The Shuk in Jerusalem
Once again, it’s time to hear from our sister in Jerusalem about what she is witnessing there as a believer in Yeshua. Put your prayer shawls on and pray for Israel and Sister J. Now here she is …
So on April 17 the king’s secretaries were summoned, and a decree was written exactly as Haman dictated. It was sent to the king’s highest officers, the governors of the respective provinces, and the nobles of each province in their own scripts and languages. The decree was written in the name of King Xerxes and sealed with the king’s signet ring. Dispatches were sent by swift messengers into all the provinces of the empire, giving the order that all Jews—young and old, including women and children—must be killed, slaughtered, and annihilated on a single day. This was scheduled to happen on March 7 of the next year.The property of the Jews would be given to those who killed them. A copy of this decree was to be issued as law in every province and proclaimed to all peoples, so that they would be ready to do their duty on the appointed day. At the king’s command, the decree went out by swift messengers, and it was also proclaimed in the fortress of Susa. Then the king and Haman sat down to drink, but the city of Susa fell into confusion. When Mordecai learned about all that had been done, he tore his clothes, put on burlap and ashes, and went out into the city, crying with a loud and bitter wail. He went as far as the gate of the palace, for no one was allowed to enter the palace gate while wearing clothes of mourning. And as news of the king’s decree reached all the provinces, there was great mourning among the Jews. They fasted, wept, and wailed, and many people lay in burlap and ashes. (Esther 3:12 – 4:3 NLT)
Greetings Dear Sisters and Brothers in The precious Name of Yeshua h’Meshiach, King of kings and Lord of lords. May He be blessed and glorified and guide my writing and may you be edified and blessed.
The 13th of July was the 21-year anniversary of my first setting eyes on our “new/ancient homeland,” having never been here before that date. By the 18th of that first month, we were full citizens. Today, writing to you between those dates, it is nothing short of a wonder and a miracle still.
I don’t know HOW it looks from where you sit so please take what I share as from my vantage point, weighing it ALL in scripture and His Spirit. As I write from my seat here in Jerusalem, the scripture above seems to perfectly fit the situation today as we see it. I’m referring, of course, to the world’s most powerful nations newly signed agreement with Iran (Persia).
You may remember in the book of Daniel that Michael (the guardian angel of Israel) said that he was delayed in coming to Daniel because he had to fight the prince of Persia. That fight has continued through the ages, and here we are today.
As you well know, our Prime Minister has been making quite a nuisance of himself, trying to expose the plans of Iran and attempting to get the leaders of the world to take what Iranian leaders openly say, seriously. Today, as I read a cross section of news pieces, the mocking of our Prime Minister and nation has definitely taken on new proportions.
We stand alone as the laughing stock of the world (paraphrasing one article from abroad) now that this powerful PEACE ACCORD has been signed. “New winds blowing”…”change”…but there is nothing new under the sun, as King Solomon said. Amazing that this was signed during Ramadan and during our 3 weeks of mourning…
The mood in the country is sober. Saudi Arabia is reaching out to us in a new way, while Turkey and Syria are rejoicing with Iran. New alliances are being forged in secret corners of the Middle East. The people are listening. They are under no illusions. Even criticism toward the government is toned down as the people sense gathering clouds and know that we MUST stand together in unity.
I think of the cloud and the pillar of fire by which The Lord revealed Himself as a Guide, Protector and Comforter through the book of Exodus. A terror to the Egyptians but a comfort and guide to the children of Israel. I think of that as well whenever I read Revelation: His judgment is True and Righteous in the eyes of His children, but great fear to those whose hearts are hardened against Him.
Israel right now is in the midst of the 3 weeks of mourning (as I mentioned above) before ‘tisha b’av’ (the 9th of the month of Av). This is a day of fasting, repentance and soul-searching as we remember the destruction of both the first and second temples. Interestingly enough, both happened on the same day.
God DOES speak in times and seasons, although not always as we interpret Him. ‘Tisha b’av’ is also a date when a shocking amount of disasters befell the Jewish people and nation. We DO see them as God’s judgment and we know that He means what He says. So, Tisha b’av is approaching.
I love listening to the discussions that go on during this time of year. Soul searching, heart searching. Current rabbinical wisdom says that the temples were destroyed and that Israel is usually judged because of animosity (or hatred) among the brethren. Bickering, cheating, backbiting, not looking out lovingly for one another.
That does go along with what Yeshua said when He said that the entire law could be summed up in Mark 12:31, 32
“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
Right now there is a trickle of a demonstration of this as people read portions of scripture including Jeremiah and Lamentations. There is a seeking, by our own strength, to live this humble, selfless love. I think of how we as believers with the Holy Spirit working within us so often fall short. What will it be like when all of these people come to know Him?
At the shuk, the prices are shockingly high, but people need to eat one way of another. I run into Dalia regularly (the demon possessed woman whom I’ve asked prayer for) and we talk. She has many worries and I talk to her about God but during the times we talk I am constantly asking Him to prepare her heart to hear HIS NAME and receive HIS delivering power into her life. Yet I still get a check to walk carefully. So I wait to share more. I share some temporal wealth with her but long to share the TRUE riches. She hugs me and people look at us with interest because most people are scared of her as she is rather fearsome. Then she goes off to scream and yell at others.
When I fret about “what am I really DOING for YOU Lord…to make YOU known?” I will find the vendors lighting up when they see me and I must trust that is because His Light is somehow seen and it is precious even to those who don’t yet know His Name.
The train has become one of the great summer vacation outings and every day as I come home from work, it is filled with families. These families have 5 or 10 children all dressed alike and excited to be riding on the train. They run up to the window to get a glimpse of the bridge of strings (glorified overpass) as the train passes over it for all of 7 seconds.
“Is that ALL?” they ask their parents, but they are still in wonder.
The city has provided many street activities and everyone with children is busy about enriching their summer and keeping their minds free from worry. In the south, there are increasing rockets from Gaza again and that doubly impacts the children.
I don’t really have much to share, so won’t waste your time, but I do hope that those of you who pray for Israel are seeking Him as to how to pray into all of this change. I personally believe that we MUST hear from The Holy Spirit HOW to pray and that He will be specific. I feel my heart resisting suggestions given by others as to how to pray and am waiting on Him to lead me. Some of His leadings have been very interesting. I challenge you with that.
I want to add 2 websites of English news from here that I use now, if you care to look into our news. They are:
Israel hayom (Israel Today)
The Times of Israel
I also want to thank you for your prayers for me and for my family. I have been very tired. His Strength is such a wonderful promise that keeps me going. He is just so very good and is more then enough for every need. I send much love,
Your sis J