Saturday, January 15, 2011


Weeky Portion:  Exodus 13:17 thru Exodus 17:16

Kvetching, whining, complaining, whatever we call it, it's what many of us do when we are uncomfortable.  Israelite sojourners complained about safety, thirst,  hunger, thirst (again) all during the first leg
of their journey leaving Egypt.

I've been whining this week:  Constant noise, hitting my head on the bunk bed, lack of privacy and finding no control over my environment has nearly sent me over the edge.  In crazier moments I've walked out the gate here on the top of Mount Carmel and looked for a hiding place, maybe just a cup of coffee in silence.  As the Grinch complained, it's "the noise, Noise, NOISE!"  We've been sharing space here with 30 African women and children, 15 or so volunteers and staff, staying with my husband in a 16' by 16' room.

A new friend from England loaned me a book last week.  It's written by Judy Pex, who chronicles an incredible trek she made with her husband along the Israel Trail - from the southern-most city of Eilot to Mount Herman in the northeast. The couple owns a hostel in Eilot, a city on the Red Sea where my husband and I have long wanted to visit.

Monday morning, with the tension building here, I called for a reservation at their Shelter.  "Totally booked", Jeff replied to my request. "Call back in a couple of days, because we could get cancellations", he advised.

Wednesday, now desperate to move on, I got on my knees and prayed before making another phone call to Eilot.  "Let's see," said Jeff, counting aloud the room numbers and expected guests.  I'm on hold, really believing God understands how anxious I am, NEEDING some peace and quiet. 
NOW, please!

It took a few minutes, but Jeff was able to find us a room for five nights, beginning tomorrow (Sunday)!  I just about cried.  Cheering to God in thanks, I rushed to tell my husband the good news.

We are heading to Eilot tomorrow.  Six hours on the bus will take us through the Negev Desert and
to the Red Sea.

God's Torah is getting personal!

 Cloud and fire directed the Israelites to the Red Sea, then God parted the waters for them to cross. 

Five weeks of 'boot camp' - clouds and fire!  

Israel is a hard country, with tough people.

Stripped of my expectations about this leg of our journey, I'm beginning to understand what my friend predicted back in early September, when she said, "Kathryn, you will never be the same."

God has stretched and grown us in unexpected ways.  

Kvetching has happened.. 

It doesn't mean we aren't VERY grateful for new friendships, hard work, stronger faith, the journey.

God said to Moses, "Quit praying and get the people moving!"  Don't you just love that?

It's time to get moving.

Shabbat Shalom.

Thanks for reading Saturday Chores!

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