Driving around, in and out of and through Jerusalem today provided a study in contrasts. From the ruins of the Herodium to the modern classroom at Bethlehem Bible College,
from the tiny, low grotto where Christ’s birth occurred to the high-ceilinged Church of the Nativity,
from the sparseness of the West Bank to the luxury of our own hotel,
we encountered spaces, ideas and experiences vastly different from each other.
The Herodium, Herod the Great’s favorite palace/fortress, was an engineering and artistic feat. The Church of the Nativity (the oldest continuously active church in the world!) was a surprisingly inspirational place. Going through checkpoints to reach West Bank sites was sobering and saddening. It felt as if my spirit was pulled back and forth, up and down, all day.
The most memorable part of the day for me was hearing from a Bethlehem Bible College professor on being a Palestinian Christian in the Jewish homeland state of Israel. When questioned after his talk, he held nothing back in challenging Christians for ignoring, betraying and forgetting our Palestinian Christian brothers and sisters in the loss of their land, homes, and livelihood. “Each one of you can do SOMEthing,” were his final words. Not sure what that should be for me, but I do feel a call to respond. I’ll keep you posted ….