Turkey Day in Camel Country

28 Nov

Dear Friends,

Happy Turkey Day from Camel Country. We celebrated with family, guests and some new friends at the House of Peace in Jerusalem. Due to the seven hour time difference, our wine glasses probably went up around the same time as your first cup of coffee.

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Thanksgiving dinner with the interns – we’re just so happy to have turkey!

Thanksgiving also marks our 2nd wedding anniversary. It feels like we’ve been married for only a moment and yet it also feels eternal because neither of us can remember what life was like before we had each other.

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Can ya see how in love we are!?!

Significant news items since our last transmission…

Visas
We just confirmed that we have been approved for volunteer worker visas to be in the country–a one year visa renewable for up to five years. The Ministry of Interior recently raised the requirements for visa privileges and we have seen several requests denied to international believers doing long and short-term volunteer work here, so it is truly remarkable that we have the favor of God to be here.

Recording Studio Construction
I have been put in charge of managing the conversion of an industrial building space into a professional recording studio. We have an impressive budget for this and I am currently working out a design with an architect from the Netherlands to get the most out of the space. In addition to the specifics of building an acoustically correct studio space, I am dealing with foreign contractors regarding each aspect of construction and getting the space up to spec. We hope to be ready to open in early 2008. This is a huge undertaking. Pray for insight and endurance for me as I manage this project and help bring it to completion. While we have our initial resources for studio equipment, construction and the first year of rent, we are still fundraising and have the opportunity to purchase the space.

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The outside of the studio space.

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Inside view of the studio space

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We’ve got our work cut out for us.

Work
Joy and I have come to Israel with a minimum of financial support ($350 a month at this point), which has been possible so far because we work for room and board at the House of Peace cleaning and doing regular upkeep, as we have many guests passing through this 6 bedroom 6 bathroom facility. We also lead worship for the House of Peace’s weekly service. Because we are not legally eligible to work here, we are praying/looking for projects that might generate income: graphics projects for Joy and when the studio is finished I will see some income from recording work. We want to be like Paul in that we intensely value marketplace ministry and are working towards becoming self sufficient. Yet even with that desire, we know that God keeps us dependent on Him for all our needs.

Two Bird Sky

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We played our first show outside of a worship context this past weekend at a courtyard/club space in downtown Jerusalem for a mostly Israeli audience. The name of our band is Two Bird Sky. We played new songs Joy has written in the last year – four of which she has written since being in Israel . This is the beginning of connecting with locals through music and pray that it is used as an opportunity to form new relationships and draw these new friends to God’s love. Pray that God ignites us and our gifts to touch lives and continues to open doors in Israel’s artistic arenas.

With love and grateful hearts for you,
Peter and Joy Kusek
ps. be sure to check out more fun pictures below!

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Shabbat dinner with the interns at our home.

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Peter in the Arab quarter of the old city.

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Delicious sweet potato quiche that Joy made – check out the link for the recipe!   http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/2320/sweet+potato+caramelised+onion+quiche

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Joy made Challah bread for our Shabbat dinner!

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Here we are with our friends Seth and Alisha Williams visiting from the states, we took them hiking in the wilds of Ein Gedi – David hid from Saul and his 4,000 men in the cool crags of this oasis on the western shore of the Dead Sea.

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One of the beautiful natural springs that we enjoyed on our hike.

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Keep going!

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Hanging on!

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We saw conies or hyraxes on the hike – Provers 30:26 speaks of these rock dwelling animals. Aren’t they cute!? That’s the Dead Sea behind them.

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Check out the view. We climbed all the way up this! WHEW!

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On the way down!

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