Wendy is a dear friend and fellow Messianic Jew who longs to live in Israel or to make what is called Aliyah but is not permitted to by the government there because of her belief in Yeshua (Jesus). It is where her heart dwells and that is why I wrote this wish story for her. When she heard of my other stories, she asked me for one and In the Land of Milk & Honey is the result.
Consciousness came slowly…lazily…gently. The bird song somehow sounded different, the air heavier and sweeter. Wendy opened her eyes slowly and beheld dappled sunlight filtering through a canopy of grape leaves, laden with heavy purple-black grapes.
She turned her head to the side and looked about her “room”. It was simple and yet beautiful. Pure white blankets glowing with the morning sunshine lay upon her. A wooden table, elegant in its simple beauty held a bowl of fresh fruit, and a pitcher of iced tea and a glass.
With a sudden intake of breath, Wendy sat up and looked through the transparent walls of her sukkot booth. In the distance were rolling hills of vineyards and orchards and to the other side in the distance, the lake of Galilee. She suddenly knew why the air felt heavier and sweeter…the presence of Yeshua.
How had she come to be in this place; the land where her heart beat like a drum with joy and all her senses were awakened as if from a deep stupor? Yisrael. She stood slowly, hesitantly to her feet noticing at once her white linen frock, glowing as if it possessed a light of its own. On her feet were hand crafted sandals. The morning sun was rising higher and with it came a breeze smelling of roses, bay laurel and the fresh scent of the sea.
She stepped outside her sukkot booth into a garden which surrounded it. It was humming with bees and fluttering butterflies, busy collecting nectar from the numerous blossoms. With pounding heart; afraid to wake up from what must surely be a dream, she slowly climbed the nearest hill, breathing deeply in and out as if each breath were nourishment. She stood and faced the holy city, Jerusalem and was stunned. It was not as she remembered it at all. The Dome of the Rock was gone, and in its place stood a gleaming temple of gold and alabaster. The filth of the Arabic section of the old city was gone, replaced by avenues of trees and streets that glistened like gold in the early light.
“Do you like it?” spoke a familiar masculine voice. Wendy closed her eyes and inhaled sharply. It was the voice of her beloved but it was not in her head but in her ears.
“Yeshua…” she breathed, holding up her arms; tears welling up and spilling down her cheeks from underneath her closed eyes. She fell slowly to her knees. “Yeshua?”
“There is a question in the saying of my name, beloved,” came the response. “You are wanting to know if you may stay here always?” “Yes,” whispered Wendy, barely able to breath or speak.
“My precious child,” responded the Master, gently enfolding her in His embrace. “There is no such thing as time where I am concerned; for I live outside of it…and you with Me. Where I am there you are also…and my eyes and heart of ever upon this place, so in a sense…you have never left Israel and it has never left you. The body which you must inhabit within the human time domain is limited but not your heart or your soul. One day time will cease to exist and both body and soul will be reunited with me in this place that remains the apple of my eye. Can you endure until that “time” and do the work I have set before you?”
“Lord, you know my heart and soul’s desire…I will always gladly serve you.”
Yeshua smiled upon her and in the instant she beheld that smile she felt the sight, sounds, smells and “feel” of the land implanted indelibly upon her mind and heart. From that moment on, wherever she placed her feet, Israel and Jerusalem went with her and before her. A secret to enjoy between her and The Redeemer as well as the hope of the real reward yet to come.
“Now, come…” Jesus said, holding out his warm brown hand to her. “Let us enjoy this day together and converse to our heart’s content. What would you like to do first?”