Today we went to Chorazin, Sepphoris, and Acre/Akko. I can’t remember anything too interesting about Chorazin, but Sepphoris had a lot of nice mosaics on the floors of old homes. There is even one called the Mona Lisa of the Middle East. Acre was my favorite today because it wasn’t just one site, it was a whole Crusader city! Inside the fortress was a lot of big vaulted ceilings and columns, which I loved. Then we just got to walk through the whole city and along the sea wall. There is just something about the Mediterranean Sea that I love so much! Everytime I see it, it becomes more beautiful to me. There were a lot of fishermen out on the wall, and it was quite picturesque. Another highlight of the day: got a Magnum bar at the end. I don’t think I’ve blogged about the Magum obsession that our JC group has, but it’s a little ridiculous. It all started in Turkey when Papa Hunts would get one of these Magnum ice cream bars at literally EVERY SINGLE stop. So naturally we all followed suit. Now, the rating of a site is based on whether or not they have Magnum bars for sale. The Nok Out brand is also acceptable, but not quite as good. My personal non-Magnum favorite is this cookie ice cream sandwich because the cookie is like a chocolate oatmeal one, and it’s soft! (It’s hard to find good soft cookies here) You can tell that we have all become connoisseurs of ice cream bars here, since I just spent as much time talking about ice cream as I did about the entire day’s field trip. I have my priorities.
My very favorite part of the day was in the evening when we had separate class bonfires. It was a little more of a serious fireside with musical numbers and a message from Brother Harper. The first musical number was a group singing “He Sent His Son.” It’s a Primary song, but the lyrics are so strong and truly testify of Christ and his mission on earth. I love the last lines of the the song: “What does He ask? Live like His Son.” It’s so simple, but so profound. Brother Harper then gave a message about Christ walking on the water. It was so thrilling to talk about this amazing miracle and be sitting at the edge of the water where it happened. He posed the same question to us as Christ did to Peter: “Where is your faith?” It really made me think about how strongly I need to place my faith in Christ alone and not worry about the thoughts of men. But also, and maybe more importantly, even when I fail in my faith, if I cry out, Christ will always be there to reach out His hand and pull me out of the water. I love that. It gives me so much hope and comfort that my Savior is always there for me, even though I definitely don’t deserve it. Afterwards, Rivkah sang the song “His Hands”, which if you are not familiar with, I strongly recommend looking it up on YouTube or something. It’s a beautiful song about the works Christ did with his hands and how he showed us what we must do as well. It was especially touching to me this time because the ending phrase of the chorus is “I will make my hand like those from Galilee.” Hey, we’re in the Galilee...cool! It’s little references and things like this that really stick out to me and remind me of the spectacular opportunity I have to be here and learn about my Savior. After the song, we just stayed around the fire and people had the opportunity to bear their testimonies of their belief in Christ and God and the gospel. It was such an edifying experience to hear my classmates and friends share their love of Jesus and how they have come to believe and know. It was such a beautiful evening with a beautiful spirit and feeling as we sat right on the beach of the Sea of Galilee under the stars.