Beginnings

Well, I officially leave in 5 days. It still doesn’t feel real yet. I think I’ve lived in the ‘I’m going to Jerusalem’ la la land for the past few months, and haven’t really paused to think that it’s actually almost here. No matter how close it gets though, I don’t think it will feel like reality till I get onto that plane. That is, after all the goodbyes I’m dreading are done. 

 
So, I get on a plane on Tuesday afternoon. I will be traveling with Stephen Eising and Natalie Cooper, two fellow students of Kuyper College who will be spending the semester in Jerusalem as well. We are making a trip out of the first leg of travel by spending 10 days in Europe. We are splitting that time between Edinburgh, Scotland and London, England. It will be quite the experience for me because we will be living out of our backpacks and staying in hostels for the entirety of our time there. After that, it’s on to Tel Aviv, and then a sherut to Jerusalem will bring me to my home for the next 4 months. 
 
Even talking about it, it doesn’t seem like that’s what I’m going to be doing next week! Since I was a little kid, I’ve always wanted to go to London, and it’s crazy to think that I’m going to be there in less than a week. It amazes me that God has given me this opportunity to see these places and have this experience, and I am grateful for a God that knows the desires of my heart and provides the funds for this dream to actually be feasible! I think what I am most excited for is the chance to learn the Bible and about God in a completely different place; a location that is filled with history of God’s people. To learn the Old Testament and then take field trips to where it happened is going to be magnificent. I strive to absorb as much information as I can and return home with a different perspective not only of the world but of my faith. 
 
I’m really dreading saying goodbye, but you know what, it’s not goodbye, it’s just see you later. These 4 months are going to fly by, and before I know it I’ll be back home in the States. But I want to make sure that I don’t let the experience be tainted by homesickness or worry. I made a  New Years Resolution to revolve my year around one word: content. That means I will be content to be away from the people I love, because I am in for the experience of my life. I will be content to be in a culture that I am unfamiliar with, a place that is constantly in the news and can be a bit scary, and a place where I know no one besides the two that I am traveling with. 
 
So I ask for you all to keep me in your prayers, not only for safety but that I would have open eyes and ears to what God is going to teach me and show me while I am there, and that my heart and attitude will be forever changed by the people I meet, places I see, and experiences I have. 
 
More posts will be coming once I actually arrive, and I will be sure to post pictures of my travels! 
 
Shalom, 
Liz
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