Israel Study Tour with The Forge, Pine Cove

Mar 12-24, 2016

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Flourishing in the Wilderness

Shalom friends and family! Thanks so much for following along with us on our adventure in Israel and for praying for us. Today was our second full day and we had a GREAT day today! We are still getting over some jet lag and sleeplessness, but for the most part we are feeling well!

Today we went into the wilderness to get a picture of the Exodus. We started our day at Makhtesh Ramon and had a long hike through the crater as we looked at all that God wanted to teach Israel (and us) through their time in the wilderness. We then made our way north to the fortress of Masada and learned about Herod the Great and the remarkable story of the Jewish zealots who made their last stand there against the Romans. We finished off our day with a one-of-a-kind and once in a lifetime experience: floating in the Salt Sea!

Masada

The summit of Masada sits 190 feet (59 m) above sea level and about 1,500 feet (470 m) above the level of the Dead Sea. The mountain itself is 1950 feet (610 m) long, 650 feet (200 m) wide, 4,250 feet (1330 m) in circumference, and encompasses 23 acres. The “Snake Path” climbs 900 feet (280 m) in elevation. From the west, the difference in height is 225 feet (70 m).

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After learning yesterday how important faith is to our relationship with God and the world around us, today we spent time considering how God cultivates faith in our lives. It was sobering for us to consider how generous God is towards us and how much he wants us to have a faith-based relationship with Him. It was a challenging day for sure!

Thank you again for your prayers and supporting us on this trip. It’s just been two days of learning here and we are already saying to each other that being here has drastically impacted the way we read the Scriptures. We can’t wait to tell you all about it!

Shalom from the Salt Sea!
—Matt Lantz

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Wow. What have been felt-board stories for me since I was a kid are now coming to life this week. And to get to do this with @laceyjervis is unreal. Thank you, God! #forgeisrael #jervisrael

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Day 2 of Israel was even better as we're slowly winning the game of jet lag, sort of. We wandered in the desert, hiked Masada and floated the Dead Sea - all before dinner! Big takeaway from today: When I start grumbling, I stop following and when I stop following, it's impossible to have faith and obey. Picture at Makhtesh Ramon #forgeisrael

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Shalom from Israel! Our @pinecoveforge students and a group of our full time staff are spending the next 9 days in the Holy Land seeing the Bible come to life. We've been blown away and it's only day 2! Pictured above are all of our @campinthecity staffers after spending the morning hiking through the desert talking about hearing the Lord and responding in obedience. We are grateful! #forgeisrael

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Today was spent in the desert and on Masada. #forgeisrael #isthisrael

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Good hiking here in Israel 😎#ForgeIsrael #4G16

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Day 2: the wilderness!! #ForgeIsrael #4G16

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Ignore my squinty eyes and crazy hair but we hiked dis! #forgeisrael #isthisrael

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