I never thought a journey could be a “JOY-ney” and a dream could be most meaningful.
Whereas I have this fascination about ancient civilizations and ruins..
Whereas a tour of the Holy Land is just a number in my bucket list…
Whereas a Trip to Jerusalem is just a game I used to play….
Now the dream has become a reality. Dreams really do come true with God’s grace and in His time. Yipee!
Why was this pilgrimage meaningful/ memorable?:
- Every tour started with daily teaching sessions to guide and give us insights so we become familiar with bible history and geography. Possible biblical references were cited as we step into the story of our spiritual roots and its relevance in our daily lives. Now it’s time to reflect and re-read the bible from a new perspective.
- The climb to Mount Sinai taught us a lot of lessons foremost of which is to give thanks in everything and trust God every step of the way (Psalm 121). Isn’t that our theme song, Trust and Obey?” At the summit, we saw a breathtaking view of the desert and a spectrum of colors as the sun rises. It was just awesome and it made me realize how small I am compared to the grandeur of His universe. Super-duper triple WOW!.
- I was held at the immigration of the Egyptian-Israeli Taba border upon entry for reasons I don’t know. The Immigration officer was however kind enough to say that nothing is the matter and just let me go. Then I was given a certificate of appreciation as a true friend of Israel before my flight back home. Actually I believe that all of us in our group (167 participants) were given this certificate.
- We enjoyed an unsinkable swim at the Dead Sea. (May bonus pang mud pack made from the dead sea minerals). A lot of thanks to our sponsor for the mud pack. 🙂
- We’ve had a joyful worship as we sing and dance on a boat ride to the Sea of Galilee. The throwing of stones is so significant as it symbolizes our desire to throw away any obstacle in our ride with Jesus. This is my favorite part of the journey as I’m alive singing, Hava Nagila and Hevenu Shalom Aleichem! I didn’t realize I know a Hebrew song or two by heart.
- Baptism at the Jordan River, accepting Jesus as our one and only saviour reminds us that we were redeemed not by silver or gold but with Christ’s blood.
- “What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?” Psalm 8:4
As I pray int the Garden of Gethsemane, I try to recall how painful it must have been for Jesus to be punished for sins He had not committed and to feel that He had been abandoned by His Father in Heaven. I sat down and wept as I reflected on my own sinfulness and yet He loved me enough to die for my sins. (Who am I that You are mindful of me… That You hear me when I call.. Is it true that You are thinking of me… How You love me it’s amazing)
- The swim at the Red Sea and the beautiful pools and spa at Movenpick Hotel was so refreshing after a long drive from Israel to Jordan. The best swim ever.. 🙂
- The visit to the Holocaust museum reminds me of the realities of war and the atrocities done to the Jewish people and God’s faithfulness in keeping His promise to gather His people and bring them back to the Promise Land.
- What can I sing as we take a walking tour of Petra to witness the majestic sights of the Al-Khazna Treasury?
Answer: You’re so amazing, just the way you are
- Plus ONE….. The friends and acquaintances we met as we go on our journey are just wonderful. Includes not only the tour participants but also other pilgrims, OFWs, foreign nationals, our tour guides and speakers, etc.. etc. .. And for this I’d like to say, THANK YOU, people!
Oh, I have to add several more.. mention the sphinx and the great pyramids and ancient Jerusalem and the great water shows at the Tiberium, etc., etc., again.. but for me, these are the ones that made the most impact.