Monday, March 30, 2015

Israel // Day Four

Israel // Day Four

Mount Hermon, one of the northernmost boundaries of Israel.

Nazareth Village, a small reproduction of a first-century farm and village in the middle of the modern-day town of Nazareth.

This is what the ancient synagogue may have looked like.

Mount Arbel, a mountain near the Sea of Galilee (there's Mount Hermon in the distance. It's easy to spot because it was the only mountain with snow on it).

Lunch: tilapia from the Sea of Galilee.

We rode this boat out onto the Sea of Galilee!

Apparently you can jump off, but not jump of.

Out in the middle of the lake, my professor played "Gadol Elohai", "How Great is Our God" in Hebrew. We had sung this song a few times in class to learn to Hebrew words, but singing praises to our God in Hebrew on the Sea of Galilee was amazing. 

The "Jesus Boat", a first-century fishing boat discovered in the Sea of Galilee. This would have been the type of fishing boat the disciples would have owned.

Roman synagogue in Capernaum. This building sits on top of the synagogue that Jesus would have been in.

The Bible does not list a specific site for the Sermon on the Mount, so this hill is one of the possible locations. Sitting here, listening to my professor read through the sermon and then spending time just praying as the sun set behind the hills was one of my favorite parts of the trip.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Israel // Days One-Three

Israel // Day One

Hanging out at the airport in Philadelphia. 
Thanks to some ice, we sat on the plane for two and a half hours before finally taking off.

Israel // Day Two

Arriving at the Heathrow Airport in London and being stuck there for almost six hours.
Finally arriving in Tel Aviv, Israel, when it was too dark to see anything, and ten out of twenty-five people in our group lost their luggage.

Israel // Day Three

I woke up and rushed to the window to look out over the Mediterranean Sea. Such a perfect way to begin our Israel tour.

First stop: Caesarea Maritima, a port city built by Herod the Great.

I loved traveling with these crazy people. 

Next stop: Megiddo which was a fortress city in the Mount Carmel mountain range.

Napping on the bus happened every day, even after the jet lag wore off. Thankfully those of us who stayed awake were kind to the sleepers.

Our hotel for the next few nights was right on the shore of the Sea of Galilee. The lake was beautiful in and of itself, but just thinking of all that Jesus did on and around the lake made it even more amazing.

(snippets from my travel journal)

So many people think of Israel as a land of terrorism and unrest and as the land of the Bible, but we forget that there are people just like us living their lives here day-to-day just like we do wherever we are. 

I did not realize just how close together everything here is. The "triangle" of Jesus's Sea of Galilee ministry is actually quite small.

The Sea of Galilee is beautiful, but it's nothing super out of the ordinary at face value. I love that God did not choose a land for His people that holds a plethora of natural resources or is extraordinarily beautiful beyond any other place. Instead, He chose a normal place in which to carry out His plan of redemption. 

While standing with my feet in the water looking out over the Sea, I thought about how the landscape here is pretty much the same as it was when Jesus put His feet in the water. Other places we go, buildings have fallen down and new cities have been erected over the past 2000 years, but here the mountains and the water have stayed mostly the same. When I look out over the water, I am seeing things the way my Savior saw them.

P.S. If you are a history buff, I can give you more information on each of the places we visited if you would like, but I figured I wouldn't take up a lot of room in this post with all of that. 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Quick Israel Update

The Sea of Galilee

Hello, all! 
Well, I made it safely to Israel in spite of travel delays. I am currently typing on my phone, so forgive the spelling and punctuation errors.
Anyway, I am just popping in to say that you can follow me on instagram to get updates on my trip. I am using instagram to keep my family updated, as well, so I will hopefully be posting every day. 
I hope you have a wonderful day!