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Mesa Musings:

Pastor can’t help but be poignant

October 20, 2009|By Jim Carnett

As we were checking our luggage at Los Angeles International Airport, the airport received a bomb threat. It was five days after the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland. The entire Tom Bradley Terminal was emptied. We spent two hours curbside.

The all-clear finally came, and we took off three hours late. We had a brief stopover for fuel in Amsterdam, then headed for Ben-Gurion Airport just outside Tel Aviv. We arrived in the evening. We’d been scheduled for an 8 p.m. welcome dinner at our Tel Aviv hotel. As it turned out, the kitchen and dining room staff had to be held over so that we could be fed at 11 p.m.

I remember thinking that because of the actions of some knucklehead in Los Angeles — 10 time zones away — the lives of a dozen hotel staffers had been affected. They were delayed by three hours in going home to their families.

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Wood touched on that issue the next morning at our chapel service. It proved to be a poignant object lesson. Everything we do, he said, has consequences — to the point that we may even touch a life half a world away.

Over the next two weeks Wood and his lovely wife, Jewel, led us on a breathtaking journey through Galilee, Jerusalem, Haifa, Bethlehem, Caesarea, Nazareth, Megiddo, the Golan Heights, Masada and the Dead Sea.

We stayed at a kibbutz on the Sea of Galilee, and at a hotel on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem that overlooked the Temple Mount.

Wood was a fountain of knowledge and inspiration. It was a journey I shall never forget. I was so moved by it that I signed up for Wood’s next Israel trip.

This time we landed in Amman, Jordan, and spent time at Petra, the ancient rose-hued Nabataean city of stone. Before I shuffle off this mortal coil, I’d like to return to Israel just once more with Wood.


JIM CARNETT lives in Costa Mesa. His column runs Wednesdays.

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