Rejoicing in tribulation
The Dan Panorama Hotel is located right across the boulevard from a beach park on the Mediterranean. It has one of the most extensive buffet breakfasts that we have ever experienced. There are about 150 food choices, not counting condiments. Just some are the 10-15 vegetable salads (yes, breakfast), 5 or more fish choices I don’t recognize plus salmon and tuna, a half dozen breads, a dozen yogurts, a dozen or more cheese choices, plus citrus, melons, dates, apricots, nuts, etc. And that doesn’t count the waffle, pancake and omelet bar. The standout favorite to try is the hand pressed oranges. There are pictures of Don and/or Jon squeezing their own OJ drinks.
This morning as we gathered on the bus for our morning thought, I shared my struggle with sleeplessness since we left home and my frustration with some other things that have compounded my fragileness. I read 1 Peter 1: 6-8 about rejoicing in tribulation and showed them my Bible art journal for the day we left home. It was a picture of a hand in heaven supplying pretty gifts, each tied with a heart-shaped bow. There was a little girl cartoon at the bottom of the page, dancing with excitement for the gifts. However, the gift boxes were labeled with the words: “delays,” “disappointments,” “inconveniences,” “trials,” and “testings.” The little girl had the name “Rejoice” written across her front. I shared that I felt like the Lord was reminding me to be like the little girl even if I felt like I was losing my grip on things.
The first day was to set a foundation for understanding the present history of the state of Israel. We continued that theme with one more visit today –to the Atlit Detention Camp where the Jewish “illegal immigrants” were detained in barbed wire enclosures during the 1940’s when they were caught trying to immigrate to Israel without a “white paper” invitation certificate.
Other events today were Caesarea by the Sea, eating in a Druze village, visiting the Nazareth precipice where Jesus avoided an angry crowd, and our drive to the Sea of Galilee where we will spend three nights.
The city and harbor were built under Herod the Great during c. 22–10 BC near the site of a former Phoenician naval station known as Stratonos pyrgos (Στράτωνος πύργος). It later became the provincial capital of Roman Judea, Roman Syria Palaestina and Byzantine Palaestina Prima provinces. The city was populated throughout the 1st to 6th centuries CE and became an important early center of Christianity during the Byzantine period, but was mostly abandoned following the Muslim conquest of 640. It was re-fortified by the Crusaders, and finally slighted by the Mamluks in 1265.
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