Saturday, April 30, 2011

Jaunt to the Parthenon, Nashville, TN

Sorry for the delay in updates here...had some technical difficulties uploading posts from a laptop in rural Kentucky!  Watch for some more posts coming soon covering the rest of our tour!

So Wednesday was my chance to exercise the inner geek in me and take the kids to The Parthenon in Nashville.  It's a life size replica of the "real" one over in Greece (of course!)  As we left Jellystone it was pouring rain and the kids were pretty grouchy about having to get in the car again.  The whole way there I was thinking to myself, "Why in the world am I doing this???  Why am I bothering to drive 100 extra miles for one building?"  Then we pulled into Centennial Park and the kids got their first glimpse of the Parthenon, and I knew why we "bothered".  They were in awe.  I had been there before and they looked at pictures online, but it didn't prepare them for just how cool this building is.  They eagerly raced out of the car and ran (still in the rain!) to check it out.  They counted the pillars (46 around the outside) and marveled at the huge stone steps and intricate carving.  Inside we took a quick look at the art museum in the basement, then headed to the main floor for the "main attraction"...the 45 foot statue of Athena.  The looks on their faces as we emerged from the elevator were enough to make my day!  And I was happy to see how much Lancelot (my oldest, age 8) remembered from our studies of the Greeks this year.  He read the information on the plaques and even knew quite a few things before he even looked at them.  The statue itself is painted with 8 lbs. of gold...we were all pretty impressed with that, and the main doors are solid bronze, weighing 7.5 tons each!  Believe it or not, I think The Parthenon has been their favorite stop yet (except maybe for "The Olde Gener'l Store" we went to this morning...think every KY stereotype all wrapped up in one glorious tourist shop!) 

The most important thing I wanted my kids to understand from this stop, though, was not just how impressive the building is, but what the Greeks built it for.  As beautiful and glorious as Athena may be, they know she is only made of rock and metal.  They know how sad it is that an entire culture would lavish so much time and so many resources on this "thing", and even build temples for it.  We are blessed to know and worship a Living God who does not dwell in statues or temples, but in our own hearts.  

"Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Aereopagus and said, 'Men of Athens!  I see that in every way you are very religious.  For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.  Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.  The God who made the world and everything in it is the LORD of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands.  And He is not served by human hands, because He Himself gives all men life and breath and everything else...'"  Acts 17:22-25

No comments:

Post a Comment