Compass Trip to Israel

I just returned from a trip to Israel, and I’m waiting right now for that next-day 3:00pm jet lag feeling to hit. Just a few more minutes, I think. I took 1300 pictures; I plan on posting a few of them in the next couple of weeks with my thoughts.

But before I do that, I want to put in a plug for Bill and Susie of Compass.org who organized a flawless Mediterranean cruise to the Holy Land sites. Transportation, food, and stimulating bible studies were all provided so all we had to do is show up, eat and pray.

Before we booked this trip, I searched the web for reviews of Compass. I didn’t find many, which is a shame since they’re approaching 50 trips to Israel. So here’s a plug for this fine organization.

Dreams

Last year I traveled more than usual. I mean, I traveled a lot. I paid Italian income taxes, and the Customs agents at Schipol Airport know me by name.

And when I started traveling, I stepped down from teaching bible study at my church. They have this weird rule that if you’re not there, you’re not allowed to teach.

But last night I had a dream. You know that dream almost everybody has that they’re just arrived in their university class and they didn’t study for the test? I had that dream, except I showed up to teach but I hadn’t studied. The topic was on ‘Trust’ and I was going to have to wing it.

I think that means it’s time to volunteer again.

God Satisfies

It’s a rainy Monday, Labor Day afternoon. I’m reading, surfing, playing, working, whatever I feel like. If only every day could be like this – spend a couple of hours working, then when you feel like it, see what’s going on in the Texans kicking team, checking movie schedules, writing a snooty email to a vendor.

But in my surfing – and I still know how I got here, I clicked here then here then here – I came across a paragraph that stopped me. Enough to make my first post in over a month, too.

When I am lonely, I ultimately want God. When I am sad, only God can bring true joy. When I am afraid, it points me to the promises of God. When I feel rejected, unwanted, unloved, alone, in all these needs, God alone will bring true and lasting peace.

But, when I’m hungry, I want a cheeseburger and some fries.

We turn to God when we are emotional or spiritually hungry. When in the pits of despair, many of us have learned to turn to God to sustenance that only He can provide.

But when it comes to our bodies, well, hey, that’s different. That’s my body to do with as I please. It’s mine, I tell you.

God has bigger plans for all of us. Most of those plans sit unused while we whine to God for Him to open a door for us. But time after time in the bible, God shows His will by guiding His ceation, not by pushing His creation. Take a look at Joshua 3:1-17 sometime; the Levites were to cross the river Jordan. But God had the priests step into the river first, then God stopped the water. God is there, but faith and trust in Him often requires *us* to open the door. Trust me, God will let me know if I’ve opened the wrong door.

Our bigger plans are often thwarted because we don’t trust God to meet those physical needs. We’re good with giving Him our fears and loneliness and pain – or at least, sometimes we are – but when it comes to physical needs – intimacy, hunger, a job – well, we’ll handle that ourselves, thank you very much.

I cansee where I’ve taken control of my own life, and I resolve to do better to trust in God to meet all needs, not just pick and choose needs that God is allowed to have. He knows better than I what I need, it’s time to trust in Him to provide.