April 8, 2019
On February 1, 2018, I learned that as a result of an essay I wrote I had been selected to receive a scholarship to Jerusalem University College to participate in the Historical and Geographical Settings of the Bible class. I couldn’t believe the news, I was ecstatic and very thankful for this amazing opportunity. The crazy thing was God used a man whose writing skills were at best “suspect” for such an incredible assignment. All of my life I wanted to travel to Jerusalem to learn from instructors in the Holy Land. I never thought I could afford to go to seminary, and I definitely didn’t think I would get the chance to fulfill this once in a lifetime trip to Israel.
What I have learned through this experience was that God was and is able to use anyone to accomplish his purpose. This Kairos Project, as well as the trip to Jerusalem, has been a blessing to me. Previously I had convinced myself that seminary was unnecessary and unfruitful. I am delighted to say that this program and trip has been life changing and God honoring. I quickly have come to understand that there is so much that I don’t know, but “you don’t know what you don’t know!” My life has been enriched in ways I never thought possible. The curriculum in Jerusalem was not easy, I honestly thought I was going to fail the class. Once again, the grace of God prevailed in my life. We worked at least 10-14 hours a day, plus nightly study for the weekly exams and final. We walked and climbed a minimum of 5+ miles a day. Some of the hikes stretched my body in ways it had not experienced in quite some time.
My greatest take away from the trip was the physical evidence that substantiates the truth of scripture. There is no greater proven historical truth known to man than that of the veracity of the Word of God. I was privileged to learn the history and geography of God reaching out to Israel, his chosen people that would ultimately bless the world through Jesus, the seed of Abraham. Geography, archeology, and text are the three types of evidence that are used to prove the validity of history. To touch, see, and experience this in the “Land in Between” changed the way I read scripture and how I communicate the gospel. Thank you to the anonymous scholarship donor, Sioux Falls Seminary, and the academic scholars and staff of Jerusalem University College for the opportunity of a lifetime.