From Jay’s desk:
“Shalom Dear Friends and Family,
The tragic and horrendous events continue in Israel. The suffering of innocents on both sides is so desperately sad, it is beyond words. Our website www.israelvision.com is now reopened by our son Chris, in light of the situation. He has established a GoFundMe account earmarked for the survivors of the Israeli families of the hostages held in Gaza. The latest count by Israel is 237.
To participate please go to: https://gofund.me/337091c5
My family is now urging me to meet you weekly for 2-3 minutes via video updates. Looking forward to it. We as a family, thank you for help in this drastic situation.“
With our love and prayers,
From Meridel’s Desk:
My Dear Friends who Pray:
Thank you, for your communications to us, to our children in Jerusalem and the rest of the tribe in Europe. Quite frankly, I find it impossible to wrap my head around what is happening in Israel. Last night while we sat around the table, our son Chris played this song. Here is the clip, listen carefully to the words in English.
A most interesting conversation followed. I said, “Who is he referring to when he says, ‘You want it darker?’ Is it the Lord? Why?”
“Because, Mom, the world has to get darker before mankind will finally turn to the Flame he refers to as the Light. This is history, only 8 in Noah’s time survived.”
Then, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Of course! The darkness is becoming darker, and YES, Abba is moving among all nations. Yes, Jews and Palestinians worldwide, but also nations like Canada and Ukraine, Russia and so many more who are experiencing catastrophes at the hands of their leaders. “Nations hang in the balance and are found wanting.” This is all is preparation for the multitudes in the valley of decision. These multitudes are facing death and destruction. If they will call out, I believe they will see the Light. The Flame, Leonard Cohen refers to, I see as the Flame; the very concept of God and Jesus, is still being crucified even as man kills man. Pause and think of that. It all began by disobedience in Eden.
(Chris our 2nd son has spent two weeks with us in Greece and it is a joy to have him with us. He shared a dream while here. “I awoke weeping and in my dream, a little 6 year old boy in Gaza, was clasping his dead mother’s hand while she was being wheeled away on a stretcher. I was up for sometime weeping and praying.”
The Home Army:
“We all have our duty, the PM, the War Cabinet, the Army, and the people have their duty and we all take it very seriously.” Visiting guest D. Rappaport
The war between Israel and Gaza grinds on, and we hear that it will go into winter. Israel is living up to her God-given name, of Israel, Prince with God, fierce, and lion-like in battle. Jacob who was a shepherd, is his other nature. He struggled with the Living God in order to be prepared for his role as leader.
We are in touch daily with our son David and his family who live in the heart of Jerusalem. One can sense the strength in their words. “Like everyone else, our hearts are broken, sad, hurting, confused, angry, asking questions, looking for hope, looking for comfort. Israel is a family and with all the pain, we will find strength to win and grow — we are with eternity.” David is just back from being up North on a film shoot. Adi, his wife has opened her dance school, in the beautifully renovated Gerhard Behar Bldg, which sits in the heart of Jerusalem. She has invited the public to come to all of her dance classes free of charge. The response has been overwhelming. She moved two families from the South to a lovely available home in Jerusalem. Here they can rest and enjoy the pleasant garden.
Next she gathered up the toys of well off children, and took them to the hotel in Kibbutz Rachel which is housing 40 families from the South. “Meridel” she said, “I cannot find the adequate words to express what I felt and saw when I walked into the room. It was a world I knew nothing of, but had only heard about. Everyone is still in shock, from the orphaned children, to parents whose children were killed or taken hostage. We fell into each other’s arms. No need for words. I sat with them for a while before leaving. Most of my grandmother’s family perished in Auschwitz during the Holocaust. Here I am, a 2nd generation Sabra, facing it all again. How can that be?” Adi and David and other dear Israeli friends, Dothan and Sivan his wife, will distribute the funds you send to ‘Go Fund Me’. Dothan, has been on the kibbutzim down south helping to identify bodies of the victims.
The Mourners Tent:
Liyah, my Israeli granddaughter, is 19 years old and instead of going to the army, she is serving her second year in a Jerusalem school, working specifically with ‘autistic’ children. Sensing the need in her community, she called the local municipality to come and set up a ‘mourners tent’ in the parking lot of their building, for the neighbors who have recently lost loved ones, kibbutzniks and soldiers. The tent came with a large coffee maker, table and chairs. It was full most hours.
The downstairs neighbor lost his son. After sitting the 7 days of mourning he wrote and I quote: “We can choose to elevate or decimate the souls around us. If I draw my attention toward the gruesome photos and non-stop news, it does exactly what terrorism was designed for. It diminishes me. One terrorist in captivity was asked, Why did you rape? He answered, because it dirties them.
Ha Shem (the LORD G-d of Israel) tells us that…
“He knew us before He put us into our mother’s womb.”Psalm 139
I will connect with ‘the good’ in this life. I will not let those who choose evil defile or dirty me. I choose to elevate all of those around me in this world; to bring His Light. Every evil of terrorism is an attempt to snuff out our given light. After the loss and carnage, we sit quietly for 7 days sometimes alone, sometimes with friends and family. After sharing our sorrows and tears, memories, and even laughter over the good times, we STAND UP on our feet to continue living in Ha Shem’s purpose for each one of us.”
“Our army tactically fights, I tactically pray on their behalf and pour out as much kindness during the day as possible. This keeps my soul clean and allows joy, hope and light to course through the impending darkness. I refuse to allow Evil to dirty me. I AM a ‘Light-bringer’. You can do the same.” By Old Baruch. One of the neighbor’s the Mourners Tent was set up for.
From our Synagogue:
I received this letter from one of our Bible Study group in our synagogue.
“Dear Family and Friends: During these difficult times, we are doing our best to stay strong, busy and positive. Our Synagogue, has provided its members and local community wonderful opportunities to contribute resources, time and energy, and to strengthen each of us with a sense of belonging. The sad truth is: Unfortunately, the government does not provide financial support. Our resources are limited and insufficient, for regular and now war related activities.
We (Norm and Judy), like many others, make huge quantities of egg salad and other things. Every morning at 7 a.m. we put together sandwiches for soldiers and families in hotels, which we are absolutely filled with people who need sufficient food. Soldiers first and those evacuated from the north and south,. We are just one of tens of thousands of programs in need of financial assistance.” Judy and Norm
Officially there are still 237 hostages inside of Gaza. I, Meridel dreamt they were being kept in tunnels under hospitals. In despair I said to Jay. “I don’t know how to pray?” His immediate response brought peace: “Our Father, in heaven, Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
May prayer be your outlet for the confusion, sense of anger and helplessness. We must pray for all people and the nations fighting for liberty. Will you join us in praying for the Presence of the LORD to overshadow His people Israel in this filthy war and of course pray for all innocents?
“When we are weak, He is strong.” That is the hope. This is long, but hopefully it will touch your hearts and bring understanding. I end with worship, let it be through our tears.
Love from Meridel and Jay Rawlings.
Meridel Rawlings, Box 47554, Ermioni, 210 51, Greece. email@example.com