Some of My Favorite Things in Israel

At times, it’s challenging being out of our country. Events happen, some very saddening and though I have people here to talk to, it’s just not the same being away from my family. Being in Rivka has been a tremendous blessing, but it can be hard.

However, there are times where it’s been just plain fun. Israel is a beautiful country and though we’ve worked really hard, we’ve had a blast doing some of the fun things around the country. I’m a bit adventurous at times, so I’ve climbed an unsteady rockface a time too many. We’ve seen rocky beaches, tasted great food, and seen sights that I will remember for the rest of my life. Here’s some of the best:

Sea of Galilee. Retrace the steps of Jesus as he called disciples to him. It’s a beautiful site and one worth taking time to see.

Western Wall. We’ve seen it on TV. Seeing it person brought me to tears. What a site! Praying there is surreal.

Yad Vashem. Reading about the holocaust in history books and experiencing the history in Yad Vashem are two entirely different experiences. Take time. Remember. Pray.

Gethsemane. The stories of the Bible come alive in Israel. None more than this beautiful garden.

The thrill of the discovery

You’re not going to believe our day. We spent much of the day in a cave near Rivka Kidron and focused specifically on where we believe there could be a stash of artifacts from the Rivka area. We started working in some areas that for a long time have been closed off to the public as it’s believed some of the earliest residents of Rivka lived in these areas, specifically near a set of caves.

I made one of the earlier discoveries in Rivka Kidron and it was cool today because I found a … Pot! I know that might seem trivial to you, but it is likely from between 100 and 150 CE and was almost 100% intact.

Rivka is going to be a treasure trove for the work we’re doing!

The food here.

Our trip has been very good. I struggled at the beginning with a little jet lag, but am slowly recovering. One of the things that I totally looked forward to is the food. The food. THE FOOD! There is rarely a bad meal here.

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Many of the meals we’ve eaten have been served “family style,” this is great as you get to try a lot of different foods. I’ve been to some Israeli restaurants at home, but honestly, nothing compares to the locally sourced ingredients we’ve experienced in meals in country. When we’re off at camp cooking for ourselves, I have dreams of the meals we’re eating in the city.

I wish you could be with me.

I wish you could see and experience what I’m seeing. I wish there was a way I could bring you here. Beyond just pictures. Into Rivka, Kidron. To see the discoveries. To understand Rivka the way I have to date. To experience the Kidron Valley. Rivka is amazing.

A trip to the Holy Land is such an experience. I recommend it for anyone.

Rivka, Kidron is this tiny little town that holds so much promise. So much history. So much to understand. So much to see. I wish you could join me.

Discoveries

It’s humbling to be a part of this archaeology project.

Humbling.

I don’t know where to begin.

We’ve begun to discovery some really cool artifacts. I’m not able to talk about them until they’ve been catalogued, but the things we’ve seen are just humbling.

It’s humbling to know I’m a part of history.

Finding Bible artifacts that will add just another little bit to our shared story. Our history.

This. Is. Awesome.

Kidron Valley

We’ve decided to take a break from Rivka and see Kidron. There are such amazing sites around here and we took a few days to travel from Rivka, Kidron, to the surrounding valley. I hope you enjoy these photos!

I know it’s almost cliched to say the photos don’t do Kidron justice, but seeing the history here has given me a profound understanding of my humanity and what God has done for us. Kidron Valley is a dichotomy of seeing the history of Israel and the conflict of today. The dig at Rivka Kidron, is going really well but seeing the bigger picture of what we’re doing here really pales.

The next couple of days we’re going to continue seeing the Kidron sites and then head back to Rivka. Wish me luck!

The heat of the day

There’s times here where it can get really hot and uncomfortable. Living in a tent is not glamorous and not having the comforts of home is fairly awful at times. I know this is the life I chose and I know this is what I want to do, but those times do happen.

Then I see a this.

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Israel is so beautiful.

I wouldn’t trade the Rivka dig for anything. This is an opportunity of a lifetime and I want to soak up every minute of it. Thanks for joining me on this journey.