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Written from Biblical Tamar Jan. 22, 2006

Shalom from Zion’s South Country,

Did you know that Jericho is not the only city in the Bible called, “The City of Palms”?

Judges 1:16, “And the children of the Kenite, Moses’ father-in-law, went up out of the city of palm trees with the children of Judah into the wilderness of Judah, which lieth in the south of Arad; and they went and dwelt among the people.”

Israeli authorities have identified the area of Biblical Tamar Park - where we have our project of planting date palm trees - as this exact place described in Judges 1:16. (Sometime later I may write some more about the Kenites and who their descendants are today.) I have just learned, also, that the Israeli authorities want this place to become once more like “a city of palm trees.”

I didn’t know that when BLI began the project!

Dr. DeWayne Coxon, the Christian minister appointed by Israel as the curator of Biblical Tamar Park, arrived on Friday. We have been “shopping” for the correct palms to plant here. I think we have about settled on the ones that will meet our objective of greening this part of the Arava desert. We are beginning with the entrance to the park, and if the Lord lays it on many hearts to help in this project, we can do much more. Bible Light thus far is the only organization doing this here, and it is an exciting challenge. Please pray as the project moves forward. There are decisions to make and the big one is concerning water. There is surveying, also, that must be done to make sure they are not planted in areas where sidewalks, etc. will go in later.

I naively expected to see the entrance way half lined with trees already. But living here I understand more all the pros and cons of such a project which is so huge it certainly cannot be done over night - and without careful planning.

I will be giving progress reports as long as I’m in the land and will personally experience this progress myself. Taking pictures, of course, to print and inform you more.

I am enjoying the warmer weather here; however, it can get really chilly, especially at night. It was close to freezing since I came here a week ago. But my room is warm with a new heater/air conditioner unit. And the last few days have been lovely.

I trust you are well and praising the Lord for each day He gives us to serve Him by blessing others. Thanks so much for your prayers and help to Bible Light and me, making it possible to be here and do these land developing projects. We have wonderful promises to that end such as: “When the Lord shall build up Zion, He shall appear in His glory” (Psalm 102:16).

                                  In His Love,