Flashback Friday

Thrift Schooling

Happy Friday Everyone! 

Today's Flashback goes back fourteen years. Spring had just sprung in Israel and another field trip was scheduled for our semester long class, The Land of The Bible. From day trips to Jericho, to week long excursions in villages along the Sea of Galilee, our professors jam packed us full of information not only in the classroom but during bus rides and on location at historical sites. Of course, what stands out all these years later was not so much the textbooks, tests or even the teaching, but rather the interaction with my classmates, professors and the locals.

Isn't that what life is about anyway? How we interact with one another, treat each other and love one another through the One who is love? I mean, what good is it to walk where Jesus walked if we can't walk how He walked? The sites and lessons were amazing and a memory I will treasure, but the most memorable experience deals not with so much where I was, but who I was with. 

Our travels that Spring took us across the Israeli border to the country of Jordan. Even before exiting the bus, children came running from afar in hopes that we would buy a trinket they had for sale or give them some spare change. My two friends and I excitedly made our way to view the majesty of Petra and it's surroundings. While hiking through the trails nearby, we ambitiously handed out little Arabic tracts to young sheep herders, no more than 8 or 9 years old. We hurried by eerie sites that once held idols worshiped by the inhabitants of old. We lingered on the hilltops absorbing the breathtaking, mountainous view. After our journey, we sat down to rest on some steps hewn out of stone. 

While waiting for the other students to return so we could journey to our next destination, we began singing worship songs. Nothing new. We loved to sing whether during our dorm Bible study or group worship meetings on campus or during our own personal times with the Lord. We finished singing and a small group of Arabs came over to us. I noticed a small cross hanging on one of the woman's neck. "You have no idea how much that blessed us," she said wholeheartedly. "You see, only 2% of our country is Christian and we don't hear songs like that very often." She thanked us and they moved on. A short encounter, only a few words spoken, but words that will stay with me. 

Not only should we not take for granted the power of our worship but the strength of our relationships with other believers. So many times we allow little differences, offenses or hurts get in the way of our relationships. This incident reminds me to be thankful for the Christian friends I have in this country and all across the globe. 
It helps me to not forget about the Christians in countries such as these where being a Christian is not the norm. And it reminds me to pray for them to be strengthened in their faith in places where it may not be so easy!

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