Five years ago, the Lord led us to make Aliyah, becoming dual US-Israeli citizens. What an adventure of faith and challenge it has been.
Packing up our belongings in Northern Virginia and preparing to move to Israel on August 14, 2014, was very exciting, yet honestly we also felt a bit sad leaving the USA. But Lynn’s Mom graciously came with us for three weeks to help us settle in.
We landed in Israel on August 15th and immediately moved into a small apartment in Netanya, just north of Tel Aviv, two blocks from the Mediterranean Sea.
We had no idea of all the trials and hardships ahead. For starters, we landed in the middle of a full-blown war in which terrorists in Gaza were firing more than 4,000 rockets and mortars at innocent Israeli civilians that month. Some of our American friends thought we were crazy for going. Some days we wondered that ourselves.
Five years later, we now live in Jerusalem. We have bought an apartment there. Two of our sons serve in the Israeli army. All of our sons speak Hebrew better than Lynn and me (and Lynn’s Hebrew is definitely better than mine!) Slowly, slowly, we are putting down roots.
For all the many challenges, I can truly say I am deeply grateful that the Lord has given us the courage to obey His calling. I’m so grateful for Lynn’s family and mine who came to visit us in Israel and encourage us — indeed, for the many, many friends and pastors and Evangelical leaders who came and visited us in those early weeks and months, even during the heat of the Gaza war.
I’m grateful, too, for all the lessons that the God of Israel has been teaching us from the Bible and though daily life, and for all the dear and precious friends we have made — both Jews and Arabs, both believers in Jesus and not-yet-believers.
May the King of Israel — the King of the Universe, the King of Glory — have His way with us and teach us the joy of knowing Him, serving Him, clinging to Him, and bearing fruit in His name, come what may!
Jeremiah 32:37-41 — “Behold, I will gather them from all the countries to which I drove them in my anger and my wrath and in great indignation. I will bring them back to this place, and I will make them dwell in safety. And they shall be my people, and I will be their God. I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. I will rejoice in doing them good, and I will plant them in this land in faithfulness, with all my heart and all my soul.”
• Our family with Lynn’s brother and his family on the Golan Heights.
• Two photos of our family on the United flight from Newark to Tel Aviv on August 14, 2014.
• Two of our sons and me packing to move to Israel.
• Our family and Lynn’s Mom having our first dinner in our new apartment upon moving to Israel.
• My parents and my nephew visiting us in Caesarea.
• Our youngest son and me at the beach in Netanya upon arriving in Israel.
• The apartment building where we first lived in Netanya.
• The sign that greeted us when we landed at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv.
- To pre-order my next political thriller, THE JERUSALEM ASSASSIN, please click here.
- NOW AVAILABLE: To buy your own copy of THE PERSIAN GAMBLE — my latest political thriller about the U.S., Israel, the UAE and Saudi Arabia trying to thwart a plot by Iran to buy nuclear weapons from North Korea — in hardcover, e-book, large print, or audio formats, please click here.
- On August 15th, I’ll be speaking in Denver. Learn more and register today by clicking here.
- In September, Lynn and I will be hosting a special cruise of New England and Canada with The Joshua Fund. Learn more and register today while we still have a few cabins left.
- Would you like to make a secure, tax deductible investment in The Joshua Fund (www.joshuafund.net)? This is the non-profit organization that my wife, Lynn, and I founded in 2006 to educate and mobilize Christians to bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of Jesus, to strengthen the Church in the Epicenter, to preach the Gospel and teach the Word of God, to care for the poor and needy in Israel (both Jews and Arabs) with food and other humanitarian relief, care for Holocaust survivors, and care for Syrian and Iraqi refugees and others. The Joshua Fund is a member in good standing of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability. Please click here to learn more. Thanks so much.