Katie’s post from Sunday

Every day I am more convinced that every single square inch of Israel is absolutely gorgeous!
I’m writing this on Sunday, so yesterday we visited Masada, En Gedi, Qumran, and the Dead
Sea. Everything around here is desert. But it’s incredibly beautiful nonetheless. And then in the
middle of this desert you have the Dead Sea and this oasis called En Gedi.
Unfortunately I don’t have time to write about each location, but En Gedi is where David wrote
many of the Psalms. And in the hills all around are caves where David and his men would have
hidden from Saul. So many of the illustrations used in the Psalms make so much more sense
after seeing En Gedi. When David talks about his soul waiting for the Lord “in a dry land where
there is no water” This land is dry! The one thermometer we saw yesterday said 38 celsius.
Also, there are references in the Psalms to some of the animals that live here, along with the
clefts of the rock and the water brooks. And as a musician I can see how the environment here
would be very inspiring to write songs in. I wish I had a day to sit here with a guitar!
Today we visited the Holocaust museum and the Israel museum. I’ve done a lot of study on the
holocaust, and what always gets me is how the whole thing started (What allowed it to take
place, what were the signs, what could have prevented it, etc) and how the church responded
(whether that be turning a blind eye to the whole thing, or those few who risked their lives to
save the Jews). I wrote down something from one of the signs in the museum that stuck out to
me: “A country is not just what it does – it is also what it tolerates.” We need to pray for boldness
for the church today. Let us learn from history and not remain silent in the name of tolerance.
Can’t believe tomorrow is the last day of the tour! At the same time it feels like we have been
here much longer that 9 days. Every day has been packed full, we have seen so much!
Much love in Christ Jesus,