Shalom, blogworld.

שָׁלוֹם (Shalom), blogworld.

That was too predictable, wasn’t it?


I just wanted to say hello.

My mind is still a bit muddled from the jet lag but the tiny fact that I can’t seem to make out a single coherent thought has never stopped me from talking heretofore so I shall proceed.

And besides, y’all are forgiving and this should help:

Just another thing I love about Atlanta: Octane cappuccinos.  By the way, what is the best cappuccino you’ve ever had?  That is a random but profound question for a Friday, don’t you think?  It just makes my entire week when the barista makes the little intricate designs with the foam.

Have I mentioned that I keep waking up at 4:00 in the morning hungry for hummus?

Yesterday I spent hours on end making this very basic video slideshow from my pictures from Israel.  My new hobby as of late is photography (and yes–it has taken the place of cooking for now).  Israel is quite a location for the photo enthusiast, let me tell you.  Please understand several things before you watch the slideshow:

  • 1) I am not Rich Kalonick, though he did walk me through several things via text message yesterday.  For the first time I think I fully respect the work he does when he creates the slideshows for the LPL events.  It takes more time and work than you might imagine. So thanks, Rich!
  • 2) The slideshow is quite long, running about twelve minutes. By no means should you watch the whole thing if you are bored to tears. You have complete control and you can’t say I didn’t warn you!  😉
  • 3) This slideshow reflects about 5% of the people and places on our trip to Israel. I literally whittled down 2,000 photos to about 200. Sadly, there was just no way to include them all here.  But on the bright side, if I had included all 2,000 the video would have been about six hours.

Having made this disclaimer, I do so much hope you enjoy it!

Israel Trip from Melissa Fitzpatrick on Vimeo.
Music added: “Beautiful” by Shawn McDonald & “I Stand Amazed” by Chris Tomlin.

Our trip was truly incredible.  I have some more substantial thoughts that I would like to share but I will get back to you with those ponderings when I am not in such a fog–hopefully sometime next week.

Have a wonderful weekend, Siestas! We sure love you!




465 Responses to “Shalom, blogworld.”

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  1. 51

    Breathtaking! What an amazing experience. Hoping one day I’ll have the same. Thanks for sharing.

  2. 52
    Erin says:

    Melissa! Wow, what a wonderful slide show, and beautiful pictures! I had goosebumps!

  3. 53
    Brenda says:

    Thank you so much for the video, it was great to see! For some reason, I did not expect to see palm trees there. I got chills seeing pics of the tomb! Thank you Jesus!! 🙂

    Can’t say that the fish looked appetizing!! lol

    So happy you guys had a wonderful trip!

  4. 54

    I love it! I want to go to the Holy Land so badly I could cry 🙂 So glad you had a wonderful time!

  5. 55
    jackie says:

    Thank you for sharing. truly. i am moved beyond words at the images…

  6. 56
    Brittney says:

    beautiful! so beautiful! I hope I can go there someday!

  7. 57
    Cathy Adams says:

    It was AWESOME! I had tears in my eyes because it reminded me (in such a beautiful way) of our trip. Thank you so much for doing this, even in a fog-induced frame of mind!


  8. 58
    Becky says:

    Sweetie, you did a great job. Thanks so much for sharing, and if you decide to put the rest of those photos on here, that is alright with me.
    Thanks again.

  9. 59
    sisterlynn says:

    Thanks for putting this together Melissa!

    Someday I hope to go there.

    I imagine you all will never read Scripture the same way again now that you have seen with your own eyes the landscape and terrain.

    May your eyes continue to be opened in new ways to His Word.

    love and blessings
    Sister Lynn

  10. 60
    NikkiPoppins says:

    Awesome job on the video girl! Loved seeing the pictures and the songs you chose were such great ones! Love both of them. I was completely blown away all over again by your awesome picture taking skills!

    Can’t wait to hear your thoughts on the trip!

    Love ya!

  11. 61
    Lynn says:

    WOW! Thank you for taking the time to share this with us. I was very moved just watching, can’t imagine what it would be like to actually be there!

  12. 62
    Judi says:

    Thanks for sharing those photos with us Melissa! They are beautiful and I enjoyed re-living each scene with you. You made me hungry for falafel! The last time I was there I bought a felafel baller so that I can make them at home but they’re just not the same as when you eat them in an outdoor market with pickled turnip and other assorted condiments.

  13. 63
    sweet anonymous says:

    Beautiful!!!!! Absolutely Beautiful!!

  14. 64
    Marcy says:

    That was amazing! Thank you, and I can’t wait to hear more.

  15. 65
    toknowhim says:


    You did a great job with the slideshow… Your pics were beautiful…

  16. 66
    joyinthejourneys says:

    You rock, melissa 🙂

  17. 67
    patty says:

    Awesome! Thank you!!

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    Love you all,

  18. 68
    Leanne from Canada says:

    An amazing “peek” into what I’m sure was an incredible trip. You (or whoever was on the other end of the camera) have a real gift for photography….brought us all right there with you and for that we thank-you. I love that we can travel the world without ever boarding a plane! Thank-you for this gift to all of us.

  19. 69
    Terry says:

    Shalom, Melissa! Thank you so much for taking time to put that together and share some of your experience in the Holy Land with us! I can imagine that you and your mother would be THE MOST EXCELLENT tour guides! What a rich and humbling experience it must have been. You are truly blessed!

  20. 70

    Your pictures are stunning! Thank you so much for sharing them with us!

  21. 71
    Gayla says:

    Oh, Melissa, Beth, and all of you! That was so meaningful and so beautiful. I began to sob when I saw the little crinkly words about the town sign, Nazareth, and believe me, I was moved through it all with a box of Kleenexes right here for the last.. Then I had to laugh to see Beth eating that big pretzelly thing… You guys are so real and so beautiful, it’s amazing! I have a heart full of concern for those sacred places in light of the political/military actions in our midst. My heart says, “Oh, no! Not the tomb, not the wall, not the….” We are all in HIS mighty and beautiful hands. That photo of those hands on the wall… and the city at nightfall.. amazing pictures. Loved to see you all there and wish I could have been there too. Will there be a video? Praise God for a beautiful experience. The world is better because all of you blessed it and are passing on the beauty and passion you experienced. Thanks so much. I rattle on too long! Night!

  22. 72
    Kathy B says:

    Absolutely Amazing! Great job, Melissa. Do you hire out? Seriously, the Israeli Tourism Dept. will be contacting you soon. Thank you, Thank you for including us in your trip. I’m almost speechless. You wouldn’t really believe totally speechless, would you?
    Best Cappaccino? Sounds profound. Strong and yet smooth, sweet and yet biting. It teases your sense of smell and then leaves a foamy mustache to mock you. Though I think I make a fairly mean one myself, I have to defer to…Starbucks.
    And just for the record, I never saw a bead of sweat on one single soul. That purse-size deoderant is bound to catch on.

  23. 73
    twinkle says:

    The picture of Beth with the shawl. Precious.
    The tomb. I am undone.
    The sea. I feel His presence in that photo.
    The faces of the Jewish people. O how I love them!
    The smiling camel. The man on the donkey. The sheep on the hillside. Be still my heart…
    The weeping siestas. Me, too.
    The praying siestas. My hand is own that wall with yours.
    The prayers tucked in the crevices. Thank you.
    How precious this was to me and how happy I am that this group of volunteers was rewarded in such a spirit gift.
    Y’all are a treasure to me and I thank you, Melissa, for sharing your pictures.
    I cried and worshiped all the way through.
    Shalom. Shalom. Shalom.

  24. 74
    kimberley says:

    i remember studying “a woman’s heart” almost 3 years ago – and how precious the picture of the tabernacle became to me then, how my love for Jesus grew deeper.

    i have found myself in a world that has been completely turned upside down in the last few months, leaving me feeling overwhelmed by grief at times. these pictures that you posted, while gripping my heart and leaving me longing to see and touch the places where Jesus walked and ministered to hurting women like me, remind me that this is just a taste of our future Jerusalem, where i won’t just see the places that my Lord has walked, but i will be able to walk right beside Him; where my questions will be answered. where my tears will be wiped away.

    hopefully over some fancy-dancy cappuccinos too.

    thank you for giving us a glimpse of “home”.

    • 74.1
      Janice says:

      Just remember that He holds every one of your tears in his hands and when you hurt He hurts! I pray that you find peace and that your struggles will be few. God bless you.

  25. 75

    This “heretofore” makes me SO HAPPY! 🙂

    I cannot wait to watch! Happy weekend full of rest!!

  26. 76
    Lisa says:

    Melissa, thank you so much for posting those pictures. WOW! What a blessing!

  27. 77
    Siesta OC says:

    You are so funny Melissa, You totally say what I think! First off, the pic of the cappuccinos ( know that I had to copy your ‘cappuccino’ word above for fear of spelling it wrong – and no I am not done with So Long Insecurity). That picture was too much, I have never had a fancy-foam coffee, but I really want one now.

    OK so the video, cried, duh! Just love the faces and obviously the sights. I just had to giggle thru the tears at the open tomb, because HES just not there. What a glorious sight, no one in a tomb. The third picture of your mom in the slideshow, where she is leaning in deep thought, broke my heart because she just seemed to be in a moment with the LORD and I love that.
    The water was gorgeous, and the smiles and tears brought those back home to me.

    It is a dream of mine to go to Israel and I know I will…but thank you for this equisite display of life there.

    Hallelujah! I LOVE YOU JESUS!!!!

  28. 78
    Miriam says:

    Absolutely amazing pictures!

  29. 79

    If I never see it with my own eyes, I am thankful to se3e it through yours, Melissa. What a beautiful eye you have for the capture. I sat there designing a blog in my head for you with the pictures. 🙂 It’s something I just naturally do.

    and the camels smiled for the pictures!!

    Love to you all…one day we SAHLL BEHOLD HIM!

  30. 80
    Geneva says:

    Awesome, the pictures were so enlighting and the musice was beautful. Thank you for sharing.

  31. 81
    Eposi says:

    You did a great job, Melissa. You have quite a talent in photography! The breath-taking way you captured some of those pictures made me almost forget that I was there. Wow! I also love your choice of music, especially the second one. I really do “stand amazed.” I am still trying to digest everything.
    You, Ms Beth, and the LPM staff are such servants. I really appreciate each one of you. I also want to give a shout out to all my sisters (and the lone bro- you know who you are)! You all blessed me more than you will ever know. Thank you. Love all y’all!


    • 81.1
      Melissa says:

      Hey woman! So glad you commented! How has your week been? Have you been in crazy jet-lag? So great to meet you!

      • Eposi says:

        It was so great to meet you too, Melissa, even though so briefly :(! As for me, my crazy jet-lag was really in Israel. I was averaging 3-4 hours of sleep most of the week. So thankful for the Lord’s sustaining strength. I have only had a mild case of jet-lag since we returned. Praying you are fully recovered soon.

  32. 82
    Kristin Takemoto says:

    Just what I have been waiting for! Thank you for taking the time to make slideshow video. Awe-inspiring!! I too would have loved to know what some places were but I can’t imagine the time that would have taken! I am so satisfied with the pictures!! Thanks again. As far as the cappuccino goes, I must admit I have not had one before (that probably hurt your soul to hear, sorry). But I am a huge coffee drinker….best cup of joe I have had to date is from my friends Keurig. Those machines are heavenly!! The perfect cup!!

    • 82.1
      Melissa says:

      Okay Kristin, so did you mean that you have never had a cappuccino or you have never had a good cappuccino? i must know or else i won’t be able to sleep tonight! –melissa

      • Kristin Takemoto says:

        Hold onto your hat Melissa…..I have never had *A* cappuccino. (oh the shame)!!! I know, I know if we were friends you would probably disown me…. it is officially something that I must do ASAP!!! I always find joy over yours and Amandas talks of tea and cappuccino but never venture towards ordering one when I am out!! I will let you know as soon as I have one!! =)

  33. 83
    His Jules says:

    Thank you so much Melissa! You made me feel as if I was there. Sometimes I watched and prayed and at other times I was moved to tears. You did a great job! Can’t wait for you to tell us about the trip through your spiritual eyes as well!

  34. 84
    Miranda says:

    Beautiful! I felt like I was there, I sure making it a goal to go visit one day. Thanks for the beautiful pictures!

  35. 85
    KarriedbyHisLove says:

    Utterly beautiful!! Utterly moving!! Seemed so real!! Loved the music!!! Thank you so very very much for sharing!!! Praise our Savior for all He endured and gave for us!!!

  36. 86
    Lauri W. says:

    Fabulous! One day to walk there myself is a dream.

  37. 87
    Teresa Cecil says:

    Absolutely beautiful!!! You did a mighty fine job Melissa!! Made me feel like I was right there with y’all. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

  38. 88
    moosemama says:

    Oh my. I only had a lump in my throat until the slide came up that said “The Town of Jesus”. Then the empty tomb…needless to say, I must go re-apply make-up now.

    Melissa, you have no reason to worry that it wasn’t enjoyable…it was wonderful! Beautiful, touching, sweet…it made me long to be there. I think you are a good student and Rich is an excellent teacher.

    Thank-you for sharing it.

    Melana 🙂

  39. 89
    Alexis R says:

    Great pictures! Israel has been on my bucket list for a long time and looking forward to going with all my boys one year!!

  40. 90
    rhonda says:

    Pretty sure I would cry through an entire tour of the Holy Land. Yep…pretty sure;)

  41. 91
    Kirsten says:

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those pics! Israel is my absolute favorite country on this planet and I’m so glad you all had a fabulous trip! 🙂

  42. 92
    Sue says:

    Dearest Melissa…I could have watched so much more–totally awesome, beautiful, moving…there are just not the words. The music was perfect…It makes me want to go there all the more…God willing, I will someday…if not, I have your trip to remember…You are so loved and appreciated…

  43. 93


    So fun to see the trip through your eyes. Thanks for the time and effort to share it with us.

    I taught six weeks on Psalm 23 at our church this spring, and love, love, love the picture you included of the sheep.


    P.S. And you have some great earrings, girl. In fact, there are great earrings all throughout your slideshow on all the women! 😉

  44. 94
    Jamison says:


    Thank you for doing the slide show. I have been so blessed by this ministry.

    Love You,

  45. 95
    Cory says:

    Great Job!!

  46. 96
    Donna says:

    Wow……………leaves me speechless in awe…cannot even imagine what it is like in person……Our God reigns!

  47. 97
    Mary Watkins says:

    Melissa, you did an awesome job on the video. Thanks for taking the time and care to put this together for us. I feel as if I made the journey with you all. 🙂


  48. 98
    Tisha says:

    Absolutely beautiful!! I loved it. You did a wonderful job putting it together.

  49. 99
    Karla Marsh says:

    What an incredibly beautiful video – it brought tears to my eyes . . . thank you for sharing your experience . . .and how do I get on the list for the next trip?!

    Currently reading and working through 90 Days with Jesus and it is amazingly life changing . . . I haven’t missed a day yet and it has increased my appetite for the word more every day . . . thank you for your faithfullness and obediance to God’s call on your lives to share your knowledge of God’s word . . .

  50. 100
    Linda says:

    I didn’t intend to watch the whole slide-show, but there was simply no place to stop. Thank you Melissa. It was so moving. You made me cry – good tears. What an amazing trip.

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