Next Year in Jerusalem
Two years ago at this very moment, I closed my laptop, loaded it into my backpack, and headed to NYC to prepare for one of the greatest experiences of my life. I had been selected to participate in an ecumenical pilgrimage to the Holy Land. On the steps of St. Bart's, I met up with an Episcopalian, 2 Presbyterians, a Southern Baptist, a Lutheran, and a rapper named SaulPaul-- it sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, doesn't it?
My weeks in Jerusalem changed my life. It's hard to describe because I've blogged and written so much about the experience, but words have never seemed to fully capture the impact and significance of that trip. I just spent a few minutes reading back over my online travel journal and re-living it. The trip is being turned into a documentary, and you can view the trailer online here.
I am now a big proponent of pilgrimage. It's a spiritual growth opportunity that the evangelical church needs to support and facilitate. Personally, I can't wait to get back over there. At the Jewish Passover Seder, the participants declare "next year in Jerusalem" to signify their hope and desire to return to the Promised Land and their prayers for the coming of the Messiah. I echo that hope and prayer-- "next year in Jerusalem"-- as I wait expectantly and excitedly for my next trip to the Holy Land and desire to introduce people to Jesus the Messiah in his homeland.