Hello and welcome to a look inside Israel through the eyes of believer, J of Jerusalem. J has blessed us again, sharing as He leads her about what is happening around her. Thank you for coming and praying! Now, here’s J . . .
Sukkot, as I said, is my favorite holiday. OF COURSE…I have to qualify that by the fact that I love most of the others as well…and they are nearly ALL my ‘favorites’ at one time or another. Our sukka has been very busy this year as we have been BLESSED to have guests for almost every meal…and at three of those meals our table in the sukka was filled with old (and new) friends from Alaska (a different group each time)…SO encouraging and edifying! Such a gift to us! Last year I was able to attach photos of our sukka for you. If you are still vague as to what they look like, http://realjerusalemstreets.wordpress.com/ is a lovely site by an amateur photographer who documents Jerusalem in her photographs weekly. This week will be full of different types of sukkas…and you can also catch a view there of our ‘lite rail’…which is something that none of us could do today!!!
Yep! As our streets are FULL to overflowing with worshippers, and celebrating Israelis from all over the country and tourists from all over the world…our brand new rail drivers went on surprise strike! The resulting traffic nightmare was a real test of the character that The Lord planted in me as it took me over an hour to get home from the shuk (!) with many buses so full that they passed us by.
And speaking of ‘tourists’, that is one of the highlights of sukkot… the filling of Jerusalem with BELIEVERS, CHRISTIANS from all around the world, pouring in to celebrate the ‘Feast of Tabernacles’ at any one of a number of Christian ‘feast conferences’ going on during this time. The city is ‘relieved’ by His Light in them flooding our streets, and our loads ARE lightened and it is a great blessing! On my crowded bus I got to speak to two young Christians from Hong Kong…so sweet and their sweetness overflowed to me. As they got off, two BIG guys got on bedecked with black leather vests and black tee shirts stating; ‘DISCIPLES! JESUS IS LORD! Motorcyclists for Jesus…Norway’. They looked like wrestlers and I had to giggle watching everyone look at them in amazement. Oh Lord, BLESS those who come and those who couldn’t come but pray! Let this city be flooded with Your Light and testimony…and bring forth fruit to Your Glory!’
The Jerusalem March is usually the biggest and most encouraging event where the Christians are able to so encourage the country, but this year’s march will not be what it has been in years past…for it is taking place on Tuesday…and Tuesday is a day that will sum up the mixed emotions that are playing out all around us…for on Tuesday is the scheduled prisoner exchange for Gilad Shalit.
Approaching this subject is difficult for me as it is so charged with emotions larger then I feel that I have the ability to express, and those emotions are currently spread out, raw, over the country…pouring out into the streets and burying deeply into each heart. There is not one Israeli who is not happy that Gilad Shalit is coming home…and we are praying that it will not be in a box, (as were our last three, though we expected them to walk out of the waiting car at our Northern border).
I told you that the ‘ransom price’ being paid for Gilad is 1,027 prisoners, including some several hundred with ‘blood on their hands’. As the list of prisoners has been printed, details are coming out…and being relived. I guess that this is the anatomy of ‘trauma’ or ‘post traumatic stress’…and it is very real. Please see http://www.ynetnews.com/home/0,7340,L-3083,00.html to help understand some of the emotions.
Mine broke when I heard that the killers from the lynching in Ramala in 2,000, at the very beginning of the intifada, were being released. I had never seen anything like that…I had never seen such blood thirst. I had never seen a man pulled apart with bare hands, and pieces of him thrown out of a window while crowds cheered…I had never known what that felt like…and I relived that horror as I simply heard the announcement. And as the crimes were spoken of again…each one re-produced that ‘tightness’ in my chest and knot in my stomach. And I remembered the attack that I was at on Jaffa Road.
The first inkling of what the response was going to be came late last week when a 25 year old man went to the Rabin memorial in Tel Aviv and, with onlookers as witnesses, poured white paint on it, wrote ‘price tag’ and ‘free Yigal Amir’ (the assassin of Prime Minister Rabin who was responsible for the ‘Oslo ‘peace’ accords’). When he was taken into custody and asked why he did this he said ‘You are releasing those who murdered my parents’ … and it was obvious that his grief was being relived. He was released. They are reliving their grief…both the mourners and those who were injured…and those who were near…and those who watched on television…the entire nation is reliving the horrors of the murders committed. Please watch the 15 Oct 11 video interview with the woman responsible for the Sbarro Pizza attack that killed 15 mostly young people and children. http://thisongoingwar.blogspot.com/ She is being released.
So…I can not write about why the parade will not be well attended this year. Most people will be glued to their televisions waiting to see if Gilad Shalit is alive…and so many…too many…reliving horrors deeply engraved in their hearts as the families of the killers of children rejoice.
Yet they are not being released ‘just for one soldier’…they are being released for ALL of the soldiers…who count on the government…the country…to do whatever it takes that ‘not one left behind’- the motto of our armed services – will be reality. We count on our soldiers and they must trust us. What a price!
Please hold the nation in prayer at this time. It is terribly emotional. I am not ‘wise’ enough to give you prayer points, but The Holy Spirit IS. He might have you pray for the government to be able to withstand this painful process…or for the children who lost their parents and siblings,…or the parents who lost their children…or for Gilad Shalit’s mind and spirit, or for his family…or for the salvation of our nation…or any manner of way that The Holy Spirit, Who searches the hearts of men, can lead…for He KNOWS the needs far better then I do.
And in the midst…it is Sukkot…and HE COMMANDS US TO REJOICE…and I WILL for I know the end of the story!
God bless you DEAR sisters and brothers. I cherish you. You are HIS! May He be blessed and glorified in each of us.