Because He Lives...He has blessed me!

Because He Lives...He has blessed me!
My first Grand Blessings

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Israel, What's So Special?

Israel, I have always wanted to visit there. My grandmother went when I was a teenager and brought me back a neat Olive Wood Bible and a wood carved box. I still have the box. She was the typical grandmother, on her own and not the most independent self assured person, I thought. She loved the trip and often spoke to me of it.
She said, "You have to go, if you ever get the chance." Why, I often wondered.

Israel is the land God loved so much that He promised it to Abraham and his family. They were the people of God's choice and Israel is the land of His choice. I wanted to know why? What is so great about it? What makes it the place in the whole world that God is so concerned about? I got the chance to go to check it out for myself.

My church offered a trip to it's members. Peter and I signed up. Everyone thought we were crazy to go there with all the strife and chaos going on in the Middle East. Egypt, Lebanon, Syria and Israel have much going on in their political arenas. But I prayed about it and decided if God wanted me to go then I would. So.....  it just felt right, it felt peaceful, and it felt exciting. So on February 20,2013 we loaded up on a bus drove to the airport with 8 other people from First Baptist, and off we went.

I will say that I never felt uneasy, afraid, or threatened. I was completely at ease for the whole ten days. There was a protest going on because a Palestinian boy was found dead in an Israeli jail. The Palestinians claimed he was tortured to death. We saw the protests on TV but only saw a small gathering in Nazareth and a few kids throwing rocks at some policemen in Bethlehem. I walked alone behind everyone most of the time, because I was so busy taking pictures and looking at everything up close. No one ever bothered me except in Jerusalem one day. A young man came up to me and asked if I was an American. I told him I was and he immediately began to question me in an arguable voice. He wanted to know if I believed in God. I told him I did and I was a Christian. He said to me, "Why would a God put three different religions in one city all together?" He said he thought it was cruel and could not worship a God that would do that. I asked him if he had ever thought that maybe God put them all in one place so that all of His children could figure out how to live together and make peace. He did not know how to answer that question. He said he was going to the hot place and I would be there too and would ask him to light my cigarette. He obviously doesn't know me...... my family will get that..... I HATE cigarettes.  Anyway, that was the only time anyone ever made me feel a little uncomfortable and I wasn't uncomfortable just hoping I said the right thing. I have been praying for him....

Israel is a beautiful place. It is the gateway from Europe to the Middle East and Africa. It is a valuable piece of property.  As a Realtor, I would bet it is the most expensive piece of property in the world. Wars have gone on since the very beginning to gain control of it. Location, location, location. But it is also unique and wonderful. The Golan Heights were the prettiest, I thought. It is green and moutainous and strategically located between Syria and Israel. Israel needs to keep it because it makes it more difficult for Syria to bomb Israel. I loved it.

We drove in the desert and saw the borders of Jordan. Simply awesome. I feel I have visited 3 countries while being in Israel because you can see them so clearly. Lebanon can also be seen from the mountains of Haifa. Believe me, God had a plan. And He is still in control of that land.

It was a very long flight and longer going home. It took us 25.5 hours to get home. I am exhausted and sick. I have bronchitis and a terrible cold. We went non stop for 10 days. We were rushed to and fro, saw so much, I do not regret one thing, but I have never been so tired. It is Wednesday and I am still recovering. As for my grandmother being a little old lady with no independence or stamina, what was I thinking? Maw Coffman, you were so much more than I ever knew. Wish I had talked one on one more often. I am the loser..... I know you are looking at God face to face and asking all the questions I want to ask Him. I also know you interceded for me while I was in Israel and enjoyed watching me take it all in. Thank you.

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