Last Saturday, Marianna and I went to Museum Island -- a part of Berlin where there are five world-renowned museums along the Spree River. After doing a little shopping at the Antique Market outside the Bode Museum, we decided to go to the Pergamon Museum. Though we will admit that museums are not really "our thing," we were in awe of what we saw there.
The first room you go into shows off the Pergamon Altar containing freezes of Greek gods and goddesses. It was interesting to see this special piece of art, as we are teaching Ancient Greece to our classes. There were also beautiful mosaic floor tiling and spectacular Islamic art -- prayer niches, tapestries, and ceramic pieces of beautiful colors. Amongst all these artworks that represented the worshipping of other faiths, the Lord made His awesome presence very known to me in a particular part of the museum.
When the man in my earphones told me we would be going to see some Babylonian artwork, I didn't really think much of it. But then, as I walked through the massive and exquisite Ishtar Gate and heard about its significance to King Nebuchadnezzar, I was absolutely floored. I'm pretty sure I gaped in awe for a good thirty seconds. You see, Marianna and I have been studying the book of Daniel through a Beth Moore study while we've been here. We are learning how to have integrity in this modern-day Babylon we are living in. We are learning what Daniel went through and his faithfulness to stand for God even when his life was on the line. So, standing in front of the Ishtar Gate was so incredibly surreal. With my own eyes, I was seeing the SAME EXACT structure that Daniel saw! U-N-B-E-L-I-E-V-A-B-L-E! I am convinced that choosing to go see the Pergamon Museum and deciding to go through the audio tour was not by chance...our AWESOME God orchestrated the whole thing! He continually proves Himself to be so real.
"King Nebuchadnezzar said to Daniel, 'Surely your God is the God of gods, the Lord of kings, and a revealer of mysteries...'"
The Ishtar Gate
(These are not my pictures since you aren't allowed to take picture inside the museum. :)
Since Winter Vacation, I have been super busy with school. Every school day is jam packed with planning, teaching, and preparing. I am enjoying it though and beginning to feel a sense of purpose and reward from what I am doing.
On the weekends, Marianna and I have been relaxing and exploring Berlin. We have made it to a few good restaurants, including Henne--a really cute German pub famous for its chicken. JFK loved the establishment, so we thought it would be fitting to go check it out since our school is named for him. The menu had more choices of beer than it had food...literally, the only entree was a whole fried chicken, and they had a couple of sides and desserts on the menu. The chicken was so good and I ventured out to try the potato salad...not too bad! Marianna and I loved Henne because it made us feel like we were really in Germany!
We've also been able to shop along of the main shopping streets in Berlin --- Friedrichstrasse. You know how I love to shop. I saw a precious pink plaid Burberry dress that caught my eye in Lafayette but I don't think I could justify spending 275 euros on it. Darn.
A couple of weekends ago, Marianna and I went to walk on the frozen Schlactensee Lake--since Irmgart was strongly suggesting we go. When we got off the S-Bahn stop, we followed the crowds to the lake. It was an incredible sight! Kids were sledding, people were cross-country skiing, families were making snowmen. There was even a couple of guys selling brats and drinks from a stand right in the center of the lake. It was so awesome! (Be rest assured...it was so frozen that snow was still on top of the lake...no chance of falling through.)
One of my FAVORITE desserts I have discovered here are Amerikaners. They are German Vanilla Biscuits, and they are phenomenal. They got their name because the GIs after WWII would make them. Marianna and I love them so much, we decided to make them. I found a German recipe and translated it (hoping it was all correct). After about an hour of preparing and baking, we took out the Amerikaners from the oven and they were perfect---almost as good as the bakery's. We were so excited! Plus, they tasted great! Irmgart was really impressed with our baking skills. She kept saying how delicious they were! haha! I'll definitely be bringing home the recipe and making it for y'all sometime. You will LOVE them.