Thursday, November 5, 2015

Israel - Coming to Life

Olives on the Tree
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed but not in despair; persecuted but not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed.
2 Corinthians 4:8-9

I'd been told it would happen.

The scriptures are coming alive for me. I honestly didn't realize how significantly it would change my reading.


Lysa TerKeurst shared a funny story that might give you an idea of the impact of knowing the terrain, proximity, appearance and even the smell of the land. Lysa adopted two teenage boys from Africa. The pictures in their brain were formed by their African experience. So when she suggested hot dogs for dinner one night, you can imagine the picture that came to mind. Even when Lysa described a hot dog in detail, their understanding was limited. Only after they touched and tasted did the explanations make sense.

It's like that for me here. As we learn about olive trees and talk about the process of pressing oil, the meaning of so many verses intensifies.

Today's verse is one of those.


Olive Trees
Olives are never eaten straight from the tree because they're hard and bitter. They need to be soaked and washed and salted and cracked. In order to get what is most valuable from the olive, it must be pressed.

The first pressing is done by hand, yielding the most valuable oil used in anointing and lighting the Temple menorah. The beaten, hand cracked olives are then processed using a commercial press to yield cooking oil. The mud colored mash that remains is not discarded, but is pressed harder still under heavy stones to yield oil for lighting - light for the world.

Our hearts, like olives, are hard and must go through a process of softening and pressing before yielding their most valuable qualities. And the very hardest pressed bring the most light to the world.

#SeedsOfScripture #Israel #TripOfALifetime @LysaTerkeurst #LightOfTheWorld #P31HolyLand

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