January 8, 2016
Hey everyone! Today was our last day in Rome and it was a BIG one! We started off with a fascinating tour of the Roman Coliseum, Forum, Catacombs and the Church of Saint Clement. We couldn’t believe our eyes! Not only was it magnificent to see, but we really began to realize what the culture of the first century was like as we learned more and more about the Roman Empire. It has really helped us understand our New Testament. We can’t wait to share with you what we’ve learned!
Tomorrow we start our long journey home, so this will be our final blog post. Please pray for safe travels and we will contact you when we get back to the States!
January 6, 2016
We had a 20 hour day yesterday, flying from Istanbul, touring Philippi, and then finishing the day flying to Athens. It was quite the day!
Today we started fresh here in Greece by visiting Corinth and Athens.
Due to slow internet and a fast paced schedule this post is light! Enjoy the photos and keep your prayers coming.
January 4, 2016
Today we traveled from Izmir to Istanbul and got to enjoy the beauty of the Hagia Sophia. It was astounding to be able to be in a building that was once a church, then a mosque and now a museum . . . and 1600 years old. After exploring, we made our way to do some shopping in Istanbul’s famous Grand Bazaar.
Tomorrow those of us who are coming home start heading that way and the rest of us journey on to Greece! It will be a long day, so we might not get pictures up. Thanks for praying for us!
January 2, 2016
Today we are reliant. Reliant in prayer as we have seen prayers for health answered and reliant in prayer because we are learning to bond with the biting cold weather as we ask God to prepare us for what he has before us every step of the way.
Our first stop, Pergamum (Revelation 2: 12-17)
Matt took us on a different type of adventure today, he challenged us to think about the different candidates for what “satan’s throne” might be in reference to the letter to Pergamum.
January 1, 2016
It’s the New Year! January 1st, 2016! Many of us celebrated the New Year at our hotel last night with a mini dance party at about 9:30 pm. We did our own count down and everything and made it to bed by 10:30. And while all of our friends and family were celebrating the New Year States-side, we were having our 8 am morning devotion here. Overall, we are doing well—we are over jet lag and just trying to stay energized and warm. It’s been close to frigid—especially for us Texans!
Today, we saw two main sites: the ancient cities of Sardis and Thyatira. There have been civilizations in Sardis as early as 1400 BC. Sardis has been under the Heraclid Kingdom, followed by the Mermnad Kingdom, then the Lydians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans. Sardis still contains the best preserved temple to Artemis, the goddess of war and the hunt. The remains of that temple is where we had our first lesson on Revelation 3:1-3. Then we went to another part of Sardis where we saw a breathtaking Roman bath, and the largest, best preserved Jewish Synagogue in the Diaspora. At that synagogue, we finished our lesson on Jesus’ words to the church in Sardis (Revelation 3: 4-6).
December 30, 2015
Today was another spectacular day for us! It was much colder today, but we managed to stay warm pretty well and were able to see all that we intended to see. We are grateful to God for the good weather we have had thus far.
Today we began studying the 7 Churches of Revelation. Our day began at the ancient ruins of Hierapolis where we considered the reality of what losing your life so that you can find it really entailed for the members of the early church. We also got to spend some time at the end of the site exploring the travertine falls on the Southern end of the city. It’s not snow; those are calcium and other mineral deposits from the hot spring nearby.
December 29, 2015
It’s not everyday you wake up to the sun rising over the Beydağları mountains on your right and the Mediterranean Sea to your left. But today? Ah, yes, today we did and it was as breathtakingly beautiful as you can imagine. Greetings from one of the most beautiful and historically rich countries I’ve visited thus far. It’s a little much to take in and process, but I’m feeling great and rested from the long day of traveling we had to get here. To say that I’m excited for what God has for me here is an understatement.
December 28, 2015
Hello everyone! We made it to our hotel in Antalya, Turkey! It was a really long day of travel, but we are all so very excited to be here and looking forward to a good night sleep. Everyone is doing well although we did have about 10-15 bags that didn’t make the flight from Istanbul, so we hope to be getting those in the morning.
Tomorrow we are looking forward to a BIG day! We’ll be seeing and studying much of Paul’s 1st missionary journey.
December 14, 2015
Our trip to Asia Minor (Turkey, Greece, and Rome) will be here before you know it!
Once we’ve arrived, we’ll begin posting periodic updates and photos. Check back often or get update notifications by entering your email address in the subscribe form at the top of this page.
We’ll be sharing our travel experiences online with you, our friends and family, to not only bring you along on the journey with us, but to also solicit your ongoing prayer and support. Most of us on this trip have been preparing mentally and spiritually for what will be a life-changing experience in the land where much of Scripture happened. We’re also preparing physically as we train our bodies to handle all the time we’ll spend on our feet walking. So please pray that we would be diligent in our preparations and we would all be ready to learn what God has to teach us!