisher also has available an audio version.

In this debate, Wilson is meant to defend the TR and White the NA/UBS. The exchange becomes somewhat confused, however, by the fact that Wilson puts forward a unique defense of the TR based on his idiosyncratic understanding of the text of the NT from a “canonical” perspective, a view which White appears, perhaps justifiably, only flounderingly to grasp or critique, as he falls back on some stock arguments in favor of the modern critical text. Though there are significant differences between the two positions, in the end both advocate a version of a “reconstructionist” perspective on the text of the NT.

And here is my concluding analysis:

This written debate on the text of the NT is brief but dense in content.  In the end, I agree with Wilson that the approach of both presenters is “structurally identical.” They both present a “reconstruction” view of the text of the NT, as opposed to a classical Protestant, confessional view of the providential preservation of Scripture, as expressed in chapter one, paragraph eight of the Westminster Confession (and the Second London Baptist Confession). Both believe that the text of the NT, at present, can only be closely approximated but it remains “unsettled.” Wilson presents a unique “canonical” view of the text, suggesting the best current approximation of the true text is found in Stephanus’ 1550 edition of the TR. White is taken aback by Wilson’s unique approach and struggles properly to understand his perspective. For White the closest text to the autograph is found in the current edition of the modern critical text (NA 28/UBS5), which he doggedly defends. The problem, again, is that neither view articulates the traditional Protestant perspective on the text of Scripture and its preservation as presented in the confession.


Friday, September 15, 2017

The Vision (9/15/17): God is True

Note: This devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on John 3:31-36.
He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true (John 3:33).
The verb here for “setting the seal” refers to a form of authentication meant to verify the genuineness of something. It is used, for example, to refer to the setting a seal on a letter, which often involved pressing a distinctive mark on wax. The NKJV renders this verse: “He who has received His testimony has certified that God is true.”
So, John says no one receives this testimony merely from natural or earthly witnesses, but the one who receives this testimony is given an overwhelming confirmation or authentication from above. He realizes that the witness to Jesus as the Messiah is true, no matter the objections lodged against it. One thinks of Paul’s words in Romans 3:4, “let God be true, but every man a liar.”
This verse tells us something about how revelation—especially for us in this age, inscripturated revelation—is received by God’s people. Just as they trust in Christ by faith, they also trust in his Word by faith. There are many apologists who spend much time defending the truthfulness of God’s word, often by the use of rational evidences. I am not saying there is no place for that. It can be useful in both evangelism and discipleship, if God is pleased to use it as an instrument. On the other hand, trust in the truthfulness of God’s Word is something that will be most readily accepted by those who are converted with no need for apologetics at all.
Think of an infant being fed by a bottle or nursing at his mother’s breast. Do you really need to stand there and convince the infant of the value of milk? “Now baby, let me reason with you. You really need to drink this milk. I know you may be unsure about it, but I can demonstrate to you that it is wholesome and it will help you grow and develop, and I’m sure that once you understand my presentation on milk you will just love it.” No, such cajoling is unnecessary. A born-again believer hungers for the Word of God and craves its truthfulness, just as an infant desires and is satisfied by milk. He has “set to his seal that God is true.”

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

Friday, September 08, 2017

The Vision (9/8/17): He must increase

Image: John the Baptist, detail, Isenheim Altarpiece.

Note: This devotion taken from the conclusion to last Sunday's sermon on John 3:22-30.

He must increase, but I must decrease (John 3:30).

Brethren, the spiritual application for us is simple: John the Baptist has provided for us here a model for the mindset that should govern every born-again believer. We should make much of Christ and little of ourselves.

I wonder how many of our personal problems would be solved if we applied John’s attitude to ourselves. How many problems would be solved if we made much of Christ and little of ourselves? In our homes and families? In our workplaces? In our church? In our communities?

One of the persons who immediately came to mind when I considered examples of a John the Baptist type spirit was the great Reformer John Calvin. I’ve said before that one of the things I admire about John Calvin is that when he died he left orders to be buried in a pauper’s grave with no marker, for he feared people would make more over him than they would of Christ.

I thought of that when we were in Krakow last month and our walking tour guide told us there were 30 statues and memorials to John Paul II in the city and over 1000 in the country. What a contrast!

In the biography of Calvin which I read while on that trip, the author noted the conflicts the Geneva Reformer had with a heretic named Servetus. This man would rail against Calvin and call him all manner of vile names, to which Calvin responded that all his defamations were like “the barking of a dog at a pile of manure” (H. J. Selderhuis, John Calvin, 33).

That is a John the Baptist type of spirit. I am nothing. Christ is everything. He must increase. I must decrease. May we have that same spirit.

In his commentary on John 3:30, Calvin observes: “and this zeal of John all Pastors of the church [we might justly add: and all believers within the church] ought to imitate by stooping with the head and shoulders to elevate Christ.”

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

Friday, September 01, 2017

The Vision (9.1.17): Condemned by Unbelief

Note: Devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on John 3:18-21.

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God (John 3:18).

In this verse John contrasts the regenerate man with the unregenerate man. The unregenerate man is self-condemned due to his unbelief.

The thought here flows from v. 17 wherein Jesus said that God the Father did not send the Son to condemn the world but that the world through him might be saved.

John 3:18 begins with a positive statement: The one who believes in the Son is not condemned (v. 18a).

This reminds us of the necessity of faith (cf. v. 16). It also reminds us of the instrumentality of faith. This is what we mean when we talk about justification by faith. Men are not save because of their faith but through the means (instrumentality) of their faith. This distinction is crucial. This is what Paul will speak of when he points to the example of Abraham in Romans 4:1-5. No man is saved apart from faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The contrast to this is the person who does not believe in Christ, the person who is enslaved in the blindness of his unbelief. That person stands under condemnation, but this condemnation is not something brought upon the unbeliever by Christ. It is something that the unbeliever has brought upon himself. He is self-condemned (read v. 18b).

Has he failed to uphold some amorphous and vague conception of God? Has he failed to be a mere theist? No, he has not believed “in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” The “name” refers to the fundamental identity of the triune God.

Think of Jacob wrestling with God’s messenger through the night and asking God through him: “Tell me, I pray thee, thy name” (Gen 32:29). Jacob calls the place Peniel, which means “the face of God” “for” he said “I have seen God face to face and my life has been preserved” (v. 30).

Think of Moses at the burning bush in Exodus 3 asking for God to reveal his name and God saying, “I AM THAT I AM” (v. 14).

The unbeliever does not believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God. What is his name? He is the Lord Jesus Christ. This is what Paul meant when he wrote, “Wherefore God hath given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow … and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).

The unregenerate man does not believe that Jesus is Lord. Either he does not confess it aloud, or he confesses it but does not truly mean it. A parrot can be trained to utter various words and phrases but that does not mean he believes or even understands what he says.

See also the ending of this chapter: “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (3:36).  Is there any clearer rejection of universalism that this? And notice that the distinguishing factor between having life and not having life is faith, belief, fundamental trust in Christ alone.

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

Book Note: Sam Harris on Free Will

I read Sam Harris’ little book Free Will (Free Press, 2012) just before our Ukraine trip and have been meaning to post some thoughts on it.

The outspoken atheist Harris argues that free will is an illusion. He even says, “The illusion of free will is itself an illusion” (p. 64). Harris essentially upholds biological determinism. Everything you will do, say, or think is biologically destined. You only think you have a choice.

So, Harris suggests:

Take a moment to think about the context in which your next decision will occur: You did not pick your parents or the time and place of your birth. You didn’t choose your gender or most of your life experiences. You had no control whatsoever over your genome or the development of your brain. And now your brain is making choice on the basis of preferences and beliefs that have been hammered into it over a lifetime—by your genes, your physical development since the moment you were conceived, and the interactions you have had with other people, events and ideas. Where is the freedom in this? Yes, you are free to do what you want even now. But where do your desires comes from? (p. 41).

The human sense of free will imposes ethics and tricks you into thinking you have freedom, but this is not, in fact, the case. For Harris it is all a matter of “luck.” He was lucky, while criminals and psychopaths are simply profoundly unlucky. Even laziness, like diligence, is “a neurological disorder” (p. 62). Man is a “biochemical puppet” (p. 47).

Again, Harris is an atheistic determinist. Though he makes an effort to argue for “moral responsibility” despite the fact that humans are little more than “neuronal weather patterns”, it does not come off as very convincing (p. 48).

As a Calvinist I can appreciate a lot about Harris' skepticism toward the conventional views of free will. What’s the difference, however, between Harris’ rejection of free will and, say, that articulated by RB pastor Walt Chantry in his tract The Myth of Free Will? Chantry says man’s will is bound by sin, rooting man’s path and his hope in the decree of God. Harris takes man back to his biology but does not tell us where the biology comes from. Despite the brave face, for Harris life is nihilism, nothingness, no meaning, no purpose. I find (choose?) chapter 9 of the 2LBCF to be a more satisfying account of things.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Marking 20 Years of Friendship

I took this photo Sunday after church of me with my friend Bonnie Beach. It was twenty years ago this summer that I first met Bonnie Beach. We worked together for 13 of those years. She taught my oldest daughter Hannah in preschool and later became my ministry assistant when I served an SBC church in Charlottesville. She now does the bulletin each week at CRBC as part of her member duties. Bonnie has been a blessing to me and my family in many ways (not the least of which is that she takes care of our dog when we're out of town!). She is a kind and generous friend with a servant's heart who has been like a sister to me. We also greatly appreciate her husband John, a graduate, as he tells it, of O.I.C. and the school of hard knocks, who's always been ready to lend me a hand when I've needed his expert counsel for home projects. I am blessed and thankful.


Friday, August 25, 2017

The Vision (8.25.17): For God so Loved

Image: Baptism service, Kostopil, Ukraine (8.13.17)

Note: Devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on John 3:16-17.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

Jesus begins, “For God so loved….”

God. This is the God of the Bible. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The jealous God who will not yield his glory to another. The God who in the beginning made the heaven and the earth. This is not some amorphous God, some life force. This is Jehovah.

So. This is the adverb houto. I think there is a natural tendency to take the English word in the sense of “so much” or “to such a great degree.” We get the picture of love overflowing from God’s heart. But the word can also mean, “in such a manner” or “in such a way.”

Loved. The verb here is agapaomai, from the noun agape. This is the distinct word for Christian love. It can describe the love a Christian husband is to have for his wife (cf. Eph 5:25). It is the word Paul uses in his great love chapter: 1 Corinthians 13, when he says that love suffers long (is patient), is kind, does not envy, does not vaunt itself, is not puffed up, does not behave unseemly, does not seek its own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil, does not rejoice in iniquity but rejoices in the truth (vv. 4-6). This is the word Jesus uses in the new commandment, when he tells the disciples to love one another and the term John uses when he says, “Beloved, let us love one another….” (1 John 4:7-8). God is himself love. He is the definition of love, the standard of love.

The God of the Bible is a God of love. We sometimes criticize mushy-gushy evangelicals for talking of God’s love and not his wrath, but we can become just as unbalanced if we speak only of his wrath and neglect his love.

The God of the Bible is a God of love.

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

Ukraine Trip Journal: Part Two

Friday, August 11 (Kostopil)

After breakfast we took a walk through Kostopil, taking in the local scenes. Many of the houses are neat and colorful. I observed that Eastern Europeans have distinct aesthetic sensibilities that do not necessarily match up with Western ones, especially with regard to symmetry and color schemes. The houses do not have grass yards, but vegetable patches, fruit trees, and flower gardens. This perpetuates a tradition from the Soviet era (or beyond) when home food production was a necessity.

Images: Houses in Kostopil.

We took a tour of Hannah’s school (Number 6). Like many schools, it has undergone a summer cleaning and the rooms were covered with a fresh coat of paint. The lobby had patriotic pictures of students with arms and dressed in camo, as well as a memorial to the 2014 uprising.

Images: Inside School No. 6, Kostopil.

We caught a bus to the city center where we had lunch at Hannah’s favorite pizza place, visited the central Orthodox church, and did some shopping for her apartment. After supper, we walked back to the city center, strolled by the river and then got some ice cream. The town center has a monument to the Ukranian poet Taras Shevchenko (1814-1861). Hannah says this is the norm in each Ukrainian town. It is busy on a warm Friday night with young folk and families milling about, sitting on park benches, talking, socializing, and eating ice cream. We ran into and chatted with a young family from Hannah’s church. By late evening we were back at her apartment where I did some work on fall semester class syllabi and Llew and Hannah watched a movie online.

Image: the Shevchenko memorial in central Kostopil.

Saturday, August 12 (Kostopil)

After breakfast we caught a bus to the outskirts of town to the “quarry” a local swimming hole. It was hot and scores of others had the same idea. Just about every space on the “beach” was filled. We met a young Christian couple and their children, who heard us speaking English. She is a Polish teacher and he works in an evangelical men’s rehab ministry for recovering alcoholics. Sweet people. They gave us a ride back to town in their van.

Image: At the quarry.

After a shower we walked over to meet and have tea with the host family with whom Hannah lived when she first moved to town.

Image: With Hannah's host family, Kostopil.

Ukraine is seven hours ahead of east coast time. By the time we got back to Hannah’s apartment that evening and checked our email and the web we discovered the riots and violence that had transpired in Charlottesville that day. Sad.

Sunday, August 13 (Kostopil-Lviv)

We headed into town early and walked through the outdoors bazaar, where everything seemed to be for sale, from clothes, to food, to flowers, to used power-tools. In conversation with some locals at church later that day I learned the bazaar had been going for about 10 years and did not operate in the communist era.

Images: Passing through the bazaar on our way to church.

From there we went over to the river where Hannah’s church, Word of Life Baptist Church, was holding its annual baptism service. The service last from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm. 21 persons were baptized and the Lord’s Supper was served. I was asked to give a greeting, so I offered a few words from Hebrews 13:1-2, 24-25. My message was interpreted by the pastor’s wife, nine months pregnant, and who had begun having contractions that morning. After service a tasty lunch was served to the assembly which had been catered by a man from Belarus, and fellowship ensued. We got to meet many of Hannah’s friends and some of her students from the school and English clubs. I was also approached by a man (not a church member) who is part of an anti-Russia militia who wanted to talk politics. He told me he had talked on skype once with Senator McCain. With the pastor’s translation help, I tried to talk to him about Christians loving their nations but having their true citizenship in heaven. He did not seem much interested. An older woman named Alexandra, also not a believer, approached and asked me to pray for her as she suffers with breast cancer. I did.

Images: Scenes from Sunday baptismal service.

We got back to Hannah’s apartment about 4:00 pm, packed out bags and caught a bus to the city of Lviv. This is a beautiful city, formerly Polish, and largely untouched by damage in WW2. We checked into our hostel and walked to the city center where we grabbed supper at a patio restaurant that served breakfast food. It was downright chilly, but they provided blankets for patrons. The English menu was confusing. I ordered a drip coffee but it came in a wine glass so I got a cappuccino instead. Llew ordered “hot chocolate” which turned out to be a cup of hot chocolate sauce. It was delicious!

Images: Sunday evening at the hostel and restaurant in Lviv.

Monday, August 14 (Lviv-Krakow, Poland)

We had breakfast at the Lviv branch of Lviv Croissants and explored the central square, including the Opera House and the Shevchenko statue, before catching tram Number 9 to the train station and taking the noon train to Krakow, Poland. We reached Krakow around 6:00 pm. At the border crossing you could see a near immediate difference in tidiness and orderliness on the Polish side.

Image: Shevchenko memorial, Lviv.

Image: Opera House, Lviv.

From the train station, we took a ten-minute walk to our hostel, dropped off our bags in our room, and took a ten-minute walk up Copernicus Street to the city center.

The first thing we encountered in the city square was a festive crowd, a blast of music from a stage, and the sights and smells drifting from scores of pierogi stands. Yes, it was the annual pierogi festival. We loaded up with meat, potato, cabbage, as well as chocolate banana, strawberry, and raspberry-honey pierogis. Tasty! From there we walked through the square, taking in the sites, people-watching, and sites. By the fountain, we listened to the famed trumpet tune with the closing broken note from the towers of the church of St. Mary. We headed back to our hostel about 10:00 pm to go to bed.

Images: Pierogi festival, central Krakow.

Image: Towers of St. Mary's church, Krakow.

Tuesday, August 15 (Krakow, Poland-Lviv)

Before we arrived, we did not know that August 15 was a major holiday in Poland, the feast of Mary’s Assumption. Though most of the country was closed, Krakow’s city center was open and lively.

We met an English walking tour group at the Barbican, the old fortified gateway to the city, for a two and a half hour tour of the old city. Our guide, a young, out-of-work history teacher did a nice job.

He pointed out that Poland was founded in 966 and Krakow in 1257. The Germans occupied Krakow, which had a significant German population, in WW2 and did some redesigns to the city center. The city was spared destruction in the war and retains many of its medieval streets and buildings.

We walked from the Barbican back through the square. The guide told us the story of the trumpeter of Krakow, having been hit by an enemy arrow as he played a warning note, was a legend created by American author Eric Kelly in his 1929 Newberry award winning children’s book, though the hourly trumpet call was indeed a tradition from the middle ages to report fires, attacks, etc.

The guide took us by the cloth hall and pointed out the knife posted over the entrance to warn thieves of the consequences of stealing.

From there we walked to the Jagiellonian University, founded in 1364, the oldest university in Poland. Noteworthy alumni include Copernicus (1473-1543) and Pope John Paul II (1920-2005). We watched the clock with moving figures in the university courtyard and then walked through the “professors’ garden” with memorials to various teachers, including a number who were sent to concentration camps during the Nazi occupation of the city. From there we walked to the Copernicus statue and then through the park past the “pope’s window” where JP2 greeted crowds who gathered to see him when he visited Krakow in the communist era. The guide told us that there are over a 1,000 monuments to JP2 in Poland and over 30 in Krakow.

From there we walked to the baroque church of Peter and Paul, alongside the church of St. Andrew, the oldest in Krakow. Then, it was up the oldest medieval street in Europe to the castle hill, where we explored the castle complex, palaces, and cathedral, ending the tour at an overlook over the Vistula River.

Image: Gathering for the walking tour at the Barbicon.

Image: The knifc suspended over the entrance to the cloth hall.

Image: In the couryard of Poland's oldest university.

Image: Copernicus statue.

Image: The "Pope" window, Krakow.

Image: Up the medieval street to the castle.

Image: The cathedral in the castle complex.

Image: A memorial to JP2.

Image: Overlooking the Vistula River.

From there we had lunch at a restaurant in the castle area and walked back through the city. At a bookstore, I picked up a copy of dissident philosopher Leskek Kolakowski’s selected essays Is God Happy? We got ice cream, toured St. Mary’s church, shopped, and took in more sites in the city center. We ended the day with supper at a Lebanese restaurant on the square and then walked to the train station where we caught a 10:00 pm overnight train back to Lviv, spending the night in a triple bunk sleeper cabin, awoken at the border to check out passports.

Image: On the train back to Lviv.

Wednesday, August 16 (Lviv-Kiev)

We reached Lviv at c. 7 am, stored our bags in a train station locker and took bus 31 into the city center (the ride cost 4 UH). We toured the Latin Cathedral (Polish church) before sitting down for a great breakfast at one of Hannah’s favorite cafes. From there we went to the city center to join an English walking tour. We got started with the tour but dropped out after about an hour to explore on our own.

We watched a Ukranian team filming a musical scene in the town hall square. We watched the Lviv trumpeter play his tune from the city hall (a tradition begun in 2011, probably borrowed from Krakow,, but not a bad tourish ploy!) and then payed 20 UH to climb to the top of the city hall building for spectacular views of the city. On the way down we ran into one of Hannah’s students from Kostopil and her mother.

We noted a display by the city hall noting the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. From there we toured an amazing coffee company where coffee is ground and packaged on site and donned helmets to explore its cavernous underground where coffee is served and prepared with torch flames. Then it was on to a chocolate company where we each picked a few pieces of chocolate (mango was so good!) and climbed to the roof top tables to enjoy our purchases. Lviv is a great city to visit. I predict it will be a major tourist destination of Americans/Westerners once things settle down in Ukraine.

Images: Scenes in Lviv.

From there we visited an outdoor marketplace and then an outdoor bookmarket. We had a late afternoon meal at a Georgian restaurant before heading back to the train station to retrieve our bags and board an overnight train to Kiev.

Images: The Lviv outdoorbook market with Putin "momentos"

Thursday, August 17 (Kiev-Vienna-Zurich-Virginia)

We arrived in Kiev at c. 4 am and took a half hour cab ride to the airport, checked our luggage, said our farewells to Hannah, and entered security to catch our 7 am plane to Vienna. It was sad to part from Hannah, but we had had a great time and are proud of what she was been able to do and accomplish in Ukraine, a country she now loves. We will see her back stateside soon. From Vienna we headed to Zurich and from there to Washington, Dulles. Our plane landed an hour early at 2:30 pm at Dulles. Hard to believe we had started the day arriving on a train in Kiev. The other Riddle children met us at the airport and we were back home to North Garden by 6:00 pm.

Image: In the Kiev airport: "We meet to part, but part to meet"