During the week before Easter, I had the opportunity to go on one of Musalaha’s Youth Desert Encounters. Israeli Messianic Jews and Palestinian Christian youth go into the desert for several days for an experience they will likely never forget. Here are some pictures from the journey:

The men proudly joined forces to move a very heavy table.

The Israeli girls talked on one side of the camp…

As the Palestinian girls hung out at the table with Judy. It made it difficult that several of them didn’t speak much English.

Our hike ended right near the Red Sea, and we had the opportunity to visit Eilat briefly. 

At the camp in the desert, a scenic location for our meetings.

I love camels.

An Israeli girl and one of the Palestinian guys. One of Musalaha’s ways of encouraging relationship-building is to put the kids together in uncomfortable situations, so they learn to work together:-). This is fun AND uncomfortable!

I finally rode a camel. So much fun!

I admit, the scenery made me feel a little bit like I was in a movie.

Everyone hanging out in the desert.

By the end of the trip the kids had built some good friendships. Here is a Palestinian girl with two of the Israelis.

I loved seeing the kids get to know each other during the trip, and am hopeful that these experiences will influence their perspectives for years to come.