Western Wall & Pool of Bethesda
After four days of being sick in her room, my video consultant, Kristie Kerr was determined to join us.
Though her throat was still too sore to eat anything but soft food (and sometimes, not even that), the antibiotics from two days before were definitely working. Miraculously so.
Once again, we loaded up the van with the camera equipment, and I tucked in my roller bag filled with makeup and wardrobe for the day.
I’d grown accustom to sketching out the segments we’d be filming that day the night before, then packing my wardrobe accordingly – sometimes up to all five outfits depending on the session and bonus video pieces we happened to be shooting. In retrospect, I should have chosen one look and bought several repeats to wear for the entire project. Unfortunately, vanity overruled logic as it often does.
Here’s a sample of what the detailed schedule for “Day Five” looked like (and how it changed over the course of the day):
- 8:00 am – Western Wall – Israel Moment (blue shirt/gray capri/black sandal)
- 9:10 am – Rabbi Tunnel – B-roll
- Change: Cancelled due to time, instead filmed Session 04 segment at platform overlooking Temple Mount (had outfit, yay!)
- 12:00 pm – Pool of Bethesda – Session 06 – all six segments (tan lace jacket/coral/dk jean capri/brown sandal)
- Change: Didn’t open until 1:30, spent time updating scripts
- 5:00 pm – Caiaphas’ House – Sesson 05 – four segments (blue jacket/white/black capri/black sandals)
- Change: Due to delay at Bethesda, had to move that shoot to next day
- Film Session 04 segment missed yesterday (jean jacket/orange/tan capri/brown sandal)
- Change: Still didn’t get this shot, put on list for make-up day
Here’s a shot of some of the scribbled notes Kristie and I lived by…
Up Against the Wall
As soon as got to the Western Wall (or the Wailing Wall, as we know it), we set up the equipment. Once again, my heart was overwhelmed with gratitude that God would allow me to film Lazarus Awakening in such amazing spots.
To be in the place where so many Christian pilgrims and faithful Jews have prayed over the centuries was just as moving as it had been the first time I’d visited when our tour guide had explained that the Jews believe the presence of God dwells there, and that He answers “yes” to each request made at that spot.
Though I knew God dwells in believing hearts rather than earthly locations, a sweet faith rose in my spirit as I tucked my folded prayer requests in the cracks of the massive wall and prayed with deep intercession for the people I love.
Off to the Pool
After filming at the wall and capturing an unplanned segment on a landing that overlooked the Temple Mount, our driver took us back up the Mount of Olives for a delicious lunch and view of the Holy City. Then it was off to the pool!
Located in the compound of St. Anne Church, this is another one of my favorite places in Israel. Walkways surround the excavated pools far below, and you’re able to walk through ruins of buildings left from centuries of buildings that had been built to commemorate the location. Though it takes some imagination, you get an idea of what it might have been like when Jesus encountered the lame man in John 5:1-15.
Here’s part of the teaching I share in Lazarus Awakening teaching session six, “Do You Want to Be Well?”
We spent all afternoon filming, and were some of the last people to leave the compound. But as the team was packing up, I slipped into the empty church to pray. The sense of God’s presence had been so precious that day, I needed to respond in worship.
After several moments alone with the Lord, I stepped outside and called Kristie over. She has a beautiful voice and regularly leads worship at large conferences. Though I was certain the strep throat would make singing impossible, I wanted her to experience the legendary acoustics that make the Church of St. Anne’s such a special place.
But then Kristie surprised me. Unbeknownst to me, my contemporary worship leader friend had a major in classical music. Though the act had to cause excruciating pain, Kristie began to sing. But not just sing, she soared. Her aria lifted and swelled, echoing gently then powerfully through and around the empty stone sanctuary like a silken mighty wave.
And I wept as we worshiped.
For there, between sickness and complete healing, my sweet friend sang. And she sang with all her heart.
The Song Inbetween
As I’ve thought back to that day, the memories have somehow formed an outline of what it looks like to believe God for a miracle. Rough and incomplete, I believe it gives us steps to follow all the same.
- Go to the Western Wall – present your requests to God and pray in faith believing.
- Answer the Question – when Jesus asks, “Do you want to get well?” let your answer be a resounding yes, no matter what that healing might require.
- Don’t Forget to Sing – though your healing may seem to tarry, friend – worship in between.
Though your voice may sound and feel raspy, raw and imperfect, though it might actually cause you physical and emotional pain…let your song rise up to heaven as a sweet sacrifice to God.
For as you do, I believe you’ll learn what true worship – and true healing! – is all about.
What would singing “inbetween” your miracle look like for you?
What verse has strengthened you while waiting for a miracle?
I look forward to hearing from you. If you’d like to read more about “Filming Lazarus Awakening,” you can start at the beginning by reading “The Dream.”