I’m off overseas today! In a few hours, I’ll be on a plane headed to Jordan and Israel for two weeks. I have absolutely no idea what to expect and that is both exhilarating and a little nerve-racking. In true Sophie form, I've been packed and ready to go for days! It is surreal that the day has finally arrived.
There are 22 of us heading off on the biblical lands tour from Tabor: a mix of past and present students, staff and other people who jumped on board when they heard about the awesome opportunity. The trip is actually a double subject as part of my final semester of a Master of Divinity, which is a pretty awesome way to end my degree. The subject is “Jesus in his context” and the name kinda gives away what we are going for. We will be visiting many of the places Jesus went to help us better understand him in the context he lived and ministered. We will be exploring things like: What does it mean that he walked from Judea to Galilee? How far is it? What is the terrain like? Or what was it like to live under Roman occupation? How did that impact Jesus teaching about the kingdom of God? Or why Jesus was crucified with the charge “King of the Jews”. I am excited about the way this trip is going to bring the stories in the Bible to life all the more.
Over the two weeks we will be visiting places like the Jordan River, Nazareth, The Sea of Galilee, Caesarea Philippi (famous for Peter’s confession of Jesus as Messiah), Jerusalem, Bethlehem, the Dead Sea and many other places. I am intrigued by the mix of old and modern that we are going to see. We will also get to interact with people from different cultural and religious backgrounds and learn from them about both the past and the present. I think you always leave a new place changed in some way, having learnt and discovered more about the way other people live and see the world.
I am excited to see the biblical narrative- particularly the Gospels- in a new light and learn by experiencing the physical space of the land it took place. Through the process, I am hoping I get to learn more about who I am and how the Gospel story impacts my life and I can translate that to how it impacts the lives of others. I am excited to think that I won't be the same person I was when I come home in two weeks, having been shaped by other’s stories.
I am also super excited to eat all the hummus and falafel!
How you can be praying for us:
- Safe travel
- That we would have open hearts, a learning posture and a hospitable disposition towards everyone we meet
I'll be posting updates as internet connectivity allows, so stay tuned!
PS. Housemate shoutout for the cute note!