"Now after these things were accomplished, Paul resolved in the Spirit to go through Macedonia and Achaia, and then the Jerusalem. He also said, 'After I go there, I must also go see Rome,'"
I remember the first time I went to Israel, one of the retired pastors at Trinity UMC in Las Vegas said to me, "Michael, your understanding of the Bible will never be the same. You will see the dedication early believers had and when you think about Jesus walking in Israel, you will feel more than just the touch of history, but His presence. You become a pilgrim in the lands which cradle the steps of spirituality." And he was so correct. In walking the Via Dolorosa I felt his anguish as he headed toward Golgotha. In the Upper Room we participated in a communion that connected us with thousands of years of people partaking in the sacrament. In Tabgha we stood on the banks of the Galilee and heard his call to "come follow me and I will make you fishers of humans." My journey was not just making "memories," but a pilgrimage which helped me experience God in the living of the cloud of witnesses who embodied the faithfulness of following Christ.
Paul not only followed Christ, but he traveled throughout Asia and Southern Europe bringing the Good News to communities like Ephesus, Corinth, and Rome. In his wake the church was born, and by his passion, the history of these towns would never be the same.
In October of 2016 I am inviting you to have an experience to enhance your reading of the Scriptures. The Journeys of Paul Royal Caribbean tour is an all-inclusive tour offered by Educational Opportunities (a Christian tour group leading tours for 40 years) that will start in Rome and visit Athens, Corinth, and Ephesus in its ten days on land and sea. We will read from the Scriptures and learn about Paul's successes as well as the obstacles he had to face. The itinerary will truly inspire you as you visit the places where Paul spoke of the wonders of God's love and people's lives were transformed by his Spirit.
Anne and I will be presenting an informational meeting on September 20, immediately following the 11:00 a.m. worship in the Sanctuary for all who are interested. I will answer all questions. Don't worry about the Greek money issue; we will be on the Jewel of the Seas for all accommodations. I do hope you will join us on a journey you will never forget. The Bible will never be the same after you walk in the steps of those who lived it, and in many ways, you will find yourself living it as well.
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