The sounds of a broken record; the sounds of nails on a chalk board; the sounds of rockets falling again and again..
Yes, I am very close to a lot of Israelis who find themselves in a war zone - praying every day for safety and and end to the war. We gathered together as a community for a prayer vigil in solidarity with Israel...lots of tears and emotion. Jews from around the world - and many, many, many non-Jews who are lovers of Israel as well - are terrified as we hope and pray for peace, safety and an end to the atrocities in Israel.
This afternoon, I received a text from my 17 year old daughter:
"One of my Israeli counselors from the trip was just drafted OMG...I'm worried for him."
It is very different when my children are directly affected. It is a wake up call (of sorts) of how small the Jewish community is. We say the words Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh baZeh, "All of Israel are responsible for one another." It means just what it says - Jews worldwide (All of Israel) are responsible for each other....and, yet, sometimes we just do not know how to help or what to do. So, what do we do, then?
We reach out to our Israeli connections - check in with them and find out what they need...and how they are doing. We donate to organizations that will send resources as needed. We reach out to other Jews - those we are close to and those we barely know - to show our support. We pray...we cry...we hope.
A Prayer for the Soldiers of the IDF
War in Israel once again has called you to service.
Young, old, women, men, Ashkenazi, Sephardi - all Israelis.
The faces of some of these soldiers look so young…like babies.
Every face we see - stoic, loyal, ready to protect, even while in harm’s way.
God - give these brave warriors strength and comfort from above.
HaShem - Let Your name be on their lips as they enter the chaos.
Shechinah - Protect them with Your blanket of shelter.
Imeinu - As you guide their hands and minds, please bring them peace.
A country torn by war for 75 years - every citizen knows someone
That has lost their lives or been wounded throughout the conflicts.
The tanks drive by; the guns sound in the distance; the bombs seek destruction.
Today feels different - yesterday was horrible - tomorrow must bring hope.
The Jewish community mourns the loss of all of those who have died.
The innocent ones - the children, the widows, the widowers, the siblings…
We ask for God to protect them, the soldiers as well as the civilians.
May peace come soon and may Love replace Hate….
I am a husband, father and rabbi - just trying to help to make the world a better place!