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Kicking off day 2 here in Israel.  What an incredibly beautiful & ancient country, rich in history.  Seems like you could stick a shovel in the ground about anywhere and encounter artificats & history that's thousands of years old.

Now to the update.

Yesterday afternoon, we had the chance to see ancient Jericho.  Off in the distance, we could see things like the Dead Sea, the Jordan River, Mt. Nebo where Moses looked across the Jordan and passed away, and the capital of Jordan (Ammann).  We got to actually stand in the VERY SPOTS in Jericho like the archaeological site where they are exploring the walls that Joshua saw knocked down, the valley of Acbor where Achan was stoned for stealing from Jericho, an ancient foot/camel path leading up into the hills of Jerusalem where the story of "The Good Samaritan" took place, a huge ancient sycamore tree on the site of where Jesus called Zacchaeus called him out of the tree to eat with him, a house on the site of Zacchaeus' house, and an ancient city gate near where Jesus healed Blind Bartimaeus' sight.  Wow.

We got to see the very places where Ben's dad is serving the people of the community in a host of ways.  And we got to hear his hopes & dreams to serve as a peacemaker to the people of this area, having met THE "Prince of Peace" himself in a way that changed his heart forever.

We also eat like pigsJabba the Hut…"kings" at every meal.  The hospitality of these ancient peoples is well deserved.  Every meal is an EVENT with love & laughter & stories & food & food & food.  Also. at every meal, I keep needling Ben, telling our host, "I think Ben would like more kebob/hummus/fruit/etc.  He's wasting away!"  🙂

Done with breakfast now & ready for more exploring with Ben's dad, seeing how he loves & cares for & blesses the people of this land.  We're also here dreaming how a similar trip might look like for our church someday.