God is always up to something, and occasionally we're blessed enough to find out what.
On the bus as we approached some tourist stop or other during our Holy Land trip, our guide said that the guy selling things out front had a good deal on bookmarks, and that he was a "good cousin." (This meant he was basically respectful and honest and worth supporting.) The bookmarks did turn out to be a good deal, as well as an easy thing to carry home as souvenirs.
A couple weeks later, I gave the bookmarks out to a group of pastors that I regularly pray with. Today, one of the pastors told me what happened afterwards.
When I gave it to him, he thought that he didn't need a bookmark, but that he would pass it on to someone who did. Later that day, he visited someone and saw a book lying on the table. He mentioned the book and noted that he had a bookmark. The woman said that the book was her daughter's, but got excited about the bookmark. She works at GM and gathers regularly with a handful of other employees for prayer and Bible study. The previous day, one of her co-workers told her that he was going to begin to read the Bible and asked her to find him a bookmark. She took the bookmark with a picture of Jerusalem to him for his Bible. He told the story to his wife, who started to cry. Asking for a bookmark and receiving one from the Holy Land was a sign to them of God's love.
Often, we think that we have an important ministry pastoring churches, saving souls, preaching the word, and building the kingdom. We think we travel to the Holy Land to understand the Bible better, to experience God more powerfully, and to bring something back to share with our churches. But maybe God just needed somebody to go get a bookmark.