Tag Archive | Inspiration

Friday Favorites #1 – Blogs

I would like to take some time here to acknowledge some folks.

I’ve been blogging since 2012.

The comments and likes and follows have been sporadic to non-existent.

But I found out a couple of things.

If I post it; someone will read it; my consistency has changed.

I have learned so much from reading, commenting, liking and following people.

Some of whom I agree with; and yes, even some who share a totally different world view than I have.

I would like to give a shout out to some which I have learned the most from and/or enjoyed the most.

Please go read support, comment, like and follow them as you would like.

Here are four for you to begin with –

I hope you enjoy them too! (More next Friday!)

And oh, thanks for reading!

Too much of a good thing; Pit Falls, and Pit Bulls.

The most important part of a painful conversation is the conclusion that comes from it.

Allow me to briefly explain.

Recently I was told that I was no longer jovial, or fun; that I was different than I was before.

How that exchange came up, or the pain it caused me is not important. At least not here.

The most important parts of any conversation, are both perception, and and process.

Perception involves;

  • Who said it?
  • Why did they said it?
  • What did they really mean?
  • True motivation of the speaker. Period.

Process involves;

  • Is what they said true?
  • Do I need to take it literally?
  • If it’s false; how do I handle it?
  • If it’s true; how do I handle that?

Back Story

Through childhood trauma, and the passing of my mother in 2001, I spent much of my time recovering from a form of PTSD/depression.

God’s Word, the Holy Bible was instrumental as a foundation for my healing.

It taught me to seek out solitude, and gave me steps to begin changing my thought patterns , and learn to avoid the pitfalls of a too painful life.

Reading Susan Cain’s book, Quiet; The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, (https://amzn.to/33esZWt) gave me an inside look on the real me.

I found that enjoying being alone, was actually quite normal for some folks; and that for me it can actually be revitalizing.

Through reading her material, I was free of the guilt brought on by withdrawing, and began to embrace the quietness, and thus thrust my healing light years ahead of where I was.

Then about two years ago, we had to put our little Cairn Terrier to sleep.

He was to be our forever dog, and at age four, became to ill to be fixed.

I swore off ever having another dog.

The pain of his passing, brought back memories of the pain from my mom’s passing, and without my really noticing it – I was again enveloped in depression.

Withdrawing further and further into my own bubble, using my new knowledge of “Quietude” as an excuse.

Well, a mentor of mine says that even a GOOD thing carried to excess, can become a BAD thing; a burden.

So it was with solitude.

So back to present day, and that PERCEPTION thing;

  • Was what I was being told true? Probably yes.
  • Why did they say it? Most likely because now MY pain, was causing THEM pain.
  • What did they really mean? PLEASE figure this thing out so you can stop being so miserable.
  • True motivation? No matter how rough their comments came out, they really only have my best interest at heart.

So how about that PROCESS part?

The evening of that fight was difficult; my heart was dark with pain.

But the following morning, I got up and in solitude, prayed my favorite prayer of all; “God, please tell me the truth.”

  • Was what they said true? Unfortunately, yes. I had been increasingly sullen over the past several months.
  • Should I take their pleas literally? Yes of course. Even though I was not seeing any issues, they were; and it was causing them much inner turmoil.
  • Was it false? No. Since it was not false, it could not be ignored, unless of course change was not something I wanted. (To be clear – I NEVER want to cause someone pain!)
  • So is it true? Yes. Oh God. Tell me what to do. Tell me the truth, and help me to hear it.

Almost immediately, a random thought, of a random conversation with a random friend came to mind.

A conversation about her dog.

She lives alone, and has a large dog that not only keeps her company, but keeps her safe in her ever changing neighborhood.

I of course balked at this random idea, but as I considered her story (boy did she have some stories!) it became clear that perhaps a new dog may be helpful.

It would REQUIRE me to get out of my bubble a bit, and also keep me company.

Always a fan of the “bully breeds”, I began a search for Pit Bulls.

The day we went to see, and maybe pick up the one I wanted at a shelter a couple of towns away, he was sent away to a different home.

Sad, but no harm, no foul.

That night, a friend I’ve known for forty years, placed a video of a dog she knew of who needed to be re-homed – his owner was just too busy to care for him, and he was tied in the yard to a tree most of the time.

His owner was agreeable to us taking him off her hands.

We picked him up the very next day.

All of the problems we could have had with another dog or puppy, are non existent.

He is however making me get up, move about, and TALK.

I don’t know how it will all end, but I’m feeling a bit happier, a little lighter, and glad to have been able to help out a pup in need in the process.

So. All that to say this; Ask God to tell you the truth.

Listen even when it seems random.

He’s here to help.

Oh, and just a note, the pit bull I wanted? Through no fault of his own brought back to the shelter this a.m. Imagine that.

Enjoying his new digs.

See you next time!

Israel 2019 – Final Installment

Our crew. Bus #7.

Here we stand, in this devastatingly beautiful land, all together, our tour nearing and end.

It was at this spot that all ten buses joined at once for the Watchman on the Wall commissioning.

Hats off to Gate 1 Travel. https://www.gate1travel.com/.

The logistics of ten very full buses seeing the same things, all at different times on the same day, is mind boggling!

Any way,

Watchmen on the Wall are taught about Israel’s history in depth, and are trained to pray for all things Jerusalem.

—————————————

Flight time – 15:30 – Check.
Our final view of Tel Aviv
The fountain was in the sky light!

Our flight from Tel Aviv was perfect.

We flew to Barcelona.

Waiting for our flight to Chicago (With airplane mode on to avoid roaming fees) and unaware of the fact that we were being rerouted through somewhere else, we totally missed our gate.

Here we were in Barcelona, we only speak English. Zero Spanish, trying to figure out our next move.

With exhaustion and frustration, we did our best not to argue. It was tough.

Then a ladies voice comes from behind us.

“I speak some Spanish. Can I help you? Where are you going?”

Believe it or not, she was going to Chicago as well!

Same gate. Different time. Thank you God!

She went to speak to someone, came back, and told us how we could book another flight.

Needless to say, we were in the wrong, wrong, place, at the wrong, wrong time, (we thought) and somehow, like He is known to do, God turned things around for us.

Oh what a story this photo tells!

The flight from Barcelona to Chicago of course was long (ten hours) and we did not get to sit together on the plane, but we were both grateful to have a seat on that plane, and be homeward bound.

Of course when we landed in Chicago, it was far too late for the scheduled flight for the last leg of our journey.

So the airline provided us with a hotel voucher, so that we could sleep, food vouchers, so we would not starve, and transportation vouchers so we could get back and forth from the hotel to the airport.

We used our first transportation voucher to get to our provided hotel, WHICH HAD NO ROOMS, there was literally no room at the inn.

Voucher number two took us right back to the airport, and to the customer service desk, to find out just what were were going to need to do.

The gal was so sweet and helpful.

After regaling her with our story, she looked at her screen, and said “Oh look what just popped up!”

A room had JUST opened up at the O’Hare Hilton. (At 10:30 at night?)

A simple ten minute walk from where we stood.

The photo above is the view from our forth floor window.

We even had some extra time to get to our flight home in the morning.

There is a moral to this story, a punch line, a promise.

God never once tells us in His word that things will be easy.

In fact sometimes, things can be down right frustrating.

But His promise, is that if we trust Him, He will always care for us.

Scripture says clearly;

No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper. Isaiah 54:17 (ASV)

Note; It does not say that there won’t be weapons, it says they will not prosper.

So we ended up home, safe, exhausted, and forever changed.

My hope is that you enjoyed your virtual tour to Israel. If you did, then please feel free to share the following link; https://significantencounters.com/2019/09/21/home-again/ This is where it all begins.

Thank you so much for travelling with me.

I hope to see you next time, for something new and different.

Day #8 – Our Last Tour Day

This was my favorite day I think.

But it’s so hard to choose.

Visiting Joppa was more than I expected.

It took us a while to get there.

Even though it was the hottest day on our tour – we enjoyed it very much. (Thank God for well air conditioned buses on our return!)

But first …………….

Yitzhak Rabin Memorial
https://mfa.gov.il/mfa/aboutisrael/state/pages/yitzhak%20rabin.aspx
German Colony in Haifa
https://www.touristisrael.com/haifas-german-colony/4998/
Note the places for the kiddos to play and the adults to rest in the lower right hand corner. Sweet.
An outdoor bowling alley!
Who knew? Hey lady! Get off the lane!
A view of the new places, from the middle of the old places.

We saw these buildings from all angles in our travels – now here on the ground we could see their size!

We all really wondered about that twisty one!

Worldwide Center for the Baha’i Faith – Haifa
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terraces_(Bah%C3%A1%27%C3%AD)

Jaffa, City in Israel – Description -Jaffa, in Hebrew Yafo and in Arabic Yaffa and also called Japho or Joppa, the southern and oldest part of Tel Aviv-Yafo, is an ancient port city in Israel. Wikipedia

This explains the discrepancy in spellings and pronunciations.

Old Joppa
Slow ascent.
Market Square
Made me smile. Want a ride?
Going up!
These three photos
Are where I pictured
Jesus’ life would be.
Ra’amses Gate Garden
Palm trees everywhere.
HaPisga Garden
Tirosh Amphitheater
St. Peter’s Cathedral
Jaffa Port
Did I mention it was hot?
Dare I say; The old man and the sea?
Inside a restaurant we ate in.
It was cool in more ways than one.
Another wall for free.
Busy Joppa street.

Shalom Tower

Tower in South City Centre (Tel Aviv)

This huge tower, the first skyscraper in Israel opened in 1965, is one of Tel Aviv’s major landmarks and a notable part of its skyline. It has permanent exhibits on the history of Tel Aviv in the foyer and on the 1st floor.

We listened to a guide that knew so many facts, had so much knowledge, and was funny to boot – It was hard to keep up.

We also got to see about twenty minute long documentary about Israeli/Tel Aviv history.

Our guide.
Exhibits
If you are a history buff, this is your place.

To find out what all those displays (and our guide) are talking about, you can click here; https://israelforever.org/programs/myherzl/who_was_theodor_herzl/

Our day of touring, our week in fact, was over, and we headed back to our hotel in Herzilya in time to visit the beach on the Mediterranean Sea.

Palms by the sea.

We stayed at a brand new hotel in Herzilya called Herod’s.

Closer and closer to the Mediterranean.

Just a ten minute walk to the sea.

Sun shiny ribbons on the sea.
Refreshing.
Beautiful.
Soothing.
Restful.

Sea wall.

It was much more than a ten minute walk when you decide to walk along the sea wall.

This is the actual sea wall, and the place we stayed, click here if you want to know more; https://econcretetech.com/seawall-units-herzliya-marina/

Aerial photo found on Google.

Our room was in the far left horseshoe shaped building.

Surfers, not sharks.
One last look back.

That’s it for now – but next time I will just share some random photos – neighborhoods, plants, walls, buildings and such.

About two more posts for our trip to Israel, I hope you’re enjoying them.

I hope to see you again next time.

Day #6 – Israel

Gai Beach, Tiberias, Israel

Good morning from the Sea of Galilee. 6:49 AM.

This is my favorite photo from our trip.

It was so peaceful, and minus the modern embellishments, is a view that my Jesus saw a lot of.

Tiberias – by the Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee

The Sea of Galilee is essentially a large lake.

There is no Hebrew word for lake.

So it’s a sea.

http://jesusboats.com/

We were on the Sea of Galilee with ten of these “Jesus Boats”, where we all locked together and had a worship service, along with some Hebrew dancing before departing.

Quiet seas.

It was easy in some spots on our cruise to imagine Jesus walking across the water to one of these little boats containing some very concerned Apostles.

Close to the end of our trip.

We hated leaving the boats; but there was so much to see.

On to the Mt. of Beatitudes
Appropriate attire required for entry.
The view from here
Speaks for itself.
Breathtakingly restful.

Capernaum is next.

The walk to Capernaum.
Excavated synagogue close to Peter’s home.
Inside excavated synagogue close to Peter’s home.
Peter’s Home

Peter’s home – What you see above is a new synagogue built above it.

I had difficulty getting great photos here; so you can follow the next link if you want to see more clearly.

https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/biblical-sites-places/biblical-archaeology-sites/the-house-of-peter-the-home-of-jesus-in-capernaum/

Jesus resting?

This statute was close to the entry to Capernaum.

Made of black stone. Note the nail holes in the feet.

The view of the Sea of Galilee from outside of Capernaum.

Onward to lunch!

Choose one.
So not used to having my food stare at me!

This was so far out of my comfort zone!

But I ate it any way.

I was surprised at how good it was – Seconds?

Boat Museum – Ginosar, Israel
The Big Question
Great care was taken to keep the keel of this boat in tact.
Next stop – Magdala
An amazing archaeological find, actual floor tile.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magdala
So much has been revealed.
Exciting to think that Mary of Magdalene walked here.

As we head down the pathway from this spot, we come to Duc In Altum.

Which means “Out into the deep”

https://www.magdala.org/visit/duc-in-altum/womens-atrium/

In this atrium, we all stood circling this fountain.

We all began to sing (Sadly I can’t remember what song) and as we all moved to the center, the sound seemed to fill the hall.

It was amazing.

We were surrounded by pillars.
Each with the name of an important woman from the Bible carved into it.
https://www.magdala.org/visit/duc-in-altum/boat-chapel/
https://www.magdala.org/visit/duc-in-altum/encounter-chapel/

This room, the Encounter Chapel, struck my companions and I perhaps more than anywhere else we visited.

We stayed here in silence for several prayerful moments before leaving with very quieted hearts.

Just one more stop today –

https://www.israeljerusalem.com/yardenit.htm

The Yardenit is the baptismal site located on the Jordan River.

I have no photos of my own from this site, as I was busy getting re-baptized myself.

That’s it for today’s tour.

I’m exhausted.

How about you?

Please join me next time for Day # 7.

Day #4- Israel

Day #4 officially began our “Tour Days”.

The next few posts will be more photos and less words.

I’ll caption whatever I can; if you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Enjoy.

Jewish cemetery from the Mt. of Olives.

The cemetery goes the entire distance around the Mt. of Olives.

The Dome of the Rock from the Mt. of Olives.

Our guide told us that the Dome of the Rock is essentially a large tombstone with no one buried inside.

The Dome of the Rock is built on top of the Foundation Stone, which is sacred to both Jews and Muslims.

The Golden Gate from the Mt. of Olives.

On our trip around the city, we saw all of the gates.

The Golden Gate

I wish I had had more time to learn about them all.

I see a new study in my future.

Garden f Gethsemane entry.

A bell rings and the gate is opened every half hour by a Monk.

Only a certain amount are allowed in at once – six?

Garden of Gethsemane exit.
To Mt. Zion
To King David’s Tomb
King David’s Tomb

There is a men’s side, and a women’s side.

My husband took this photo – with his head covered.

Room of the Last Supper

It is believed that a room like this was used for the last supper.

IDF ending their maneuvers next to the walls of Mt.Zion.
Walking along one of the walls of Mt. Zion.
One view from Mt. Zion
The remains of King David’s stables

Being in this place, around the wall, and inside the wall was a dream come true for me.

Enter – The Western Wall
The Western Wall – The women’s side
The Western Wall – The men’s side
Door to the upper prayer room at the Western Wall
Prayer room in the top corner of the Western Wall

There were people praying in here; but I didn’t photo them, just the ceiling portion.

Walking away from the Western Wall

We were sad to leave, but had much more to see on that day.

Here’s our sign.
In the tomb garden
Walking in the tomb garden
Door to the tomb
Inside the tomb

Bodies were allowed to stay in the tombs for one year.

The bones were then removed so that the tomb could be used again.

Passing by a set up for a city festival day.

This area is being set up for a city wide festival, many bands at the same venue.

The cool thing is that there are maybe six places all around that have this event at the same time.

They know how to party!

I hope you enjoyed this tour of Day #4.

I hope you’ll join me again next time for Day #5.

Day #1 – Jerusalem

The sun comes up over Jerusalem.

Let the journey begin.

Did I mention we were waking up in Jerusalem?

View of Jerusalem – from the Dan Hotel

Every year Aglow International (https://www.aglow.org/) has an enormous conference somewhere in the continental United States.

This year it was decided that that meeting would take place in Israel, in Jerusalem.

Called a “Holy Convocation*”, as many as could, joined on site, while others partook via livestream, a little closer to their homes.

No words.

It was quite overwhelming to see this land that God has always loved so much.

Worship with around 850 of our closest friends.

We came to praise and worship God, and to fellowship with like minded individuals.

Our hearts and our purpose, bring us together as one; as Family.

Words of encouragement from our leader Jane Hansen Hoyt.

Jane’s words are both powerful and encouraging.

Her love for Christ is evident in the way she acts, speaks, and conducts business.

She is not afraid to listen for what God is saying for Aglow, herself and for Israel.

(https://www.aglow.org/about-us/president-ceo)

Our day began with Jane speaking in the morning.

Seconded by a bus ride back to our own hotel for a jet lag ridden nap.

In the evening we were back at the Dan Hotel, for more praise and worship, and a riveting message by Asher Intrater.

(https://www.jewishvoice.org/taxonomy/term/1978)

(https://www.reviveisrael.org/about-us/)

The bus ride back to our hotel did not seem as long since we had already traveled it once.

And we would travel it many times before our three days of convocating were finished.

And that my friend, is a story in itself.

Hope to see you next time.

*Convocation = 1.a large formal assembly of people. 2.the action of calling people together for a large formal assembly.