Although the speaker later told me that the translator got his question wrong (!), it did open the door to explain how everybody paid their own way to come and that this as a scientific investigation into the history of their country and people.
Then Dr. Macalister of our team shared with them some interesting pieces of pottery, which were thousands of years old, that we had found. Well, we had a bit of a break-through and, with much more enthusiasm, they spent the next day with square supervisor Carroll. Today, Dr. Macalister spent the morning hiking with them around the dolmen field in the adjacent mountain.
This afternoon, I had another question and answer time with them – this time I asked the questions. What had they learned after being with us and what are your education and career plans? We had a great talk and then I took them to my area and they spent about 45 minutes excavating our ancient temple.
It was a wonderful experience. These are bright young Jordanians and it gave me faith in this country’s next generation. But it also gave us a chance to share our hearts with them – our scientific approach to archaeology, our true interest in their antiquities and developing tourism in their country, as well as our love of their country and the Jordanian people.
Possibly the most meaningful experience with these young men and women came at the very end of the last day. The young man who asked me that initial gold question said, “Now I understand what the real gold is.”
I am grateful to be here and appreciate the opportunity of inputting into the hearts and minds of young Jordanians. We hope it made a little difference in their lives and maybe could lead to an even better Jordan in the next generation.
One Young Life at a Time,
Pastor Gary Byers
Spiritual Life Director