My heart was pounding. It felt like I was about to implode from the inside out. My palms were sweaty and it seemed like I was dying of anxiety. I dreamt of this moment for so long it’s hard to tell if I was inside my dream or that beautiful dream was finally coming to fruition.
I looked around and I saw El Al, the airline carrier of the nation of Israel. In front of us, two beautiful kids were singing “Am Yisrael, Am Yisrael chai” and I wanted to chime in “Od avinu chai, od avinu chai.. Hevenu shalom aleichem”.. Translation: “The people of Israel live. Our forefather still lives. We brought peace unto you”.
So yes, I was finally in the land of Israel and I was seeing right before my eyes the seed of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I was witnessing a nation that has risen from the ashes of the Holocaust, people who’ve defied all odds and every single plot in every single generation to annihilate them from the face of the earth, since that fateful day of our father Abraham’s calling.
Every year I would hum to myself “Next year in Jerusalem” until finally that year arrived. What do I do now? The throbbing of my heart was so intense, it was as if it would leap out of my chest at any moment. Should I dance for joy on the streets of Yerushalayim? Should I kiss the land on which every single prophet and Yeshua himself walked on?
Should I weep exceedingly, tear my clothes up to a thousand pieces and shave my head? Not quite like the inconsolable grief felt by the lamenters near the rivers of Babylon during the first exile but out of ethereal happiness, for I have been tremendously blessed to see this miracle for myself. I was so happy it hurt. What? What have I done that so pleased Adonai that He so very graciously allowed me to enter this land that Moses himself only saw from a distance? I could write on and on about Israel. This is going to be a long blog saga and I will keep writing until the very last thought about it has been written out of my beating, venerating heart.
So where do I begin after that lengthy introduction? I’d start by using a souvenir shirt I bought for my Jewish “brother” back in San Francisco as my inspiration. I found it one day while we were strolling around the Jewish quarter of the Old city of Jerusalem. It says “Guns n’ Moses”. The juxtaposition of the pictures of guns, menorah and the tablets containing the Ten commandments is very poignant and also quite reflective of their current situation. To this day, they are still fighting for their very existence, surrounded by countries that don’t want anything to do with Jacob’s children.
They carry the Hebrew bible on one hand and the gun on the other. They can’t afford sleep in their nights, lest another instance of the Yom Kippur war is repeated.
Sadly, this post has to end here now for that is all the heartache I can take in one day. I promise, more of these to come in the near future. In the meantime, here are some pictures I took of young IDF soldiers and religious Jews around the streets of Jerusalem.
[Click the pictures to see larger image]
Have you been to Israel? What are your thoughts about that region? Thank you for reading!