Visiting Israel

November 12, 2020 by  
Filed under Humor, Stories

By Judy Davis –

I visited Israel many years ago and I’ll never forget seeing God’s chosen land. I bought several souvenirs including slides of Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth, The Sea of Galilee, Garden of Gethsemane and other significant places in the Holy Land. As I was walking by the shops, I saw a shirt in a window. I stopped and purchased this keepsake for my sister. Across the front was written in bold letters, “I went to Israel and all I brought back for my sister was a t-shirt.”

Jerusalem was our first stop on the bus tour, then on to see the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and Dome of the Rock. We arrived in Nazareth at the home of Joseph and Mary. Can you imagine the angel Gabriel telling Mary she was going to have Jesus, the Son of God? And here I was at the very place it occurred.

We had many places to see on our tour and such a short time to visit. Another area in the Holy Land that grabbed my attention was the bridge over the Jordan River. Today many Christians are being baptized in this river. “At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan River” (Mark 1:9 NIV).

Our new youth pastor, Greg, baptized several of the youth at our church last week. In a baptismal, of course – not in a river. One teen walked out to be baptized and he stood over a foot taller than the youth minister. When Greg went to baptize him, he literally could not lift him out of the water. This incident brought much laughter from our congregation. After the baptismal service was over, our pastor walked up to the podium and said, “This alone was worth the price of admission.”

In getting back to my trip of years ago, Bethlehem, the birthplace of Christ was one of the most treasured places we visited. One of my favorite souvenirs was an olive wood nativity from Bethlehem. I recently wrote a children’s book, “The Olive Wood Manger,” and it’s full of pictures of this nativity.

After touring Bethlehem we went on a boat across the Sea of Galilee. I’ll never forget going to a restaurant on the other side and eating a delicious Saint Peter’s fish dinner. Much of the ministry of Jesus occurred on these shores.

Visiting the Garden of Gethsemane was a sight to behold. The garden is at the foot of the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. Walking where Christ walked was the highlight of this trip and a place never to be forgotten.

About Judy Davis

Judy Davis has been writing for publications since 1985, and is the author of nine books including Moments of Reflection and Inspirational thoughts for writers. She and her husband, Colin have been married for 45 years. They are retired and love to travel. You can find out more at
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