One year ago today, Hubs and I woke up before any human should after a mere 4 hours of sleep. We were running behind and our ride showed up promptly as we threw everything together, triple-checked that we had our passports, and ran out the door. Eleven hours later, we landed in one of the most coveted pieces of land in the world. Israel.
When people told us that we needed to see Israel, I believed them, but I didn’t really understand why. Now I agree wholeheartedly, but I can’t completely explain to you why. It is more than being able to put landscapes with the stories and it is more than knowing the distances between towns and the different terrains. But if given the opportunity, you should make sacrifices in order to go. I would, to go again.
And, I dare say that the experience Hubs and I had was completely different than what a person would get if you just signed up for any ol’ tour of Israel. Don’t do that. Hubs and I went on a study trip. We didn’t just carry around our cameras; we had notebooks and maps and Bibles and booklets of information. We didn’t just sleep on the bus rides; we were being taught and were taking notes. It was as if I was in college again, except this time learning things that really matter and trying to absorb and meditate on the abundance of truth imparted to us each day.
So, if you are going to spend all that money to get there, do it only if you have a teacher who can delve into the truths of the gospel. Sure, you can be impressed with a church structure that was built to commemorate a possible location in the Bible. Or, you can be interested in learning about the history of the current nation of Israel. And you can even be entranced in the different cultures. But, you won’t be nearly as edified as going with someone who has made it his life’s aim to know Jesus deeply and intimately and who has studied and knows and loves Israel because of the love that God has for Israel.
When we returned from Israel, I hardly blogged about it at all. It was so overwhelming and life was a bit chaotic. So, each day of the trip, one year later, I am going to share some of my favorite times there. I have no doubts that this will do no justice to the trip itself, but hopefully will give you a glimpse into why Israel is a place you should go.