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 —
To Him Who establishes our times, borders, boundaries, paths, lessons…and everything else…to Him be the glory and honor and praise and blessing! And may you be blessed and encouraged!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRAYERS!
I came home from hospital on Sunday but have not felt up to sitting at computer until today. Yet it was so important for me to thank you for your prayers and to let you know that HE has been answering. This is the FIRST surgery that I have had with no surprises, no complications, and no bleeds afterward. Even my blood test results are better than they have been in a very long time.
I see that the rest is doing me good. Only some stomach problems that I had hoped would be resolved with the surgery are still lingering, even increasing. I was initially told that I needed to rest at home) for 6 weeks, but the surgeon wrote TWO weeks (one of which is over). My appointment at the surgery clinic is on the 30th, so I will have a firmer decision by then.
Meanwhile, I am sad to be missing the Intercessor’s for Israel (IFI) Prayer Conference, the one conference that I am involved with yearly. The part that I so enjoy being part of is the morning meetings when we break into small groups for some real prayer. The more informative meetings are available for free online if you care to watch, they are well worth it. They are easy to maneuver and to listen to and I recommend it: INTERCESSORS FOR ISRAEL
It is a cloudy, threatening day in Jerusalem, but the rest of the country is getting flooded with a bit of an overload of the much-needed moisture – the same storm system I suspect, that many of you in Europe are being trounced with. Authorities say that even this abundance will not be enough to change the impact of our ongoing drought, and that the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) our main water source, will still hit a 100 year low.
Our Granddaughters have been quite ill (not influenza, but scarlet fever , stomach virus’ and other child hood ailments). So my daughter has not been able to come by, but one of our nearly 80 year old patients (from the Doctor’s office where I work) came by yesterday with a pot of the most delicious Kurdish soup, meat pies and cake. It took her a full hour to get here, but oh I do love this lady.
Tsvia Cohen is from a (Jewish) Kurdish background and for many years ran the most amazing restaurant in the neighborhood of Talpiot. One year I invited her to our Succa, never thinking that she would actually come and she DID. She doesn’t speak a word of English but we have really hit it off over the years. She has told me about fighting in the wars and for Jerusalem and then her work as a volunteer with the police force. What a woman! She does NOT mince words.
I don’t remember if I told you that my dear workmate, Mali. She left for a different job, more compatible to being the mother of two tiny boys. She subscribed me to a website called ‘Did you grow up in Jerusalem?’ I thought ‘Why did she do that? I didn’t grow up here and it is (obviously) all in Hebrew, but as I watched it grow, the spirit of those who grew up here gripped me. I DID see that I was old enough to remember many of the things some of those 25 and under were recording. The site also contains some incredibly poignant, remarkable, historical insights.
One this morning brought me to tears and I want to share it with you, because RIGHT NOW this is the 70th year of the modern state of Israel AND the 50th year since The Lord returned Jerusalem to the sons of Jacob.
Yes, the words are all in Hebrew BUT YOU WILL UNDERSTAND. (I promise!) It begins with a Jewish wedding. I have mentioned before that when the cup is broken at the wedding, Jerusalem is remembered with the vow from
Psalm 137:5 and 6 “If I forget you, O Jerusalem, Let my right hand forget its skill! If I do not remember you, Let my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth— If I do not exalt Jerusalem Above my chief joy.” The film begins this way…and the rest of the 6 and a half minute video (please watch) is this Psalm 137 sung…along with film that will impact you. DO YOU WANT TO PRAY EFFECTIVELY FOR ISRAEL? BEGIN HERE…. HERE IT IS: PSALM 137 One of the people pictured may well be Tsvia…or any of the others that I rub shoulders with day by day…what an honor!
And it was that way, once again, in the hospital. I was reminded, from beginning to end, that there is NOTHING resembling an American hospital here. To begin with, being hospitalized is a family affair.
I remember in America time limits, age limits and limits on the number of visitors. Here? NO WAY! There are NOW even couches provided for family members to sleep on in many rooms.
When we first came, family members brought foam mattresses or sleeping bags to sleep on the floor, or put chairs together, even shoved the patient over to lie on the bed with them. Family members are expected to be with the patient in pre-op while the patient is waiting to be wheeled into surgery. To the right of my little cubby was a woman about my age, very distraught, being comforted by a loving husband in a kippa, who constantly laid hands on her head praying for her and kissing her forehead, reading Psalms to her, but alas she was not comforted. To my left was an Arab family, also doting over the woman on the bed as she too waited.
The large room was abuzz with 17 surgical teams assembling around their respective coach, each one pointing out their patient in the assigned waiting area. I was fascinated watching these teams, much like sports teams gathered around their coach receiving last minute instructions. And then, at a given moment, we all got wheeled away, into the cold sterile sealed operating room, still abuzz with activity. There must have been 20 people in my surgery room and I saw them as well oiled gears, all knowing their place and working in a beautifully orchestrated unity.
And then I woke up in the recovery room to the voice of my husband asking me, “How do you feel? How do you feel?”
How did I FEEL? There was NO way that I was going to utter a word with this ten ton truck rolling over my stomach! Was he KIDDING? The doctor came by and asked me my pain level. At this point, I think I was yelling a bit. When I said, “Eser plus’ (10+),” he called the anesthesiologist and told him to put me under again. Did I mention that I am allergic to most pain medications?
Let’s fast forward.
Having a hospital where entire families (some VERY large) come to visit all day and all night makes for interesting observations. Since my surgery took place on Thursday and NOTHING happens between Friday sunset until Saturday sunset, it is a time to watch not only families, but cultures in action.
Shabbat came in at 4:26pm on Friday so candles were set up for lighting just outside of the family room. The “family room” is a large room with a tv, microwave, frig, sink, hot and cold water and tons of disposable cups, spoons, packets of tea, coffee, sugar etc. Large families gather chairs around low tables and feast on homemade or store bought treats. Nowadays it is Arabs on one side and Jews on the other.
I saw a Moslem on a prayer rug bowing down next to a Jew wrapping tfillin (prayers). On this Friday there was an old Rabbi in the room to the right of the family room. Last time that I was there for Shabbat, the Arabs blew out (I kid you not!) the Shabbat candles shortly after they were kindled. This time, the Rabbi’s many disciples gathered in his room, stood watch over the candles as the Arabs scowled. It is really something to see: this battle that goes on!
By Saturday night I was tired and went to bed early. I was lovingly roused 3 times by kind phone calls from dear ones wishing me well. I fell asleep again and this time, “What is THAT?” I nearly fell out of bed.
A LOUD concert seemed to be coming from my four walls. “Don’t they know this is a HOSPITAL?” I wanted to yell.
Wearily I left my bed again to investigate. In the room to the LEFT of the family room was a young man from a small village in Samaria waiting for an operation the next morning. Many Jewish worship groups from these areas come into the hospitals to bless the people, singing Psalms. It is quite beautiful. This group of about 7, gathered around his bed, had various instruments and was singing Psalm 121 when I got there. Someone pulled up a chair for me. How wonderful to lift my hands and worship as we sang. “Yeshua, come!’ quietly I implored Him. The quiet peace settled around us:
PSALM 121 – (THE LORD, THE HELP OF THOSE WHO SEEK HIM)
A song of Ascents “I will lift up my eyes to the hills— From whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel Shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; The Lord is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, Nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul. The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in From this time forth, and even forevermore”.
Well,it is time to wrap this letter up. Thank you again for your prayers. Thank you for ongoing prayer for the yet unresolved stomach problem and thanksgiving for what looks to be a successful surgery. May The Lord Who directs us through the issues of our lives, direct us into completing our purposes in Him and through the shakings coming to this world.
God bless you, lovingly,
your sister J