We started out hearing a prayer/poem:
A Prayer for Standing at the Shores of lake Galilee and/or the Dead Sea by Ms. Susan Mixter Blanchard
When first birthed
from its mother rock
Each stone was sharp, jagged, unbending.
Now, eons of storms and pounding surf
Have rounded the edges,
Smoothed the surfaces.
Each stone different.
Some black, others white --
Speckled ones abound.
Many flat, more round --
Mica glitters from granite globes.
None shaped like its neighbor.
All together make the rocky beach --
A rough-hewn edge to the seat
Sparkled by the sun.
May one stone chosen from many
Be a reminder that we are each like this --
Born of the same Source.
Each is unique,
Each is being worn smooth
By the storms of life.
Together, with our various shapes,
Sizes, colors -- and our varied gifts --
We return beauty to God's world.
It was a beautiful morning, but I keep being haunted by yesterday's feelings of turning over of will. Maybe that's why the desert was so important for me this morning -- it is so vast, and so warm -- you can't fight it, you just have to give yourself over to it. You can't bend it to your will, you must bend your will to it.
We then went shopping from Hebron glass. It seemed surreal to shop after the morning and especially after yesterday. Maybe that was the good break we needed. But as with all breaks, it's back to the pilgrimage -- and walking in the way of cross -- tomorrow.
We had a good conversation with him. The pilgrims asked him question after his talk with us -- it was very worthwhile, and complimented our earlier talk by speaker on Islam in the region.
We will be up and out starting to walk the Stations of the Cross at 5:45 am tomorrow. I'll post sometime tomorrow -- I will be taking pictures, but not blogging as I go along as I have been -- it is more a time of reflection for me. What is God calling me to? Your will, Lord, not mine, be done.
More pictures from the Judean desert:
More pictures from Qumran:
More pictures from the Dead Sea: