Keeping It Israel

Why Christian Millennials Should Connect with Israel—Sherri Barna

May 13, 2020 Jeff Futers/Sherri Barna Season 1 Episode 5
Keeping It Israel
Why Christian Millennials Should Connect with Israel—Sherri Barna
Chapters
Keeping It Israel
Why Christian Millennials Should Connect with Israel—Sherri Barna
May 13, 2020 Season 1 Episode 5
Jeff Futers/Sherri Barna

Jeff interviews Sherri Barna, a millennial entrepreneur, business owner and supporter of Israel to discover why she thinks it is important for all Christians, including younger Christians, to connect with Israel and their spiritual roots. Sherri is the founder and driving force behind Purple Bean Media.

Show Notes Transcript

Jeff interviews Sherri Barna, a millennial entrepreneur, business owner and supporter of Israel to discover why she thinks it is important for all Christians, including younger Christians, to connect with Israel and their spiritual roots. Sherri is the founder and driving force behind Purple Bean Media.

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Chris Atkins, One Media :

Welcome to the keeping it Israel podcast with Jeff Futers, where Jeff and his guests talk. Everything Israel as it relates to Christian faith and the church. If you are a Christian and you stand with Israel, you will be encouraged and challenged by this podcast. And if you're not so sure about the whole Israel thing, you need to learn how your faith connects with Israel, and why standing with Israel matters. Now here's Jeff with today's guest.

Jeff Futers :

Thanks for tuning into the podcast today. My name is Jeff and I'll be your host. I'm also the executive director of First Century Foundations, a ministry that is helping over 70 Christian and Messianic ministries in the land of Israel. My guest today is Sherri Barna. Sherry is an entrepreneur, a young business owner, and also the person who handles all of the social media for us at FCF and Sherri and I had a conversation a little while back in the city of Jerusalem, pre COVID-19 of course. And I just wanted to share with you our conversation so that you get a little bit of a perspective of a 34 year old young lady who is passionate about Jesus, first of all, but also passionate about the Land of Israel and about the history that we see there. And so let's listen in on our conversation together. Okay, well, I'm here today with Sherri Barna. Sherri, welcome to the podcast.

Sherri Barna :

Thank you.

Jeff Futers :

Good to have you here.

Sherri Barna :

It's good to be here.

Jeff Futers :

And we've known each other just for a little while.

Sherri Barna :

Yeah.

Jeff Futers :

But tell us a little bit about who is Sherri Barna? I mean, really

Sherri Barna :

Tricky. tricky question. Ah, yeah, I'm ...this, this is an awkward question. I have a social media business called Purple Bean Media. And I'm 34 years old I've got a husband and kids...three kids. And yeah, that's about it. love traveling love. Music Love...What?

Jeff Futers :

All right, all right. Now. You know, one of the reasons I want to talk to you on the podcast is you used to work for Israel based ministry, of which we are as well, First Century Foundations.

Sherri Barna :

Yeah.

Jeff Futers :

Tell me a little bit about how you transition from that to your own social media company and why?

Sherri Barna :

I'm...okay. So I started working there, I was offered a job, just data entry. So I kind of worked my way through the company. And then they when social media kind of blew up, I think it was around 2012. They said, We really need someone doing this for us. So I said, I really, really want this job because it's something I have been doing for myself and something I love. And I think that's it's an area that I really, really enjoy. So I ended up getting that job. And I worked doing that as the director of social media for five years. And then I just started, like, branching off because people were approaching me. And then I made the official cut in 2018 in the summer, and yeah, it's been taking off since, so...

Jeff Futers :

Great, great. Well, you know, one of the reasons I think that we were interested In working together with you was not only that you were good at doing the social media stuff, but also that you have some history with Israel and understand a little bit about the situation here in Israel and about ministry in Israel. Yeah. And so now, you know, First Century, FCF is one of your clients. Yeah. And you have been doing an excellent job for us. By the way, I just mentioned that shout out for Purple Bean Media. And, you know, if you need somebody good to do your social media, contact Sherri, we'll probably put her information at the end of the podcast here somewhere so you can find her Purple... purplebeanmedia.com.com. So let me ask you this. You You obviously are a supporter of Israel. Yeah. Tell me why.

Sherri Barna :

You know, just as a Christian, I think we are called to stand with them. We have a lot of people don't realize this, but our we have Jewish roots and our Messiah is a Jew, and our history like even this time being with you guys through Israel. We're seeing these major sites that are in Israel were like Hebron where the patriarchs are buried. And it's the first piece of land that Abraham bought moving through to the kings and through the prophets, and then through Jesus's ministry, and of course, we know the apostles went out from Israel, but it's just such a key component of anyone's faith. The fact that some Christians don't stand with Israel, it blows my mind because like, we have a Jewish Messiah, Israel is mentioned in the Bible. It's a huge theme in the Bible. And it's a major component that I think is super important. And I believe we as Christians are called to pray for the Jews to support them. And I yeah, I just I love the I love Israel. I love the people of Israel, and it's just, it's a cornerstone of my faith.

Jeff Futers :

Yeah...great answer. Now, so you talk a lot there about sort of the history and why you know as as believers in Jesus, our connection to the Jewish people is historical one... Jesus was and is our Jewish Messiah? What about what about the sort of the future component? You know what, what about God's plans for Israel long term and how we can engage with that?

Sherri Barna :

Yeah, like are you speaking more prophecy wise?

Jeff Futers :

And and what...what we believe I believe we both believe this, you know will happen in the future as it concerns ethnic Israel,

Sherri Barna :

okay. Yeah, like the fulfillment of the Jews basically like I think there's gonna be a spiritual awakening, I think they will see Jesus as their Messiah. It's clear for us in the Scriptures, like when we're reading Isaiah and like Ezekiel and all these old prophets, we can see Wow, that's Jesus, that points to Jesus. We have the scriptures that say, you know your Messiah, he's gonna come in on a donkey and Zachariah, he's gonna be born in Bethlehem, these major prophecies which were fulfilled in Christ, and I think it's amazing to see as a Christian, these things happening, but I do know there's a blindness, spiritual blindness and the Bible speaks of that. So I think one day, the light will go on I believe wholeheartedly, he's returning. And when he returns, he's putting his feet in Jerusalem. And I think there's going to be a spiritual restoration. I think the Bible speaks very clearly of that. And so it's a huge part of the future. And just the prophetically speaking and just like looking around Israel is such a tiny, tiny nation and it really is the center of the world. Jerusalem is a tiny, tiny city, and it's constantly on TV constantly being fought over. It doesn't make sense. That's why I believe it's a spiritual thing.

Jeff Futers :

So yeah, hey, listen, I'm I'm supposed to be the preacher. And that's that's a great answer. I, you know, we do believe we do believe that Paul's words and that that one day all Israel will be saved. Yeah, will come true. We don't exactly know I don't believe how that's going to happen. But, but I agree with you. I believe that that a spiritual awakening is coming. Yeah, I believe that because of what Paul intimated in Romans chapter 11 that that awakening will begin here in the land of Israel and spread to the entire world. I don't think it's just about the Jewish people. I think that that that will be the fulfillment of, you know, God's spirit being poured out on all flesh, as it says in Joel chapter two, you know, we talk a lot about that prophecy, you know, maybe being fulfilled in Acts two, but but really it wasn't, you know, it wasn't. The Spirit wasn't poured out on all flesh in chapter two the spirits poured out the beginning was then yeah, but I really do believe that prophetically, that prophecy will be fulfilled when this great awakening, really, actually happens.

Sherri Barna :

Yeah. And I believe we're in the beginning of the Great Awakening, because if you look at the global south, the gospel is growing like in crazy, crazy ways in the West, and we always think, like the world's all about us, and people are like Christianity is dying in the West because we see like a spiritual like numbness happening, but if you look at the rest of the world, China has, I don't know, I think it's like 3 million believers or something that they can count. So I'm assuming it's more because obviously they have to be underground. We have South America. It's the Gospels exploding everywhere. So it's good.

Jeff Futers :

Well, so obviously you care about Israel. You've told us kind of why you care. There's a connection historically, there's a connection for the future as well, as we've just been talking about. Why do you think other people should care? I mean, we come across Christians all the time, even pastors who, you know, they wouldn't say they don't care about Israel, but they really don't give it a whole lot of thought. They're, in a lot of cases, apathetic. Yes. towards Israel towards the Jewish people. They don't really see how it connects. Why should they care?

Sherri Barna :

I think they need to care because first of all, I do believe it's a calling on Christians lives. Um, I think, like I said earlier, the emphasis our history is within it, and we came out of it. So I think we should just like I know, like, my family is my I'm half Portuguese. So we celebrate that cultural part of us with our little Portuguese ways. And I think spiritually, we need to do the same thing. And I think there's just a lot of apathy because people are very confused. Like, we know in the news, it's always there. It's very confusing. Like, there's obviously it's a hotbed of political, you know, issues. And, yeah, basically, I just think, until you sit down and actually think about it, you won't think about it. So for sure, like, I think sometimes when people are like, Oh, you're going to Israel again, why, why again? And then I say, Oh, well, you know, you believe in the Bible, you're Christians. Let's have a conversation. And then they're like, Oh, yeah, that makes sense. Right. But when the pastors aren't preaching it, is just it kind of it doesn't go anywhere. So

Jeff Futers :

Yeah, I heard something very profound. A number of years ago, somebody said to me, You always have to remember that you don't know what you don't know. Yeah. And until until you're either faced with Or questioned about it, then you begin to investigate and you can learn new things. Yeah. Which maybe your mind wasn't closed off to before but just never considered. Yeah, exactly. So I think there's there's people in both camps there. Some their minds are closed to it. Yeah. The political scene here kind of is very controversial. Yeah, and polarizing for people. But then there's others who just haven't really considered it or given it much thought. That's great. And I think you're right, I think other people should care. Because, first of all, you know, the Jewish people, they're our brothers. They're our sisters. We are, we are family with them, not the other way around

Sherri Barna :

Exactly.

Jeff Futers :

They were first. And so, you know, the Bible says that Jesus came to his own his own received them not. Just because that happened, you know, doesn't mean that God's forever closed off to the Israeli people. They are His chosen people. There's nowhere in scripture where it says that, you know, God's gone back on his promise. Although we know that lots of people believe in replacement theology, yeah. And I just don't think that's the case. So that's great. Now you've been to Israel a number of times. Yeah, you travel here. You're here working with us these couple of weeks helping with with filming and helping with our social media stuff. Thanks for doing that, by the way. But, you know, what is it that you like about coming here?

Sherri Barna :

I, you know, it's so I live in Canada, and we don't have huge history there. We're just so young. We're only couple hundred years old here. You're walking and it's like, eras on top of eras on top of eras. We have the Abraham and like, how old is that, like 4000 years. And then we have the Roman era Byzantines and stuff like that. It's just everywhere you look at history, like one time, the first time I came, we're just walking down the street and they're like, do you know what that street is? I'm like, No, that's the Cardo. That's like the street that would run what was it east to west or ..., east to west and it had like the pillars and everything in it. Man you're just walking down the street and you come into contact with these like crazy old historic and biblical a lot of times things and I just that's what I really really love about it as much as I love Tel Aviv it's such a beautiful city and fun. Jerusalem is something special and and Samaria is amazing all these areas like it's just anywhere you look, there's so much history.

Jeff Futers :

Well Israel has it all, doesn't it? It's really about the ancient it's got the old it's got the modern and the new. Yeah. And it's it really is a vibrant place as well. I mean, if you've never been here, there's great nightlife here. Yeah, excellent, sort of European feel down here on Jaffa Street. Yeah. Where outdoor cafes and you know, all kinds of very, very enjoyable things that people could come and be a part of. And yet a lot of people won't travel here. Yeah, because they've got this mental block when it comes to to, especially Israel and Jerusalem.

Sherri Barna :

Yeah. Anytime I'm like, Oh, I'm going to Israel. People are like, are you so scared? I'm like, you know, I actually feel very safe there. There's other places in the world. I would not travel Israel and that But people travel to all the time. And Israel to me is very safe. And the other thing I love about it is so the first time I went It was hard to process everything when you're here like it really does take time because you're learning so much. Just going home and reading the Bible. I'm like, like the Sea of Galilee. Like I see it now in my head and all the felt board things are so accurate, like from Sunday school in the 80s. They had the felt board thing.

Jeff Futers :

They used actual maps.

Sherri Barna :

Oh, probably. But it was just shocking because my kids the other day had it. I was like, that's actually what it looks like guys like, but it's really cool. It's like the Bible. Really. It's a line everyone uses but the Bible really does come to life. And it's it's very neat.

Jeff Futers :

Speaking of maps, we were at a place was it yesterday, the day before? Where? Where the guy talked about the fact that Joshua sent out Yeah, to actually map Israel the very first time around. Yeah, it was from from Shiloh or Shiloh, you say in English. And it's kind of a cool connection.

Sherri Barna :

I thought that was neat, too. Yeah.

Jeff Futers :

Yeah. So you've been here a number of times. Put you on the spot. What's your absolute number one favorite place or site in Israel.

Sherri Barna :

I love the Old City. I just I really like walking around and it's safe as we know and I just love it's just so old and historic and there's so much and there's a lot of life to it too which is kind of cool. And I also do love Tel Aviv like I love the vibe I love the modern I love the cafes and restaurants on the food's so delicious and I love the water

Jeff Futers :

So the the Old City meaning the city of Jerusalem Yeah. And and then so you like the old in the new year you're kind of a little schizophrenic

Sherri Barna :

you know I honestly that's what I tell everyone I'm like it's perfect for every person because if you're into the history if you're into archaeology, boom you got it if you want new if you want fun if you want nightlife, but it's here to you they have like water they have mountains if you want to ski and certain times of the year like it's it's it's awesome.

Jeff Futers :

Yeah, actually right now there's still snow on Mount Hermon. You can go far to the north and be part of that scene at the ski resort or You can go all the way to the south to Eilat and, I would imagine it's swimming weather now. So yeah, it really is an amazing country. And very small. I mean, it's very compact. You can drive one end to the other and something like seven or eight hours. Yeah,

Sherri Barna :

it kind of reminds me of California. Like you have the mountains. You have the beach,

Jeff Futers :

right? Yeah. Very cool. Okay, so a couple last things. And then probably we'll sign off here, but you're young. You said you're 34. Yeah. And I find a lot of young people back home in North America really are either uninformed about Israel. Yeah. They're, they they've been, you know, influenced greatly by by media. So how do you think that we can most effectively change young people's attitudes toward Israel? What's the best way for us to do that?

Sherri Barna :

I think the tours and are just amazing because I think once they're here and they step foot and they meet the people and see it for their own eyes. I think that's life changing. I think programs like what you have and what you offer is really important for the people who can't make it over, basically and one on one it doesn't reach the masses, but one on one conversations, just having a non emotional, like conversation just saying, Here's like, biblically like, let's lay this out and just having those conversations, like a lot of people are don't know. So having the conversations often is eye opening, that doesn't reach the masses, because it's very one on one. But the I think social media obviously is important, because that's what I do. But I think the viewers are what would I think that yeah, it's just important to be here. I tell everyone to come. So

Jeff Futers :

Thank you. You know, it's I think it's very important too and as you know, you know, the the demographic that we typically reach with things like like our ministry, like First Century Foundations, yeah, the TV show, and our newsletters and so on that demographic tends to be you know, I want to say my age and older, probably even a little older than me in a lot of cases. Yeah. We somehow have to figure out a way to connect with that younger generation. And that's one of the reasons why we brought you on and contracted you to help us with our social media. Yeah, but I think too, we're developing a program where Bible college students from Canada can come subsidized to Israel on a trip Yeah, where you know, they will have to pay a certain amount but it'll be a program through the school, you know, get credit for their for their experience. It'll be like a course credit. And then we will we will subsidize from

Sherri Barna :

That, to me is a genius idea. Because honestly, if you can get the pastors to turn their hearts towards Israel, they will reach their congregation and that kind of experience. It stays with a person so they'll be able to preach from their pulpits for the next 40/50 years, however long they're preaching for. And we know the pulpit drives the church. So if they're passionate about Israel, if they think it's important, then the people will hear it and learn it.

Jeff Futers :

Yeah. Well, and that's that's kind of our long term. gamble. I mean, we really felt like we've got to reach this younger generation. And yeah, if we don't if we don't figure out a way to connect with with young people, then in 10 or 15 years it's going to be it's going to be really difficult to to raise enough money to help the ministries here in Israel. Yeah,

Sherri Barna :

The young people it is an investment because especially when you're 25/30 years starting your family, you just don't have disposable income to be doing these crazy things. But if you can invest in them, I think long term it will look very much like pay off. And but you have to be willing to take the short term hit. Young people love experience. They love to know where their money is going. So like gone are the days like my parents would just write a cheque and send it off. I know sometimes, like at my other ministry, it would just be an envelope filled with cash from an older woman who didn't know how to donate online. Those days aren't here anymore. We want to know we want transparency. Where's the money going? Who is it helping? Why should I Are you living high off the hog? Who is that the person is not the actual kid a kid I helped and that's why Compassion and those kind of things are like getting people to come on. Come to Mexico, come to Guatemala, see the lives are changing, because once they see it, they're sold out for life. Because when you see it, you believe it, so...

Jeff Futers :

Fantastic. Well, I want to say thanks for being on the podcast. I know that, you know, you're kind of stuck here with us this week. Well, you did agree to do this. So thank you for that.

Sherri Barna :

You're welcome.

Jeff Futers :

And thank you for tuning in. It's been great to have you on the show. Hey, thank you for joining us for the podcast today. And just a little shout out to Sherri and Purple Bean Media. If you're looking for somebody to help you with social media, and especially if you are ministry based Sherri would be an excellent choice. And you can find out more about her and her business at purplebeanmedia.com, purplebeanmedia.com, and I know she'd love to hear from you. We are so grateful that you listen in week after week. If you'd like to help ministries in the land of Israel, we work as I mentioned with over 70 there, and you can help us and find out more about those ministries at our website. firstcenturyfoundations with an s .com firstcenturyfoundations.com, and if you'd like to donate and make a gift, you can do that again at the website by clicking the donate button or going directly to firstcenturyfoundations.com/donate. Thanks so much for listening in. And remember, as Christians, we stand with Israel.