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Shalom: Exhausted with JOY!

“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life!” –Rom. 6:4

It’s been a full and exhausting day—but a wonderful one! The temperature was 100F in the shade—and I don’t know that Israel really knows how to A/C anything the way the US does. (But even a bottle of water is refreshing when warm in temperatures like this!)

I met a lot more people today, both from my church and other Foursquare Churches, what an amazing family of God this is! Discussions during breaks, on buses, and at meals were substantial and spiritual—just my type. Mixed in with lots of laughter of course!

Here are a few photos from the day….it’s now time for dinner and I’ve worked up quite an appetite, so I’m outta here. Have a great night!

On the Sea of Galilee—what a beautiful time of praise and worship out on the water that Jesus sailed on! It was amazing to know that, unlike other disputed locations, this one is NOT disputed. This was where He spoke to the seas, walked on the water, and increased the disciples’ catch!

The Mount of Beatitudes was amazingly beautiful! It’s kept up wonderfully with lots of flowers; the photo in the upper right shows a banana field just above where the amphitheater drops down, where the Sermon on the Mount would have been proclaimed.

St Peter’s Fish! We had a fabulous lunch at the Ein Gev Kibbutz—St. Peter’s Fish is tilapia. Yum!

Naphthali, our tour guide!

Pastor Frank preaching John 21….and getting a blessing as well!

The highlight of my day….baptism in the River Jordan! God totally showed up–I have never had that kind of transformation of JOY!
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Shalom: Arrival (part 2)

“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” —Ps 37:4

While my photos are slowly uploading (very slow connection here!) I thought I’d take a minute to tell you all how grateful I am to God for this trip—He has given me the desire of my heart! I never thought it would happen; I had financial obstacle after another, and just when I started sinking into depression about never being able to save the money for the trip, things turned around. Amazingly. Even my dejection seemed to be God’s way of proving to me that He is mightier than my troubles, because He just pulled meright out of it. He’s even willing to blow down the Puget Sound region in a giant windstorm if that’s what it takes to get me to Israel. (That’s a long story!) I just can hardly believe I’m here.

The evening we spent outside after dinner was so lovely, the weather is balmy and warm, but with a near-continual breeze. Looking out over the Sea of Galilee, and realising those were the same hillsides Jesus looked out onto day after day when He was here, that this was the lake He walked on, this was the lake Peter swam to His Lord cooking fish on the beach. . . it’s almost too much to take in, and I’m only sitting at a modern hotel. I can’t wait until tomorrow; we get to go on that boat ride, and visit Capernaum, and the thing I’ve been looking forward to so much, the Mount of Beatitudes!

One of our Pastors, Scott, showing us a “sign from God” about where to go for the bus!

A view of a Palestinian community with its minneret (taken from the bus).

A view of the Sea of Galilee from a switchback as we went down to lower Tiberias.

The salad bar and part of the dessert bar! I ate foods I couldn’t identify—those who know my picky taste buds would have been proud.


The hotel we’re staying at, the Gai Beach Resort in Tiberias. Photos taken after dinner at dusk, facing east.
Goodnight, sleep well!

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Shalom: Safe arrival!

“. . . the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.” —Ps 121:8

Me and Maggie (my roomie!) overlooking the Sea of Galilee!


Hallelujah, we’re here! What a wonderful place!

Our flight was again uneventful; about 10 hours worth of travel by air, and we transferred to a bus in Tel Aviv to take us to Tiberias. I sat with a lovely woman and new friend, Christina, and we enjoyed the sights out our window and talked. My photos out our window didn’t turn out all that well but I’m hoping to talk Christina into letting me download her pics since she had a better camera!

We drove along the border of the West Bank; I was surprised that the wall was only for portions of the border, not the whole thing—it separates the most populated areas of Palestinians from the high-population regions of Israel proper. Palestinian communities are notable by two things, one is minnerets at each mosque, the other being architecture—homes are built individually by each family, and structures are up to them, so communities don’t necessarily “match.” (I assume few housing codes or HOAs).

Turning north we aimed toward Tiberias, and the views of the lower Galilee valleys were breathtaking! Some areas were green and planted with all sorts of beautiful patterns of plants, trees, and vines, others were in the midst of harvest so looked dry, but the land here is rich and fertile.

We’re about to go for dinner now, I hope to get back here to post a few more thoughts later. Just wanted to say hello from Tiberias quickly!

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Shalom: Early blessing!

“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine…” –Eph 3:20

Now this was a total treat….through various blessings for our tour group, we each arrived in the security area to an envelope with our name on it. I joked, “Oh, is it spending money??” (thinking, of course, that it was a bus ticket for when we land in Tel Aviv.) But no, what a blessing to find spending money inside!


(I suppose it could be illegal to really show you on the internet what the money looks like, so you only get a peek!)

We’re just about to board . . . so the next post will be from the Holy Land!

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Shalom: Waiting

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him. . . ” –Psalm 37:7
Well, we’re in the Newark Liberty International Airport…our long layover really feels long from the middle of it!

Our flight across the U.S. was uneventful; I sat next to a very sweet newlywed couple returning from their honeymoon in Alaska. I got to hear about the wedding day, how they met, all their adventures on their trip, and even hear about their Pre-Cana classes (Roman Catholic pre-marital counseling). It sounds like they have some wonderful mentors for their journey in marriage. Blessings to you, new friends!

Our little group had breakfast together when we arrived, and I decided that stromboli really was not made to host breakfast foods. Live and learn! I also decided that the company paid to carpet the floor at this airport needs to be reminded that carpeting should have padding below it, since passengers on long layovers might like to nap a while. Ah well. If they ever call me for advice, I’ll be certain to pass that on!

My companions are asleep for now, so I think I’ll surf the web a bit and keep occupied . . . only 5.5 more hours til we depart for the long leg of travel—10 hours (ish?) to Israel!

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Shalom: Israel trip itinerary

“They were on their way up to Jerusalem, with Jesus leading the way…” –Mk 10:32


I’ve told many of you about this trip…so here is our itinerary. I am so excited! Check out Eye on Israel for a great online map… Most of the itinerary items below are links to sites about the place, and I can’t wait to have seen these with my own eyes (and camera!)…… Happy surfing!

Sunday, July 15

  • 10:35pm – leave Seattle for Tel Aviv via a loooooooong layover in Newark

Tuesday, July 17

  • 9:35 Arrive in Tel Aviv!
  • Gai Beach Hotel

Wednesday, July 18

Thursday, July 19

  • Mt Precipice (overlooking Nazareth and Jezreel Valley)
  • Tel Megiddo (Armageddon)
  • Mt Carmel (site where Elijah challenged prophets of Baal)
  • Caesarea on the Mediterranean Sea

Friday, July 20, 2007

Saturday, July 21

Sunday, July 22

Monday, July 23

  • Convention Day 2, morning session
  • Yad Vashem (Holocaust Museum)
  • Model City
  • Shrine of the Book (Dead Sea Scrolls)
  • Convention Day 2, evening session

Tuesday, July 24

Wednesday, July 25

Thursday, July 26

  • arrive at SeaTac 11:03am
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Bless the Little Children

“And He took the children in His arms, put His hands on them and blessed them.” —Mark 10:16

These two accordion mini-albums have been in progress for a little bit, but I finally finished them off tonight; they’re for two colleagues whose wives just had babies. I was hoping to get them done before they both returned to the office, but once again, the best laid plans of mice and men…what’s the rest of that quote….?

These albums are each 6 panels, 4.25″ x5.5″ each. Since I finished them this evening, I hope they count for the Caardvarks 5-embellishment challenge!




Oh where to begin….I think the papers are Wild Magnolia from a stack; a few baby stamps from the dollar rack at Michaels; the K in NIKO is actually the leftover bits of the “k” sticker from a sheet that already had the K removed…I recycle everything! Lots of misc ribbon, buttons, stickers and bling. If you want to know something specific, ask and I’ll see if I can figure out where it came from!

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Button Baby

” . . . their children will be blessed.” —Ps 37:26

This little baby card is for a friend who just had a new little one . . . and it works for the Wednesday Stamper button challenge!

Buttons and ribbons are random scraps; “baby” stamp is one of the dollar stamps.

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Freedom is not Free

“Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.” -Ps 127:1

On this Independence Day, I find myself thinking about and praying for those who sacrifice for me. Soldiers, airmen, marines, our heroes who give of themselves for a nation they love. I may disagree with the decisions of our nation’s leaders, but I have the utmost respect for our troops who put their lives on the line for me every day. The least I can do is uphold them in prayer! If you’re interested in praying particularly for the city of Baghdad, the Baghdad Prayer Patrol is a great daily reminder email to sign up for.

Today I’ve spent a good bit of time working on cards that will be sent to injured soldiers—these men and women deserve so much more than a little card!

The eagle card was created with a stamped eagle and sentiment sent to me by a friend; stars by Inkadinkadoo and Stampendous. Eagle is colored with Tombow brush markers and raised with popdots. Stitching drawn by hand using a Uniball Signo pen.