June 27, 2017
5:30 am wake up call came a little early as we are coming to a close of our trip. We headed to the airport to fly into Istanbul for our last teaching site. Friendships have been formed, new relationships have budded and a deep respect for the teaching team for a job well done. We have had the most wonderful trip together which includes sweating in busses, waking up in the middle of the night because the air conditioning went out, hiking, climbing, racing down a mountain to catch a ferry back to the cruise ship all while dodging donkeys.
June 26, 2017
The morning began on the cruise ship where things were a bit more hectic than the previous day. People everywhere, scurrying to and fro in anticipation of disembarking. On land, we collected our luggage, hopped onto a bus and headed towards the ancient city of Corinth with a quick stop at the Corinth Canal beforehand.
June 25, 2017
Today it was up early and off the the Island of Crete and the Palace of Knossos. It is the oldest site of ruins we have visited. It’s thought that it was occupied as far back as 6,000 be.
The palace we visited was built around 1900 bc by the Minoan People who came to Crete around 2500 bc. Later they were conquered by the Miceans whom we know as the ancient Philistines. The apostle Paul visited Crete three times. First in a missionary journey with Titus and then as a prisoner on his way to Rome.
June 24, 2017
The best way to describe today, in one word, would be change. Changing from land to sea, from Turkey to Greece, from our tour guide Ozan to a new guide Yannis and from raw, preserved ruins to decorative ornate attractions.
These past few days, we have been treading through ruins that have been bare and authentic. Opening up the Word and diving into text that unfolded right beneath our feet. But today we observed a completely different adaption of biblical history. Where the focus was more about the place and the holiness of the structure than the power of the message that had and would be delivered from that place.
June 23, 2017
This morning we explored Aphrodisias, which although not a Biblical site provides is with a lot of context for the early church. The city as you can tell by its name is dedicated to the Greek god Aphrodite to whom the Roman emperors traced their lineage. One of the focal points of this city was the sebastion, a walk way leading to the temple with 3 story high panels of marble depicting stories. The top level was panels of Greek mythology and the gods (including emperors), middle was panels of Roman history, and the bottom was no panels representing the common man. As we sat and marveled at this panels Shae challenged us to view the panels in a Biblical view in regard to Ephesians 1 and 2. Ultimately God is above all, but we are His workmanship to show his glory (Eph. 2:10). What are our panels showing to the world? What will they depict to future generations when we are gone?
June 22, 2017
For months I’ve been telling people that on this trip we are going to get to read a passage from the Bible and be standing where it happened. Today we stood on three different sites and learned about the people who walked those same roads 2000 years ago.
June 21, 2017
Our first official day of touring and learning is finally complete. As we head to sleep our minds are racing through the last multitude of hours of everything that we learned today. Going from city to city on a tour bus is exciting and yet still taxiing on our minds but primarily our legs. At each site we went to, we were able to walk through ruins of a city that is no more.
June 19, 2017
The anticipation mounts as we are waiting to board from LAX. With just a few hours before we leave for Turkey, our captain, Brad Bell, gathered the troops to give us a few last minute preparations. We were all given beautifully laminated 5×6 cards of the Apostles’ Creed. Then, Brad let us know about our new “Families,” this is done so that we don’t leave anyone and preferably avoid an international incident. Finally, Brad led us in prayer. Please have us in your prayers.