So good to have you here for another look at Israel, through J of Jerusalem’s eyes and heart. She has a very precious way of sharing and is a blessing to us who aren’t there, but long for His will and His nation Israel. Thank you for your prayers! Now, here’s J . . .
Our first rain showers of the year came, yesterday to the North and Tel Aviv, and in the night and today to Jerusalem. The smell of the air, after the long hot summer, is indescribable. How comforting and assuring that after the UN speeches last night, we have our first sprinkle. It is not a full rain, but it is a reminder of the promise of His faithfulness. And ‘faithful’, thank you for all of those who watched and prayed last night (our time) for our Prime Minister and the hearts of the world leaders. Even several who wrote back that they were, right then watching and praying! I will refrain from commenting on the events right now, but I do know that He heard our prayers! If any of you did not hear the speeches and would like to hear or read them and can’t find the links, please ask me and I will send them.
As I smell the freshness of the air, I also prepare for our fall feasts. The entire country prepares. We are entering nearly a month of mo’edeem (appointed times before The Lord). First is Rosh h’shana (the new year, the feast of trumpets), beginning this coming Wed. night, a time of thanksgiving and prayer and the blowing of shofarim (ram’s horn), of giving of gifts, eating apples and honey and meals together. Indeed, the shofarim have been sounding every morning since the beginning of the month of Tishri (on the Hebrew calendar). The days of Awe follow, leading up to Yom Kippur (the day of Atonement) a week after Rosh h’shana. This is quickly followed by the full, wonderful week of Sukkot (feast of tabernacles) –a time of thanksgiving and sitting in the outdoor sukka. Sukkot ends with Simchat Torah (rejoice in revealed The Word). What a month! What a time for Israel to stand…again…in precarious situations…forced to look up and find her strength and salvation in God Alone! By His grace, I will share with you the times, smells, heartbeats of the days ahead.
Following a very full ifi prayer meeting yesterday at 6:30am… a time when Isaiah 14:32 was spine tingling alive “What will they answer the messengers of the nations? That The Lord has founded Zion, and the poor of His people shall take refuge in it.” (how TIMELY!) I ran to the bus to get to work. Even more then usual yesterday morning I was so sad to have to leave early. My bus stop near the ifi Friday meeting is at the shuk and from a distance the bus stop looked unusually crowded for 7am. As I approached I saw that there was a class of, perhaps 6th or 7th graders there with their teacher, a tour guide and an armed soldier guarding them (that is the law for any organized group of children together… there must be an armed guard with them) I listened as the guide, along with the teacher, was sharing the history of the shuk and it’s habits. The children were excited to enter it’s just-waking alleys. I love the way Israelis tour Israel…CONSTANTLY! As if everyone wants to get to know each rock and tree personally. I prayed for them to encounter Yeshua.
I was off to begin my day.
But it was a bus ride the day before that I wanted to share with you. Once again I took the 18 bus; that is the bus that I told you about, whose new route has been a nightmare. It was jammed, so I stood beside a young woman who was already grumbling. ‘He thinks we are bowling balls, this driver! It is impossible to stand up. Why can’t he drive smoothly?’ I had to agree that he did seem to be doing his best to knock us all down. ‘Well, that is probably the one good thing about the lite rail anyway is that it is a smooth ride.’ I said. ‘Ah! Olmert’s! He took all of our money and built luxury buildings, a lite rail and ruined our public transportation!’ she continued. I laughed ‘Well…the GOOD thing is that no one ‘outside’ knows how stupid we are. The nations think that we are so clever. That is probably our best weapon…they don’t know. And since we ARE so clueless, we would be crazy to think there is no God, since only He could keep this crazy country going!’ She thought; ‘You are right ‘ she said. ‘It’s a miracle that we keep going’ There I agreed and it opened the door for a wonderful conversation. She is a single woman, probably in her mid thirties, and she has 3 old people whom she cares for. This is hard work, and low paying at that.
I soon found out that she was very discouraged and her life was hard. She asked about mine, and I shared with her some of our situations…but again I laughed; ‘Without Elohim I would quit…but He makes it all worthwhile…He is enough, He fills my heart with Joy, and we still have a roof over our heads and food today.’ I smiled. ‘You are religious?’ she asked, obviously surprised, since I do not dress like the religious women. ‘No. But I love Elohim with all of my heart and I get up very early every morning and read the scriptures without a prayer book or a rabbi and then I pray from my heart.’ She looked serious ‘Oh, that is the best way. To pray from your heart. I think He hears then.’ I answered ‘Oh, He always hears an honest heart that is sincerely seeking Him. Did you know, the scriptures are really EASY to understand if you ask Him to help? We don’t need the rabbis to tell us what they say.’ She nodded ‘Yes. They have our history in them’ (the children read the scriptures in school as the history book) ‘But more then that!’ I said…’It is the CHARACTER of those who follow Elohim…and those who don’t… that we can also look at. The character of King David, for example; his life was so hard but he always turned to God and he was given help and joy and strength and wisdom from God’. I went on to explain that even more then man’s character, we learn of GOD’S character and of His ways. My new friend’s stop came and we warmly thanked one another for a good ride together and wished one another a Good New Year. ‘Shana tova omevorach!’ (Happy and blessed new year) As she got off the woman behind me burst out with ‘THIS BUS IS RIDICULOUS! WHAT DID OLMERT DO TO US!’ I think I can actually THANK our x prime minister Olmert for the wonderful opportunities that he is providing me to share words of encouragement toward The Lord, prayerfully opening windows to The Name of Yeshua.
Shabat has drawn to an end now and I hear that we are on high alert along the Egyptian border. God knows what lies ahead this week…this night…this hour…and THAT is so comforting! How wonderful is His Mercy, how Great His Love! Thank you for your continuing prayers for this nation, this people and for the indigenous body of Messiah here. Love and blessing to each of you. Your sis