New Years Eve in New York
Probably not how you thought this story was going to start off was it? Well technically I spent the holiday in the Big Apple but in reality, I was on a runway at the JFK airport ready to take off on my first trip to Israel.
This trip almost did not happen for me. I was on a waiting list to be added to a group of 20 other undergrad students from my university to go for 10 days to experience the Holy Land and to learn about Middle Eastern international affairs. When I got the call that a spot opened up it was a 100% yes to the opportunity.
So on January 1 we arrived in Tel Aviv where we were greeted by members of Passages, the organization who would be hosting us.
Our schedule for the week looked a little like this:
1/2 - Jaffa. Mount Precipice. Nazareth.
1/3 - Jordan River. Mount of Beatitudes. Sea of Galilee & surrounding region. Capernaum. Nukeib Overlook.
1/4 - Bar'am. Caesarea Phillipi. Golan Heights/Mount Bental.
1/5 - Jerusalem. Kiryat Gat.
1/6 - The Temple Mount. Hezekiah's Tunnels. King David's Palace. Pool of Siloam. Western Wall.
1/7 - Mount of Olives. Garden of Gethsemane. Pools of Bethesda. Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Garden Tomb.
1/8 - Masada. Dead Sea. Dead Sea Scrolls.
1/9 - Yad Vashem: Holocaust Museum. Bible Land's Museum.
1/10 - Caesarea. Carmel Market. Airport.
The schedule speaks for itself, our days were PACKED. In addition to the places we went, we also had lectures every night on current events from local leaders.
My immune system took a toll on me, so much that I found myself very familiar with the local hospital and pharmacies. But when you are in Israel you just can't let that stop you.
Israel is a captivating place. The people. The culture. Their history. Their struggles. Their triumphs. This country and it's people impacted my thought and the way I reach out arms of grace and love for the better. I think I will forever be processing the lessons I learned from this trip.
Below are some pictures and with every picture, I promise you there is a long story to be told, too long to be put here. Find me and ask me about them! Below also is my playlist from my trip.