Have you ever wondered what some of the places we read of in the Bible look like? Here are a few that are in the Middle East. Have a look at the Bible verses – can you picture the stories better now?
There is a natural gas vent in Iraq, known as the Eternal Fire (Baba Gurgur) that has been burning for over 4,000 years. The fire is so old, it’s even mentioned in the Old Testament Book of Daniel.
Qatar, a desert state in the Middle East, is aiming to grow up to 70% of its own vegetables by 2023 thanks to the launch of a new farming system that needs no soil and which recycles water.
Josh’s favourite Middle Eastern foods are hummus with falafel, rice with chicken in a hot yoghurt sauce, and wrapped up vine leaves with rice and meat inside. He likes that it is traditional to eat all of these things with your hands, even the rice!
In the Turkish village of Kuskoy (bird village) they use a whistling language to communicate across long distances in the mountainous area where they live. There are worries that modern technologies like mobile phones will lead to the extinction of this language.
An activity to help you think and pray
What you will need:
- Two chairs
- Paper and pens
- Objects to draw (see below for some ideas)
Have two people sit back-to-back. Person A has an object and must describe it (without saying what the object is) to person B. Person B must then draw it based on person A’s description.
Things to think about:
- How hard was it to describe your object without being able to say what it was?
- Did you communicate well? Could your partner guess what they were drawing?
Josh’s Dad works with people who have come to the Middle East to share the good news of Jesus, but who do not have all the words they need to communicate. Imagine trying to tell your friends at school the Easter story without the words for betrayal, sacrifice or celebration.
The next time you need to explain something to someone, try and remember to pray for Josh, his family and the people studying in the Middle East in order to explain the story of Jesus to people who have never heard it before.
Ideas of objects to describe: globe, telephone, hairbrush, toy train/airplane/car, cuddly toy, water bottle.