When I think about traveling to the Holy Land the image that usually comes to mind involves dirt and rocks, with the dominant color being tan.
That is not at all what it’s like around the Sea of Galilee in Tagbha.
I told someone earlier today that I didn’t realize that I was traveling to Hawaii. Granted, the temperatures this week are pretty moderate and the breezes make doing anything outside enjoyable however I had no idea that it would be so tropical, with flowering trees and shrubs everywhere, bamboo forests along the edge of the lake, and wild parrots flying through the sky. To sit on the patio here at Pilgerhaus and watch the lake is to feel like you are in a tropical paradise, with kumquat trees shedding their fruit as you drink a margarita on the veranda.
This is the heart of the farming region of Israel, we we are surrounded by orchards of all kinds, including mangos and bananas. The wheat harvest is coming in, and the fresh vegetables that we have for breakfast, lunch, and dinner are amazing.
Down by the lakeside, one is likely to run into all sorts of creatures. So far I have seen an otter come out of the Sea of Galilee and scurry off into the brush, and the local rodent called the Hyrax, which is probably kin to the groundhog or possum.
The holy sites are certainly beautiful and have their meaning, but much less than the surrounding countryside which seems to scream about the bounty of God in our midst. The wind seems alive, blowing hard and then soft, refreshing and never biting. We are surrounded by hills, and the glory of God is revealed in them.
I wish I could post some pictures to this site, but unfortunately the palm as its limits. However, if you want to check out some of the sites we’ve seen, head over to http://www.lostinwonder.ning.com for a preview.