February 15, 2008

Another BIG DAY!!

Good evening from Jerusalem! We've made it to the House, as our guide likes to say, and so begins the final days of our time here. We continue to see God's hand with us each day and can't even begin to describe to you all the blessing it is to be here.

This morning we awoke in Galilee and packed our things to head out. After one last look at the Sea, we headed west over the mountains and down through the Valley of Jezreel. Our first stop today was Mt. Carmel - the very same place where Elijah taunted the prophets of Baal. It was a magical place as we re-told the story while overlooking the Jezreel valley (the same valley where the Bible says the battle of Armeggidon will take place). Quite something. Since Elijah made it up and down that mountain so many times, we hiked down it as well into the oldest working Olive Tree grove in Israel.

After Carmel, we made our way out to the Coastal Plains to visit Caesarea - the huge town of Herod the Great and the same port from which Paul sailed on his missionary journeys (among numerous other Biblical events). After learning about the city, we got to go touch the Mediterranean Sea! When the Romans destroyed the city in 67, they leveled it and through much of it into the sea. As we walked along the beach, pieces of marble from the city were everywhere - so we all have some to bring home for show and tell.

After Caesarea we made our way inland through the Valley of Elah to the ruins of Azekah - the very same location where David met Goliath! After learning about the history and geography of it all and the vast spiritual applications from it, we got to make our way back down into the valley to the same river where David would have picked up the 5 stones to slay Goliath. It's the only river in the valley, so there's no mistaking which one! We got some show and tell things there too. :)

Then we made our way up to Jerusalem just in time for dinner. The Sabbath began this evening, so it's been cool to observe that here in Jerusalem. The next two days we will be visiting some of the most holy places in the world! We cannot wait to share with you not only the details of where we've been, but also all that we have learned in being here.

Thanks for all of your comments - they are such an encouragement to us! Hopefully I'll make one more post tomorrow night (around 11am CST) and then that will be it until we're home!

We're all still, praise the Lord, in good health and our bodies continue to surprise us - allowing all of us to participate even through aches, pains, blisters, etc. The Lord is good!



  1. Thank you Matt for the awesome pictures! The blog has helped us "walk" with yall on this just incredible journey. Tell Claire we miss her look forward to seeing her big smile soon. God Bless!
    Cil, Marty, Connor & Chandler Stitt

  2. I certanly am enjoying the pic from our Savior's land. I pray the Holy Spirit reveal a special direction in each of your lives. Thanks Lantz family for the use of your web site. You are in our prayers.Darrell Buxton (Chase's Dad)

  3. It has been so cool seeing the pictures - thanks for taking the time to post them! Can't wait to see ya'll when you get back. Safe travel!