SP True Stories: Literal gold coin provision

11 Feb

(A report from a friend)

Recently, my good friend was encouraging his friends who were struggling financially.  They got behind in their rent and were about to be evicted.  My friend told them, “Papa wants to give you a token like a gold coin to show you that He loves you.”

Twenty minutes later, (about 10 pm at night!) their ‘pre’-Christian neighbor came over and unexpectedly gave them the 1 oz gold coin in this picture! (Gold is about $1320/oz)

Then, within a few days, ‘out of the blue’, they were given $2500 from an anonymous source.

At that point, they felt an urgency to give $1000 to some ‘other friends’ who were also behind in their bills.  Their ‘other friends’ had just prayed the prayer on page 230 in the Supernatural Provision book.  A minute after they finished praying, their phone beeped, notifying them that $1000 had just been deposited in their Paypal account.

Is God good or what!?!?!

‘Supernatural Provision’ prayer:  “Jesus, I love how You were so unconventional with Peter.  I think I get it.  I think I understand what You did with Peter.  It’s way outside of the norms of my society, but it’s beginning to make sense now that I can see how good my Father is.  I have to confess that it’s still a stretch to think of these truths working in my life, but I really want Your reality to be my reality.  I want Your easy yoke.  And I want to make You really happy as You watch me just skipping around like a little child without an anxious thought about provision.  Oh, make it happen in me, Jesus; make it a reality in me!  Amen.”



SP True Story: Old car retired… new car acquired

9 Feb

Over the last couple weeks nearly 10 people have given us sizeable financial gifts.  God knew we would need it soon.  He’s so good that way!

Debbie and I made a ministry trip to the cold ‘Nordt Country’ Thursday Feb 1 through Wednesday Feb 7.  Our 2001 Accord still looked good, but it had 320,000 miles on it.  I thought it would serve us well on this trip.  Even so, as we drove out of our driveway, I said, “This will probably be the last trip with this car.”  I didn’t know how true that would be.  Without previous coolant problems, I had to unexpectedly add anti-freeze twice before we arrived in Richland Center, WI.  In addition, we realized gasoline was leaking from under the car. 

Early the next day our friend Johnny, repaired the rusted gas line leak.  It seemed that the engine may have blown a head gasket.  And as we had it up on the hoist, the water pump sprang a significant leak.  We added ‘stop leak’ to the radiator and replaced radiator cap.  That stopped the loss of water… and we found that the water pump only leaked when the engine was cold.  So we continued our trip, but had to add water before starting the car each time.  😦

We spent Saturday and Sunday with our good friends at Mel Wild’s Cornerstone Church in Prairie du Chien, WI – three great meetings with lots of help from Heaven. 

On Craigslist we found a suitable car in Sioux Falls, SD at the right price, but I couldn’t reach the owner via text, phone or email… and we wouldn’t have time to see it for two more days.

Sunday afternoon we continued to Rochester, MN to join a favorite event: a two-day Global Legacy Leaders Advance at Rod Marquette’s Destiny Church.  As usual, it was a Holy Spirit anointed time. 

Tuesday noon we decided to head for home early, just to accommodate any problems we might have with the car.  From Rochester, MN I had about 1 ½ hours of driving before we had to make a decision to turn south on I-35 to go home… or continue west on I-90 to Sioux Falls to look at the car.  Several things had to happen for us to continue to Sioux Falls.  1) The owner of the car had to answer the phone.  And he did.  I ask questions and was satisfied with car.  2)  Now we had to have cash.  We had money in the bank, but not in hand.  3) A good friend in Sioux Falls had to be home.  We called… and he was home.  4)  Would he have the cash to temporarily give us in exchange for a check from us.  He did.  He wouldn’t normally have that much money, but a medical bill hadn’t been paid yet, so it was available.  5)  The car test drive had to yield good results.  It did.  6)  We bought the car… but now we had two cars in Sioux Falls?  So we donated our old Accord to a local young man who I’ve mentored for the last 5 years.  We gave him permission to keep it and fix it… or sell it and keep the money.  He was happy to receive it.  

Each of those things were ‘make or break’ issues… but we didn’t ‘forced’ any of them to make them happen.  If any one of these issues had not happened we would have gladly accepted that divine guidance, without forcing the issue.  I really love being led by our Lord!  His ways don’t require (or allow) sweat!!  This is very much in keeping with our two-word life motto: Follow Life. (click to read more)

Interesting side note: That next morning our Sioux Falls host planned to participate in an early morn prayer session at the local House of Prayer.  He was to leave the house at 5:10 AM.  I told him that if I woke up at 4:30AM I would go with him.  I did.  We got to the prayer meeting and I thought I would just enjoy the atmosphere… but they discovered that their worship leader was sick that morning and wouldn’t be coming.  Hmmmm.  Somebody just happened to have left an acoustic guitar there… and so they asked if I would lead worship for their team.  I did.  God had a great plan for all of us!  🙂

Deb and I acquired a car and retired a car in Sioux Falls.  Then, ‘happy as a lark’, we drove to KC in our new vehicle – a 2015 Accord with only 17K miles. Nearly new!
Thank you so much, for your prayers, care and gifts… and THANKS to our over-the-top Lord!!!!


Testimony: Tears… and ‘catch a big fish’

31 Jan

A testimony from my trip to China:

A few weeks ago I joined a couple of my dear friends, Dave Clark and Jack Lee on a business trip to China.  In one of the business meetings, we all spoke to about 50 business leaders.  There were about 30 students from a nearby business university… and about 20 business people… some who were billionaires.  They were Buddhists, Daoists, atheists and a few Christians.

Dave and Jack shared the business opportunity and our values for living from the heart.  I shared about how to live with an ‘alive’ and soft heart… we must live for something bigger than ourselves… bigger than money.  I said one of those ways for our family, is to let our hearts be touched by the poor and to find ways to come alongside them.

I recounted the story of our trip to Cebu City, Philippines… to the Little Palace in Shanty-Town.  As I was telling the story I was overcome with tears… and a very discernable change occurred in the room.  The atmosphere changed from a business opportunity to a heart encounter.

Afterwards the university professor said to us, “I’ve been to many, many of these kinds of meetings but never one as meaningful as this.  Would you come back and do a 2 or 3 day seminar with my students?  I want them to learn how to live for something bigger than money.”

The power of God-tears is almost uncanny.  When we live with our hearts engaged and ‘ablaze’ with passion and God’s glory, it is infectious and revolutionary… especially to folks who have never been in touch with their hearts.

There is not a dearth of knowledge in the earth… there is a dearth of experiencing the realities of the heart.

Living for head knowledge as ‘king’, is the substitute for not knowing a satisfying reality in our hearts.  And we can’t blame the people, because they’ve never had anyone explain and model it for them.

But once their heart has been awakened… and had an encounter… they realize that living for head knowledge, is only ‘surface-y’… only ‘glitter’ that purports to be a life source.  In the end, it is quite powerless to create true happiness or true change.

After the business meeting I interviewed 6 or 8 people to see if we should visit their factory the next day.  After each interview I asked if I could take their hand and pray with them.  I felt like the Lord gave me little ‘sparks’ of special insight to pray for each of them.

At the end, a lady who had been watching, asked why we held hands.  I said, “For a sense of connection and agreement with one another.”  She asked if I could pray for her.  I did… and at the end she was VERY tender and responsive.  My translator suggested that we take the next step of leading her to Jesus.  I briefly presented Jesus and what it means to have a relationship with Him… then I led her in a simple ‘sinners prayer’.  Afterward she was very tender and exclaimed, “Something happened… I felt something change.”  Her eyes were very near tears… and mine already had tears.  We hugged… it was a wonderful God-moment.

I had not interviewed her so I didn’t know who she was, except that her name was Mrs. Cao.

The next day, we visited several clothing factories and as we walked into one large facility, there was Mrs Cao!  We eagerly and warmly greeted each other and I referenced how special our time was together.  Without hesitation she confidently and proudly announced before her associates that she had given her heart to Jesus the day before.

Well, it turns out that she was one of two owners of this factory.  And this factory is one of the main suppliers of uniforms for the airlines and military in China.

Who knew????  God did!  Sometimes you catch a big fish and don’t even know it.  And my translator even had to give me the nod to go the next step. 🙂

Thank you, God!!!!



DPM Update – 2017 Dec – Merry Christmas

24 Dec

DPM Update – 2017 Dec – Ministry trip reports

15 Dec

Dear Friends

Manila, Philippines
Our recent trip to Manila will be remembered for a long time.  We experienced more tender and tangible presence of God over an extended time, than in many years.  We co-spoke with Greg and Wendy Simas from San Jose, CA.  A couple days of sight-seeing gave us time to become good friends. 

It all started a month or so earlier, when I was getting acquainted over the phone with the leader Benji Cruz.  I told him that many times in our meetings people experience tears.  In an email the next day, he told me that he was already experiencing tears as I was talking… and that they had been praying for the gift of tears for several months (read more about tears).  Afterward he informed his team of our phone call and they all experienced tears during their staff meeting.  Hmmmm… a good God-sign to build faith for both of us, for our upcoming meetings.  

About 400 people attended the conference and each time we gathered, there were copious tender tears.  I’m confident that the hunger of their hearts attracted His presence.  And the more we talked about the goodness of our Father, the more He rested upon the four conference sessions and each of our smaller team meetings.  Since their culture tends to be a ‘father-less’ culture (fathers are in far off places earning a living for weeks, months or years at a time) it was very fitting to unveil a Heavenly Father who never leaves… and always loves… and always cares.  

The conference ended Saturday night with a 4+ hour crazy-cool fire tunnel… from 8:30PM to 1 AM.  It was a most wonderful marathon for us and the local team.  Amazingly, they waited in line… and if they were that hungry then it was our pleasure to be the conduits of Father’s love and favor to them.  Many sobbed with deep and overwhelming encounters with a good Father.  We hugged them, made declarations of acceptance and affirmation over them knowing that the strongholds of the fatherless orphan spirit were crumbling with every declaration and hug.  That evening, the room was super saturated with a lot of love!!!

While in Manila, we visited some of Cheryl’s (our daughter-in-love) Filipino family.  A gracious meal and a short afternoon and evening in their home made for an truly unforgettable experience, making us fall more in love with her precious family and wanting to go back soon!
Read Manila testimonies at the bottom of this email.

Springfield, MO – A Treasure Hunt – so easy!
I co-spoke at a men’s conference in Springfield with two of my Kansas city friends, Steve Bartlett and Hal Linhardt.  Saturday afternoon the group split up 2 x 2 to go on a Treasure Hunt.  Two of our clues were ‘Panera Bread’ and ‘a woman with flowers’.  On the way there, Lonnie and I released angels to prepare the Lord’s ‘treasure’ for the Heavenly encounter they were about to have.  When we arrived at Panera Bread no one fit our clues, but as we sat down to drink our tea, a young lady sat down not far from us who had a large purse with bright colored flowers.  I approached her and introduced myself and our Treasure Hunt.  I then pointed to her purse and informed her that she fit two of the clues.  She sort of sheepishly smiled.  I then asked her name.  She said, “____ Rose”.  Surprised, both of us couldn’t help but laugh.  She didn’t only HAVE flowers… she WAS the flower!!  I ask my buddy Lonnie to come over.  We talked briefly and prayed for some aches she had from working a double job.  Then Lonnie asked her if she had ever given her heart to the Lord Jesus.  She said, “No.”  He asked if she knew what that meant… and she indicated that she clearly did.  He asked her if she’d like to do that right now.  She quickly, easily and happily said, “Yes.”  We led her in a simple prayer.  It was very easy to see the Lord’s presence upon her as she prayed.  There’s much more to this story, but later as we turned to leave, we heard her exclaim out loud to herself, “Wow!”  When I heard her, I turned back toward her and we caught eyes.  Both of us had a deeply satisfying smile all over our faces, knowing that we all had just encountered a Divine setup. Jesus had expertly led Lonnie and me to His ‘treasure’… and the angels had prepared her for her rendezvous with destiny. So easy… and so fun!

Texas trip
The first week of December, Debbie and I made a little tour through Texas (Mansfield, Big Spring, Abilene and Royse City).  So many good relationships and so many God things took place. One rewarding time happened during the weekend meetings in Big Spring.  We opened up some fresh and current theology about the goodness of God and the stunning favor and position we, His people, have.  I also admonished that someone of every group must pay the price to ‘get hot’ in God. Someone must get a ‘fever’ so that we have something ‘contagious’ enough to ‘infect’ others with.  Well, in the last meeting our worship morphed into an anointed prayer time.  I pressed us to not preach, exhort or beg our impressions, but rather to prophesy and declare them as kings with authority.  (Here are a few of my blog posts on upgraded prayer.)  Understandably, it is more than a little awkward to make the transition in our minds and our vocabulary!  But two notable times were when two of the guys got ‘hot’… and that’s what happens when we step into the grace that God gives to each of us when we do it His way.  Both were overcome with tears of elation as they stepped into an anointing that ‘super-empowered’ them.  Both, tangibly felt the authority of God come upon them as they began to prophesy over their spheres of influence.  As they embraced their anointing, the anointing spread through the room with everyone fearlessly and boldly rising to the occasion.  After the older patriarch sat down, I knowingly asked him why he stood up to prophesy… and why he took his coat off… and why he had tears in his eyes.  He somewhat shyly but confidently said, “I got the FEVER!”  The room burst into unrestrained laughter of approval and affirmation of the elder.  It was electrifying for all of us.  And that is the ‘take away’… when we get ‘hot’ and begin to walk in Father’s anointing… without pressure or fanfare… it automatically awakens and calls those around us into Life.

We prophesied over the local natural spring called Big Spring and the spiritual springs of Living Water in Big Spring.  May they flow fresh and free into the city and region!!!

Wow, I love opening up the believers’ hearts and minds to our Father’s magnanimous intentions… and watching the discovery moments!!  Don’t get much better than that!  You can read more of their responses below.  

Healing in Mansfield
Our good friend Bob has a chronic condition where his heart will start beating fast and require that he take meds to calm it down.  The meds don’t always work… and they have a negative side effect.  We were with him when another episode occurred and he hadn’t taken any meds.  He asked for prayer.  We prayed confident declarative soaking prayers for about 10 minutes.  He said it was better… but about 5 minutes later as he was talking, he exclaimed with surprise, “Wow, it’s gone… just like the meds, but without any of the negative side effects!”  Thank you, Lord!!

Thank you all… SO much, for your prayers and care!!  Literally, we are very conscious of your prayer ‘cover’ and care for us, as we minister.  We love being about our Father’s business and are VERY honored that our hearts are joined with you in this journey!!!  

Lotsa love
Mark and Debbie

PS Click here to view our itinerary.

Testimonies and responses

Manila, Philippines
It’s been a week & we continue to receive stories of breakthrough! Your visit has brought sparks of revival!  I’m preparing now for our prayer and thanksgiving for what the Lord did in the conference.  In four hours, we shall be gathering and remember the goodness of the Lord.  I’m excited on this, even if I’m not a pro.  What you told me about keeping the Presence aflame has never left me so I’m not delaying this any further.  We’re doing it tonight … and I’d like to see a culture of keeping the Presence burning, and tears flowing, in our gathering.  I had a prayer walk this morning and saturated myself with His Presence and I felt He met me.  I can’t thank you enough.  You and Debbie have pointed us to the tenderness of His heart … and feeling the heartbeat of His affection.  We want this to grow in us!  Pray for the fever to go high temperature!

My gratitude to you too 🙂 what you shared was something that truly changed the way I think. 🙂

Thank you for releasing the Father’s heart to us the past few days! Your love and passion for Him is contagious! The message that you carry bears the emotions of the Lord towards us! It was amazing! 

i am really blessed to see and listen to your word of Hope. God is really personal to His children, when i pass through the fire of tunnel all i could hear is God overflowing love. And im so much happy and joyful when you both hug me coz you both look like my mom and dad, but they are together with the Lord. And im so thankful that God has used you to really be His mouthpiece, hands and hugs. I am so thankful and until now im so overwhelm by his love and grace. last friday night, me and my friends are crying coz when you talk, we could sense God is speaking to our spirit.

I felt fire all over my body…and joy overwhelmed me… AMAZING! One great night..🔥🔥

Springfield, MO
Thanks so much!  You were such a blessing and I was powerfully touched. 

Springfield, MO
Thanks for everything this weekend.  The Lord has truly used you… Hopefully we’ll see you and the crew again sometime in the future.  Jolly good jubilant Joy!!!

Big Spring, TX
H-h-heeee y’all. I’m,,, I ben drink’n from a, a, wa, wa, wait, wait, um, a well.  Nnno.  I meeeen a, a new well. Yep. I’m ash sober ash ‘m gonna git.  And nuffin, nuffin I can do boutit.
Well, that is the way I felt when I left the last meeting Saturday evening, and pretty much every day since.  For years we have been waiting for the vocabulary, the terminology, the analogy, and the revelation in understanding what Father God has brought us into.

Big Spring, TX
Hello!  It was such a joy to finally meet you, and experience his presence in such a mighty way!  Thank you for the heart felt ministry!

Big Spring, TX
Thanks Mark and Debbie for coming to Big Spring!!  ❤.  Y’all are a huge blessing to us all!!

Dwelling Place Ministries
11011 Olive St
KC, MO 64131
DPM home: www.dpmkc.org
Twitter: www.twitter.com/marklh
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SP book: www.dpmkc.org/supernaturalprovision

Man… lower or higher than angels?

13 Dec

Let’s begin by establishing Jesus’ position first.

“To which of the angels did God ever say, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”? Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?” – Heb 1:13-14

This passage starts out by asserting the place of Jesus over the angels.  No debate can stand against Jesus’ deity and elevated status.  This passage ends with the assertion that angels are sent as ministering agents to serve all who inherit salvation (and that’s talking about me… and you).

Let’s continue establishing how Father has set Jesus above all heavenly beings:

“which He exerted in Christ when He RAISED Him from the dead and SEATED Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, FAR ABOVE all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come.  And God put everything under His feet and made Him head over everything for the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.” – Eph 1:21-23 (caps mine)

Okay, I think we’re solid that Father has given Jesus supremacy over all other powers and authorities… which includes superiority over angels.  

Now, let’s look at man’s position and status. 

“What is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that You care for him?  Yet You have made him a little lower than God, and You crown him with glory and majesty!  You make him to rule over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet…” – Ps 8:4-6

Originally God saw man as being only slightly lower than Himself… and God gave man authority to rule over all the works of His hands. 

Unfortunately, we abdicated our position in The Fall.  We became blinded by the wound and consequence of sin, from our elevated position of being made in the image and likeness of God Himself.  We’ve lived for thousands of years under the devil’s lie that we were just ‘clay pots’ and damaged goods and shouldn’t ever be presumptuous to think that we were capable of receiving our long forgotten favor or qualities of God.  

But by Grace through faith (Eph 2:8-9) in Jesus’ work on the Cross we are given back our abdicated place of favor and position.  At the time of salvation we WERE raised and seated with our Lord Jesus in Heaven.

“And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus” – Eph 2:6-7

Notice that this is a past tense event.  We HAVE BEEN raised and are currently seated with Him in Heaven.  Other passages confirm this:  Col 3:1-4; Rms 8:17; etc. 

Now I don’t know if you’ve caught it yet, but if we were raised with Christ… and are seated with Christ…  then we realize that WE TOO are “far above all rule and authority, power and dominion“… and that means above angels.  This may difficult to embrace, but the truth is that the believer has been elevated to a position that is superior to angels. 

In fact, we realize that angels are sent to serve us… (Heb 1:14) not rule over us.  They are emissaries and messengers sent to enable and empower us to fully embrace and carry out our Father’s business.  Our Father’s heart is so rich in favor toward us that He even commands angels to help us find our way! 

“For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;” – Ps 91:11

My personal opinion is that since we’re so elementary in our understanding of this powerful reality, we must walk carefully with our newly discovered status.  Maybe this is similar to the boy Joash (II Kings 11&12) becoming king when he was too young to understand.  He was overseen by tutors, aides and priests until he was old enough to rule.  In reality, young Joash had more status and position than they, but wasn’t wise enough to wield that authority yet.  He had to cooperate with his tutors until he could fully handle his elevated position and authority as King.

Now that we’ve got the principle, watch how it works similarly in a different context:

“Now I say, that the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all; But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.” – Gal‬ ‭4:1-2‬

You see, as we’re discovering and growing into our kingly status unto our God… we’re simultaneously being served by angels who are helping us into our full understanding and function as kings.  We must cooperate with angels in the growth process.  This process and transition from immature ‘kings’ to mature ‘kings’ will end up with a full manifestation of man ruling over every authority under Heaven and in earth. (Dan 7:27; Luke 10:19; Rms 5:17)

Then to give this whole idea a final paradigm boost, Apostle Paul tells us, “Do you not know that we will judge angels?” (I Cor 6: 3).  Before we knew our favor, status and position in God, this passage was confusing and overwhelming.  But as we understand God’s heart defining us and positioning us, we begin to see and have faith that He has placed more favor and Godly authority on us than we ever imagined.

So now we heartily welcome the angels’ service to us on our spiritual journey.  Without a doubt, they currently know more about our true status than we do.  But they’re committed to escorting us into our place and function as mature kings unto God… knowing full well, that even in our immaturity, we’re already “far above” them.

Don’t you just love angels more, now!!!


DPM Update – 2017 Dec – 40th anniversary

9 Dec

Italy adventures and cruise…

Early this year, Debbie was talking about our upcoming 40th wedding anniversary (which was in September) and said, “You know… I’ve never been on a Mediterranean Cruise before.”  And light heartedly, I responded, “You know… there are many things we’ve never done before.”  But I kind of had a feeling that it just might happen.

Someone heard of Debbie’s desire to celebrate our 40th anniversary with a Mediterranean cruise, and graciously gave us a gift toward making that happen.  Since we had plans to be in Israel already, it just made sense to combine the two trips.  The two trips added up to being gone for 5 weeks.

After Israel, we flew to Rome.  From there we immediately took a train to Florence and explored the older center of town.  It’s hard to grasp the contrast between the difference of what ‘old’ is in the US versus in Europe/Middle East.  Our ‘old’ is a couple hundred years of age.  Their ‘old’ is more like 500-1000… or even 2000 years old!  It’s mind boggling.

The second day, we rode a train to Pisa and viewed the Leaning Tower of Pisa.  It’s really there… and it really leans.  The third day, we took a train to Venice to explore the intriguing water canal city.  Lots of the buildings are 500-1000 years old and are sinking slowly into the sea, making many of the original first floors uninhabitable because they’re now flooded with sea-water.  It’s a crazy issue to try to get your head around.  We did the “romantical” gondola ride with the gondolier expertly steering us through the streets/canals.

On the fourth day we began our 8-day/7-night cruise which took us to five places in three countries (Italy, Greece, Croatia) (including the Mediterranean, Adriatic, Ionian and the Aegean seas and the Sea of Crete).  Through Debbie’s ‘super-duper deal finding abilities’, we were legitimately given a very spacious handicap room on the ship, which was larger than our hotel rooms where we stayed earlier that week.  It even had a spacious balcony. God is good!

At Bari, Italy it was a really great treat to meet special friends of my family: Vito & Pat.  They are strong believers, have huge hearts and are spilling over with love.  We spent about 3 or 4 hours with them and it felt like we’d known them forever.  It was hard to say goodbye.
In Athens, Greece we met my 2nd cousin and her husband: Marcy & George.  He’s Greek and they are Christian missionaries to regional churches.  They gave us a personal tour of Mars Hill and explained the Biblical context.  Fascinating to be sure!!  Just wish we would have had more time to enjoy their company and heart conversation.

After the cruise, we caught a fast-train from Venice to Rome.  Once there, after a little orientation of how to use the subway, we found it easy, fast and cheap… so we skipped around the city to see the Vatican and Coliseum, etc.  And of course we had to have a few romantic meals in the sidewalk eateries of Rome.

We found Italy to be captivatingly old and quaint, with friendly people… most speak at least some English.  The food was okay, but not sensational.  Mostly, we enjoyed the mystique of being in a unique and romantic environment.

Most sights we visited on our travels were old or ancient… and even though many architectures are stately, they look pretty ‘tired’.  Of course, oldness has it’s beauty because of what it stands for and the history attached to it.  It has survived wars, wear and tear, weather and earthquakes.  Since much of our Western culture has European and Middle Eastern roots, we give lots of respect to the relics and ruins which reflect part of our heritage.

Life there is pretty local… meaning, the mindset is mostly about the local community… little shops for everyday items, narrow streets, small apartments/flats, climbing stairs to higher floors, adjoining buildings with shared common walls, lots more walking to/from places or bicycle commuting and scooters for the longer distances, etc.  Here’s one for instance; There, most everyday groceries are bought in ‘little hole in the wall’ stores that are smaller than our smallest convenience stores.  Even their larger grocery stores are about the size of our local Panera Bread restaurant.

So, I could see why they may love visiting the West with its shiny glass, chrome, stainless steel and mirrors… it’s expansive green fields and crops… it’s modern mass travel on wide highways and interstates with a 65-85 mph speed limit.  In general, it strikes me that the West may miss the history and depth of culture… that could mean the West is more driven and less anchored.  But in any case, every culture offers its strength as an asset to all.

The artwork of paintings, sculptures and architecture are obvious and strong statements which give credence to a highly creative and deeply passionate people in that part of the world.

In those 5 weeks (Israel/Europe) I’m confident that we’ve walked more miles on more cobble stone sidewalks and streets than ever in our lives.  Walking in general, has been the primary way of getting around each city we visited.  BTW, it’s a little bit of a trick to learn how walk expecting unexpected unevenness in the ground… but that is the way it has been for 1000s of years… and after a while you don’t even think about it.

After Rome we flew back to Tel Aviv to catch the last half of our round trip ticket back home.  On this trip (because of different time zones, daylight savings time changes and different country policies) we had to change our clocks/watches 9 times to accommodate the local time.  That means keeping your body-clock flexible, too. That’s been fun! 😉

Our trip was very memorable and special for Debbie and me.  Most of our lives we’re happily ‘giving out’… but we were glad to get away from everything for just some ‘us’ time.  We both love adventure, so exploring everything new, was totally fun for us.  We’ll have to do that again… maybe on our 41st anniversary! 🙂  Or maybe the next time, we’ll take our family!  The Lord knows…..

Thanks for your interest, your love and your care for us.

The Lord bless you and keep you and give you peace!

Our love and blessings,

Mark & Debbie

Dwelling Place Ministries
11011 Olive St
KC, MO 64131
DPM home: http://www.dpmkc.org 
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