During our month in Jerusalem, we’ve spent almost seventy hours at Succat Hallel. We’ve done a lot of other things too, but this is what we came for. It’s been an extraordinary blessing, and we’ve also gotten a lot of exercise since it’s a half hour walk to get there.
Quite by accident, we have been here at the time of the Elav Young Adult and Youth Conference. Elav was an enormous faith undertaking for those involved in the ministry here, and for us, it was a privilege to be a little part of it by praying and fasting. About 800 young adults and youth–Jewish, Arab, and international–came together in TelAviv for Elav, and we believe it will have great long-term effects.
We’ll miss Succat Hallel, partly because such great things are happening. We’ve heard for years about the “back to Jerusalem” belief in the rapidl- growning church of China. Next month, a group of Christian leaders will come from China for three months of study at Succat Hallel. Some of these people lead networks of up to a million Christians.
We’ve learned a lot, but there’s so much more to learn. Right now, Rick and Patty Ridings, the couple that founded Succat Hallel, are meeting with leaders in Turkey. There are big changes taking place in Turkey right now, and we would love to know what is happening within the churches there. There’s a budding revival among Arab youth in Nazareth, which we would like to know more about. We have learned a bit about Messianic Jewish congregations and have learned a lot from their teachings, but we didn’t get to visit any of them.
People keep coming from all over the world to worship and pray. Tonight we heard the story of a Texan, who was drunk or stoned every day for twenty-eight years, and then Jesus stepped into his life. He’s been to many nations and has won thousands of people to faith in Jesus. Now his ministry is in the ancient city of Jericho where he ministers to Arab Muslims, and he has started a house of prayer there.
One of the most interesting and inspiring things we have learned is that houses of prayer, many of them 24/7 are springing up all overthe globe. A new one is starting in Beirut, Lebanon. There’s one in Alexandria, Egypt. They’re starting in Turkey and all over the Middle East. This is a huge phenomenon that we knew nothing about until we visited International House of Prayer in February.
Tonight we also heard the story of two people from Bethlehem who have converted from Islam to Christianity. Both of them have been driven from their homes and families and their lives have been threatened. We prayed for their protection, their future, and their families.
So, Jerusalem is still fascinating. We’re so thankful for the wonderful experiences we’ve had, especially the phenomenal worshp at Succat Hallel. We’ll look forward to our next trip here, but our big house at home will look pretty good after this one-room apartment. And we can’t wait to wrap our arms around Sophie and Sam.