As I prepared for a 10-day journey to Israel, to take place the first two weeks of the official Christmas season, I grumbled a bit inside. After all, why was this trip at this time? It’s stressful enough to try to get everything extra done in December, without “losing” 10 days (plus the days it takes to get over jet lag!) I made up my mind that I’d not do another trip at this time of year. That was before . . .
Before I set foot on the land.
Before I saw the Jezreel Valley (also known as the Valley of Armageddon).
Before I experienced the Father’s heartbeat for His beloved Jews as they weep before the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem.
Before I wandered near the edge of the Sea of Galilee in Capernaum, right where Jesus was.
Before I saw the rock on which it is believed He sat as He blessed the 5 loaves and 2 fish before the miraculous multiplication took place. Before I walked the very road Jesus traveled as He headed to Jerusalem with the crowds shouting, “Hosanna!” Before I knelt on the floor of the dungeon in which my Jesus was kept overnight at Caiaphas’ house before His crucifixion.
Before I sat on the steps of the temple – the very ones where Jesus would have sat and taught.
Before . . . I saw that empty garden tomb!
My mind has been turned upside down because of this trip. Now I can think of nothing better for this time of year than to be in the land of Israel, interacting with the people, Messianic and non-believer. Now I can complete the important things of this season – truly, not everything we do is really that important – in the fullness of Christ and His peace. Truly, Christmas is all in the heart.