The Mountain of BlessingNov 18, 2022
I’m literally sitting on top of the Mountain of Blessing in the West Bank of Israel as I write this. Tom and I are guests of Tommy and Sherri Waller who founded and lead HaYovel, a ministry here that seeks to connect people from around the world with the Jewish people who are fulfilling prophecy.
Last night we sat around the very large dinner table in the home of one of his 11 children. The conversations and laughter literally filled the room with energy. What started for Tommy and Sherri as a desire to live on a farm, turned into a life-changing move when this remarkable family left mainstream American culture and chose to live among the Amish people in rural Tennessee. While developing their strong family ties and learning to live off the land, God led them to this mountain in Israel where they moved their entire family and set up HaYovel to become advocates for the Jewish “settlers” who’ve returned to Israel to inhabit the land.
The Wallers offer pilgrims a whole new way to experience Israel. Most people come to Israel and walk where Jesus walked. We visit Galilee and Jerusalem with day journeys to the Golan Heights in the north and the Dead Sea in the south. Our experience is RICH! There are hardly words to describe what it’s like to embrace be here.
But, on this trip I’ve discovered there is so much more to this journey! Israel has a past that goes back 3000+ years and they are digging into it! But they also have a present and a future!
HaYovel gives us an opportunity to be a part of what God promised thousands of years ago and is bringing to fulfillment today as the Jewish people return to Israel and inhabit the land. HaYovel brings volunteers come from around the world to work with the people who live here as they bring life to what has been a barren land. The soil is rich and the time in now. All over these rocky hillsides there are vineyards and baby forests. I can’t wait to get out to the farms today to get a better understanding of this work.
Not only have I gotten to see what God is doing in the land and among the Jewish people, but I’ve also enjoyed my birds eye view of the Waller family. Yesterday morning Tom and I got up early (something that is easy to do because of the 8 hour time difference between here and Tennessee), we looked just down the hill and saw Nate tending to the chickens and cows with a few of his very young children. It’s been so much fun watching the children interact with their parents and seeing young moms and dads patiently guiding them. I can’t help but wonder how on earth these siblings and their spouses and the myriad of cousins work out their differences when 8 of the 11 children dwell on the top of this mountain with their families. They run this ministry together, do life together, have babies together—it’s a LOT of together!
And, it’s everything I think God meant for our lives to be!
The Waller family is leading a great ministry, impacting lives, serving God’s chosen people, building solid relationships with Jewish leaders, and changing the world. All one baked chicken dinner at a time.
I’m not exactly sure how much this visit with them is going to impact my life, but I’m certain that it will.
On top of the Mt of Blessing I’m seeing God’s richest blessing, that of a family on mission together in whole-hearted obedience to God, fulfilling a divine calling, and driven by love, devotion, a deep sense of purpose, and old-fashioned hard work.
Check out the ministry of HaYovel here! www.serveisrael.com
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