Our hotel for our overnight stay here at Pamukkale was breathtaking, with a round hotel with rooms all around the outside and a large open area with a pool in the middle. This was the very popular spot with all the hot pools and Hierapolis 5 minutes away. There were 3 different pools right here at the hotel too. It's a busy tourist destination and I can see why. The hot pools at Hierapolis are amazing and the white on the mountainside from all the minerals and calcium with a combination of how the sun hits them is all a very unique formula for this wonder of the world. It was really neat to be able to walk in these ....but it was also sobering to know that this was where Laodicea got its waters from.
We started our day today by going back to Hierapolis, the place where the calcium and the minerals of the natural hot springs from up on the mountain are turning its hillsides into a pure white. It is fascinating to see and a wonder to behold how this water can do such a thing. It is from up here that the people of Laodicea had drawn their water through the valley and up to their city but by the time it got there, it was lukewarm. Paul had been here and had spoke of this place while on one of his missionary journeys. So fascinating to read through the Scriptures here and to be reminded on site of what all took place. Our tour guide is literally a walking encyclopedia and so full of knowledge. We are very thankful for him! :) The Church at Laodicea was the lukewarm church, the materialistic church, the church that was neither hot nor cold and Jesus said he would spit them out of his mouth as He would rather have them be hot or cold. Yesterday we had also been at Colassae, where the water is cold and the spring is still running freely. The water had been brought up to Laodicea as well but was also lukewarm by the time it got up there. Very much of the people there...they were so lukewarm towards God. Even today, there are no believers in the area yet it is full of tourists enjoying the hotsprings and business is booming. Hotels are going up everywhere and development is happening...but here is no church. It was incredibly meaningful to read the letter in Revelation 2:14-22 here and to contemplate the meaning for this church to us today. Who wants to be lukewarm? But yet, much of the American church is and we need to wake up. Jesus wants us passionate for Him and His word and less concerned about the things of this world. Nothing here will last, and we have seen a testimony of that again and again. So many temples to the gods and goddesses who can do absolutely nothing for the people and yet they are being redone and beautified with tons of money being spent into their restoration. That is so sad to me really, so much money going into that and yet so many kids and people starving in the world. hmmm.....just one of those things that make you go hmmm...and no churches in the area and a huge lack of unbelief in God...the One True God that is :( ...very sad indeed. I pray that the eyes of these people will be opened and that their hearts will turn to Him before it is too late. And I also pray that our lives would follow after God more of the church would become passionate about following Him wholeheartedly in these last days. So very much to learn from the church in Laodicea....
Now it is off to lunch and then a long drive to Kusadasi for two nights where we will be staying on the coast of the Aegean Sea and touring through the ancient city of Ephesus, the fundamental legalistic church.... And what another beautiful hotel we are at!!! What a view!!! It was fun to go into a local grocery store and see everything in Greek.....all so Greek to me!! :)
One other thing that was a major highlight today was meeting with a local pastor of a church here near Kusadasi/Ephesus, whose name was Mike Martin. He shared with a group of us of how the church is doing here and how the people here can be drawn to the church. It was absolutely wonderful to hear from his perspective how things are and how we can pray for Christians here in Turkey. Such a blessing to meet him, so God-ordained, I am thankful for how God brings people together.
....photos to come :) .....and now they're posted :)