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The Hamas attacks here this week certainly elevated security concerns. I’m sure some of the Mercury staff became more than a little anxious. By “some,” I mean…me.

I’ve always thought it was good to develop your spiritual gifts. And since there is an entire book called “The Gift of Fear,” I’ve decided to make that mine. I’m hoping to take my rough, paranoid concerns and polish them into a highly-honed fear of a world-class nature.

We did have our first “all hands” meeting last night. Everyone from Mercury, GBTV, The Blaze and, also, Jeffy.

If Glenn sensed any apprehensions, overwhelm, or anxiety among the group, then he knew just how to deal with it.

Cake.

He actually claimed that a doctor told him to eat cake this weekend. I'm not making this up.

Glenn did say that he believes we are all safest if we are where God wants us to be. If you are in Kansas and God wants you to be in Jerusalem…then you should be in Jerusalem.

He said he felt certain God wants him to be here. But he said that might not be true for someone else. And he made this promise: If anyone felt any qualms or quivering, or heard any small voice inside that made them feel they should be someplace else — speak up and Glenn would happily pay for their flight right away.

Pat Gray boldly broke the silence to share: “Paris. I think God wants me to be in Paris. That’s what I keep hearing…Paris.”

Glenn, true to his word, quickly offered Pat a ticket to Paris, Texas.

The rest of us scrambled to contact our travel agents.

Our head of security, let’s use his code name — Captain America — told the group in very stern terms that for operational reasons we needed to avoid any activities that might involve “fun,” “merriment,” or, even, “quiet joy.”

We then went through a few drills. How to open and close the safes in our rooms. How to avoid eye contact during captivity. The 12 steps to diffusing an improvised explosive device. Safety guidelines for tipping in Israeli restaurants.

All the regular stuff.

The answer, by the way, is 10-12%.

The other answer is run. Faster. Eleven more times.

We all took Captain America’s sober advice to heart. After finishing our cake, we quickly dispersed to various “restaurants” and “watering holes” for hours of non-fun.

I was assigned to a hole about four feet deep which I dutifully filled with water. I was then allowed to forage for dinner.

Most of us were successful in sitting sternly, donning grim expressions.

But the various sauces and salads and bread that came even before my entree certainly gladdened my heart (bloggers are required by statute here to use random phrases that sound vaguely biblical) such that at the very least I was guilty of exhibiting quiet joy.

To read "Jerusalem Journal #1: Dancing with machine guns"  click here.

For all of our Israel/Restoring Courage news coverage click here.

One last thing…
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